Tomi Lahren Would Like To Speak To A Manager About The Minneapolis Protests

Photo: Lorenzo Bevilaqua/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images.
Minneapolis residents are taking the streets in response to the murder of George Floyd by police. Thousands of people participated in a direct action Wednesday night, confronting Minneapolis police with demands for justice for Floyd, while the officers who took his life have yet to face any legal consequences. Some protestors who engaged in property destruction and took goods from Target were labeled as “violent,” while onlookers ignored the structural violence of the very thing residents were protesting. 
Right wing commentator Tomi Lahren was one of those people. Lahren made a name for herself by criticizing football quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s nonviolent protest against police violence in 2015. In response to the uprisings in Minneapolis, Lahren is unsurprisingly criticizing protestors’ tactics in a series of tweets following Wednesday night fires and items taken from a Minneapolis target.
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“Please tell me how stealing TVs and ransacking stores advances social justice,” she wrote. “Destroying stores and taking what you want is not ‘protest’ it’s theft and has NOTHING to do with justice for George.” 
Lahren is one of the many who are labeling protest tactics as "violent" in today's media discourse. However, many bystanders were eager to promote non-violent protests even in the wake of police's actions. In Minneapolis, peaceful protestors were quickly met with police in riot gear wielding tear gas, flash grenades, and rubber bullets, on Tuesday evening after the masses mourned George Floyd's death. The community then responded in a show of force, and Lahren began to tout the rhetoric that their actions were intolerable.
The TV personality has made her point repeatedly — there's neither room for nonviolent protest against white supremacy, nor direct action in the streets. “If you smash and bang on cops cars, riot and burn flags in the streets and loot your community businesses, you are not a 'protestor' you are part of the problem,” Lahren wrote. But her tweets received pushback from many online, who say her tweets “stoke the flames.”
Lahren's stance might be that there are no legitimate forms of protest against the institutions that uphold and project anti-blackness. But her discourse came across quite Karen-esque — and leaves no space to acknowledge the reason for rioting in the first place.

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