I was field testing the new @blacklighthub app while covering the protest/counterprotest at Wi Spa on Saturday. While it felt great to be back on the ground after a busy hiatus, it was a reminder how frustrating covering these events can be.
Around 9:30am I arrived at Wi Spa, where police lines were formed and a crowd of counterprotesters had assembled to await the arrival of the protest. The atmosphere was very calm, with the heckling of police.
Arthur Schaper of MassResistance began agitating counterprotesters. One shoved an umbrella at him, pushing him towards the police, who ushered him away.
Things went relatively calm again, and police went around announcing that the counterprotesters must remove any weapons or would-be weapons from the protest area. Reports of the protest gathering in a park nearby circulated.
Some counterprotesters attempted to engage the police in a civil discussion. Not long after after, the protest arrived, and officers fanned out across the street to keep the two sides separated.
Confrontations broke out. Counterprotesters began throwing colored smoke and water bottles at the Wi Spa protest. Protesters threw objects at the counterprotest. Towards the end of the clip you can hear where a counterprotester was shot by a cop with a less lethal round.
I went to get closer to the protest to film their confrontations with police and an officer pulled me into the protest. Tracy Saysay, who tried so hard to conceal his identity he wouldn’t even speak, started to follow me and get in my face. A cop tried to get him to stop.
A woman kept blocking my camera with an umbrella, claiming I was antifa. Someone recognized me from @SCNRbot and informed her I was not antifa. She backed off but others were not on the same page. The protest stopped in an alley.
Police then allowed protest to continue moving and I could see one of the protesters was carrying a baseball bat. Police separated them over a crosswalk, which they REALLY didn’t like. The police allowed them to go back across the crosswalk.
Guardian journalist @LoisBeckett was then harassed by the protesters, including Tracy Saysay and Lucas Reese Istruiz, who called me her butt buddy and told me: “help yourself, get out” - Saysay was then arrested.
John Turano (Based Spartan) yelled a bunch, as he does, and I pretty much spent the rest of the time being yelled at by people claiming I’m antifa. I appreciate the couple people trying to talk sense into those protesters but it didn’t work. For my own safety and sanity I left.
More on Schaper and MassResistance: splcenter.org/hatewatch/2018…
Correction: misspelled Isturiz. Isturiz was also at an anti-vaccine protest at Dodger Stadium earlier this year

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More from @emilymolli

12 Mar
THREAD. Unfortunately the takeaway from my time at Subverse for some people will be the recent cat-astrophe (sorry). Despite the difficulties, I'm very grateful for the many lessons I learned and the work I was able to do funded by our audience. Here are some highlights:
One of the very first pieces I did for Subverse was on the Yellow Vest movement in France. I went back a handful of times to keep up with it because I was frustrated with the lack of media coverage in the US.

Covering the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong definitely had a huge impact on me as a journalist in ways a single tweet can't explain. I still follow HK news fervently and can't wait to go back.
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20 Feb
Kevin Lyons, AKA @hydra_shok -- an avid Tim Pool simp who stormed the Capitol and ratted on his fellow MAGAs -- just deleted his burner account of 5 years after picking a fight and getting clowned on.

Read 5 tweets
11 Jan 19
Just arrived in Paris for more yellow vest protests this weekend.

My cab driver says this is a revolution like “the king [Louis XVI] and the guillotine” then made a head chopping gesture.

Follow this thread for updates
Hearing yellow vests in Bordeaux will be bigger and more intense than Paris tomorrow.

Tempted to take a train down in the morning but it’s a tough call.
Just heard a huge explosion and shattering glass in paris #acteIX #GiletsJaunes
Read 12 tweets

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