When an assembled crowd uses weapons (hammers, trash cans, bats, fire, etc.) to hurt others - whether uniformed or not; that is not a protest, that is assault. When those same weapons, deemed freedom of expression are used to damage public and private property; that is not protest, that is vandalism. In response to Mr. Risher's quotes below, there may have been more people hurt by officers than the other way around, butI would bet there have been more senseless acts of vandalism needlessly tolerated to accomodate "protesters'" displaced anger, and I'm tired of the constant deflection of that point and the placation of it. Not only do those protesters' which carry or use weapons create a threatening environment for a peacful gathering (creating there own reality and end game), but intimidate many who would responsibly use their 1st amendment rights. I endorse the council's ordinance and support the police department. Thank you Mr Risher for your comment, but I think you're missing the point, I don't think you do appreciate that the City Council wants to make demonstrations, and Oakland, safe.
Risher said, "I appreciate that the City Council wants to make demonstrations safe, but they should look at both sides of the equation and realize that there are more protesters who are injured by the police during protests than there are officers who are injured by protesters."
He said the ordinance's definition of banned shields as metal sheets more than 24 inches wide that are "designed to provide impact protection for the holder" appears to be reasonable.
But Risher said the fact that some protesters appear to feel that they need to carry shields to protect themselves from Oakland police during protests "is emblematic of a much bigger problem," which is the department's reputation for overreacting to demonstrators.
Risher said the City Council shouldn't use the ordinance "as a reason not to address police violence at demonstrations and other incidents."