Black Lives Matter Protest Cancelled due to “very real threats of violence we received,” says Organizer

[Facebook message posted by Luke Kinney, the organizer for the BLM Protest planned at Bishop City Park tomorrow, cancelling the event around 9:30 p.m. Monday night, June 1]

Dear Community, (do not show up to the park tomorrow) SHARE this post

I hear you. I am cancelling tomorrow morning’s protest for two reasons:

1. The number of threats we have received – very real threats, of violence to both people and property – has become excessive. I cannot in good conscience gather this community together – my friends, my family, my neighbors – if I believe I am putting them in harm’s way. I wish I could say I was shocked that some of my fellow Bishopites – people I live next to, people I’ve worked with – would have so little regard for our Constitutional right to free speech and expression, but given what is going on in our country right now, I am not.

2. The protest failed to adequately center the voices of Black, Brown, and Indigenous people. After hearing about George Floyd’s death, I felt that I had to do something. I felt morally obligated to use my privilege as a white man to fight against the systemic racism that has plagued this country since before it existed. In my eagerness to show how much our community supports Black Lives, I rushed to organize an action without doing enough to ensure that the voices of our marginalized neighbors – the people at the center of this fight – were the ones leading the protest. I still feel it is essential that we as a community get out and show our support for Black Lives and racial justice – and we will. Make no mistake, there will be action, and we will demand justice. But when we do, the movement will be led by Black, Brown, and Indigenous folks.

This is absolutely not the end of this effort. There will be protest. There will be action. But it will be led by those who are at the center of this fight, and it will be organized to guarantee the safety of my friends, family, neighbors, and all those who believe in justice for George Floyd and that Black Lives Matter.

Thank you for understanding, thank you for demanding justice, and thank you for being a part of this community.

Luke Kinney

 

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44 Responses to Black Lives Matter Protest Cancelled due to “very real threats of violence we received,” says Organizer

  1. John June 1, 2020 at 11:24 pm #

    It is not surprising to be that the BLM rally has had to be cancelled. In my experience, there is a huge undercurrent of racial intolerance in the bishop community. It is obvious that there are very few ( if any ) “people of color” there. The reason?- simply feeling uncomfortable in a community where anyone who stands apart from the prevalent ultra conservative white community is in the glaring headlights ( so to speak).
    In my opinion, Mr Kinney has done the right thing in promoting the BLM rally. I offer my full support. Let no one infringe upon our right to freedom of speech. Let no one stop us from supporting the right to live, the right to breathe!

     
  2. Greg Weirick June 1, 2020 at 11:39 pm #

    Having learned that BLM people coming were planning violence and vandalism as I understand it, its commendable of you to cancel the protest!

    Peaceful protesters message of equality will register far better across this country when they first stand up in front of the violent looters and protect their fellow countrymens businesses from pointless destruction!
    Isnt the looting and violence a disgrace to George Floyds legacy and families wishes for peace ?

     
    • Charles James June 2, 2020 at 5:21 pm #

      “Having learned that BLM people coming…” What exactly is the source of your (mis)information? FBI? Local law enforcement? Who? Facebook perhaps? And what exactly are “BLM people?” Where were they purportedly coming from?

      At the rally today, which still happened despite having to be “cancelled” by the event organizer, there were somewhere around 130-140 people of different races and ethnicity in attendance. There were whites, blacks, Native-Americans, Asians, and Latinos, and both the young and old. If they are the “BLM people,” then it would appear that “BLM people” are simply everyday Americans and local people from around the Bishop area who are simply fed up with the inequality and mistreatment of African-Americans and others of color.

      Equality, fairness and justice have long meant something to people in this country since its founding. It still does, and yes, it’s still a work in progress, but if today was any example, we’ll get there, and we will get there together. And it will be our youth leading the way.

      This was not an anti-American rally. It certainly was not an anti-police rally. Nor was it a group of agitators, Antifa members, or looters intent on destruction bused in from other areas of the state as some attempted to claim. Conflating the actions of those in the cities that did riot, loot, and caused unwarranted destruction on businesses and neighborhoods with the people from Bishop and the surrounding area gathered at the park today is dishonest at best, and at worst, an outright lie.

       
    • sugarmags June 3, 2020 at 7:08 am #

      Not sure what you’re talking about Greg….people in our community intimidated others from exercising their constitutional rights. What is it that makes you feel good about that? Don’t be so unpatriotic Greg….love your country, don’t hate it. Support our constitution.

       
  3. steve June 2, 2020 at 3:25 am #

    Your just inviting more violence to the area. Everyone who gives a damn about this incident, write a letter and get back to work.

     
  4. Art June 2, 2020 at 5:11 am #

    Very unfortunate that free speech, the First Amendment, civil rights, and our Constitution are being suppressed/violated. This should be a grave concern to all Americans regardless of our political affiliation, ethnicity, race, religious beliefs, etc.
    Pathetic, perverse, petrifying, and putrid!

     
  5. Brian June 2, 2020 at 6:18 am #

    Hey, Direct quote from his statement. “Use my privilege as a white man” What the heck kind of statement is that? In my non-racist mind that’s about as racist as it gets.
    SeeYa!!

     
    • Scott June 2, 2020 at 8:00 pm #

      Brian,

      I think you might be very, very confused about racism. Acknowledging one’s privilege (privilege is a spectrum) is most certainly no racism.

       
      • Peter Stevenson June 4, 2020 at 8:27 am #

        Scott, maybe saying you have white privilege is not racist to you but different groups have used that exact term to promote hatred and racism. No one has a say to what color they are born. Many Many poor people are white, many people of white ethnicity have been enslaved throughout history not just blacks but again most on the left ignore those FACTS because it doesn’t sit with their narrative.

         
  6. Kim June 2, 2020 at 6:50 am #

    Alas, thank you, Luke, for stepping up and being a helper – for trying to express what I believe our community as a whole does support: speaking out against racism, tyranny, and inequality. If it must “be led by those who are at the center of this fight…” I think Bishop has more supporters to assist than opponents to shut it down. Thank you for being the first to try to organize what so many of us want to express, loud and safely.
    A wise and eloquent man recently wrote: “We have to mobilize to raise awareness, and we have to organize and cast our ballots to make sure that we elect candidates who will act on reform…If, going forward, we can channel our justifiable anger into peaceful, sustained, and effective action, then this moment can be a real turning point in our nation’s long journey to live up to our highest ideals.”

     
  7. FishinDay395 June 2, 2020 at 6:57 am #

    Wow how sad. I don’t know if there’s anything more un-american than threatening people who are freely protesting and exercising their rights. Ironic don’t ya think that those who call themselves the most american threaten the very rights our country stands for. “Sad.”

     
    • Scott June 2, 2020 at 8:03 pm #

      FishinDay395.

      You are so right — it’s sad that people who love to proclaim their patriotism are often first in line to threaten the most American of rights. True patriots should have been cheering for and kneeling with Colin K, marching and bringing attention to the systemic problems — those actions can only result in improvement for our great country.

       
  8. dpblue June 2, 2020 at 7:02 am #

    Wow, shameful of some Bishop people to misunderstand and over react with violence.
    Shameful.

     
  9. T. Adams June 2, 2020 at 8:11 am #

    The bullies who threatened the event in honor of George Floyd want the benefits of freedom but not the responsibilities. Ignoring the rule of law can be appropriate in certain circumstances. This was not appropriate, but the bullies don’t have wisdom or a shred of nobility, so they can’t make decisions that might elevate our country.

     
  10. Bob June 2, 2020 at 8:57 am #

    I love Bishop

     
  11. Inyo K June 2, 2020 at 3:22 pm #

    As always, the violence comes not from those protesting, but from those who are entrenched in the status quo.

     
    • Scott June 2, 2020 at 8:04 pm #

      100% right, Inyo K — violence, like bigotry and hatred, is often mired in fear.

       
  12. David Dennison June 2, 2020 at 5:38 pm #

    My bet is,this event and protest was canceled more because of the internet bullies and big-mouths stating “what they’re going to do” to protect our town from “thugs and looters” than it was realistically thinking these large groups of “Anifta” and others were planning to show up and raise hell in Bishop.
    In fact,saw a few posts on another site,one guy claiming he’s going to go to Bishop,asking for others to join him to “protect and serve ” the town from the out-of-town “thugs” planning to show up…which if he did,and there was anytype of local protest,his mouth and his friends would’ve been the ones pushing the buttons,trying to cause the trouble.
    If there had been an organized protest held at the park at 9 A.M. on a Tuesday morning,and a few Law Enforcement Officers nearby to watch over things,does anyone honestly think within minutes there would’ve been looters and arsonists from the big cities of California showing up running the streets and taking over the town ?
    That is,unless of course the U.S. Army,USMC,USAF and the U,S Navy along with the National Guard were called in ahead of time to keep things under control in the Owens Valley.

     
  13. Andrew June 2, 2020 at 5:44 pm #

    “Black lives matter” Black people those are doing these protest on streets, damaging and stealing public or private properties, tearing down other community and people lives all together.
    I think black people are doing criminal activities in the name of “Black lives matter”.

    Real Justice is for those people who lost everything by these black mobs so called African American.

     
    • David Dennison June 2, 2020 at 7:19 pm #

      Andrew
      Dude,check out the photos of the looters and vandals running amuck in the big cities
      They certainly aren’t all these African Americans you claim them to be,MANY of them are white and Hispanic criminals too,all “colors”, taking advantage of a situation it seems no one can or wants to control..

       
  14. Tinner June 2, 2020 at 6:13 pm #

    The murder of George Floyd was an atrocity and I hope all four police officers spend some serious time in prison. But why do black lives matter only when it’s a cop or a white person who commits the murder when FAR more black people are killed by other blacks, don’t those lives matter?
    Nobody seems to care about the black on black murders, not politicians, not the media, not celebrities, not Al Sharpton, and not anyone who attends or organizes these protests.
    People who organize and attend these ”protests” do so, it seems, to make themselves feel good about themselves, they are the self righteous ones.

     
    • Charles James June 2, 2020 at 6:36 pm #

      Tinner, here’s the thing: The vast majority of homicide victims are killed by people of their own race. People tend to kill who they know. That is a statistical fact. Blacks kill blacks because those are the people they are around. Whites kill whites for the same reason. “You hurt people who are a lot like you. That’s how it works,” says David Kennedy, a professor and director of the National Network for Safe Communities at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City.

      It’s understood that many white people think that all black people look alike, but to think that all people rioting and looting must be black, you must have a vision or perspective problem. I’m watching a newscast from New York and I see all kinds of people attending these protests: Whites, Latinos, Asians, blacks and all types of ethnic groups. Yes, absolutely some black people are committing criminal acts under the cover of the BLM movement, but so too are others who are black. For many its an opportunity to steal, create mayhem and destroy property, but for the overwhelming majority of those at these protest, it was an opportunity to exercise their civil right to protest for redress by their government, that a very few are taking advantage of.

      Let’s hope those that those breaking the law are stopped and brought to justice. And let’s not, especially if we are white, try to pretend to know that we know much of anything about what it means to be black in this country. We don’t.

       
      • Mono Person June 2, 2020 at 7:22 pm #

        You are a racist!! “White people believe all black people look alike”. That is such an untrue statement – and I am embarrassed for you. The rest of your statement, is colored by that statement. Argue yourself out of that one, Charles…

         
        • Charles James June 2, 2020 at 7:42 pm #

          “It’s understood that many white people think that all black people look alike…” Don’t attempt to take things I say out of context. There are studies that have proven this to be the case. The reverse is also been shown. It’s easy to distinguish difference between people that look and act like you and that you are around all the time. Not so true when around others that do not. BTW, thanks for being “embarrassed” for me. Just as long as you don’t attempt to “think for me” we’ll be just fine. And did you use the word “colored” in your remarks?! I am embarrassed for you! Argue yourself out of that one, MP. End of this conversation.

           
      • Tinner June 2, 2020 at 8:54 pm #

        Charles, uh, wow. You kinda went sideways there, I never mentioned rioting and looting or even who was participating in it, you went directly to the default argument of racism.
        I thought you were better than that.
        Alright, “people tend to kill who they know” I’ll go along with that but blacks are still killing each other in much high numbers than whites are, blacks represent 15% of the population and are responsible for 50% of the murders, that’s not a race problem that’s a culture problem and nobody cares, some simply justify those murders with statements like yours, makes me sad, man.
        Nobody cares.

         
  15. BobK June 2, 2020 at 6:51 pm #

    Are You watching the news Charles? It’s more than a very few taking advantage of the situation. The last 2 days has been a lot more violence and looting than “peaceful marches”

     
    • Charles James June 2, 2020 at 7:17 pm #

      Agreed. People, especially in large groups which easily turn into mobs, can do terrible things. We often have trouble just thinking for ourselves, but when a mob mentality takes over, all bets are off. I keep watching all this and like everyone else, I would like it to stop. This virus situation is bad enough in that we feel we have little or no control over it. This feels the same way. Remember, there are many protests that have taken place around the country that have been peaceful. Why these have not, I hope we find out. Thanks for your comments.

       
  16. Good bye June 2, 2020 at 6:56 pm #

    Didnt read or understand what tinner said did you charles.

     
    • Charles James June 2, 2020 at 7:12 pm #

      I did actually. Didn’t agree with how it was said, but what’s going on isn’t as clear as it might be. Things are happening differently around the country. We’re hearing and seeing the worst of it. Let’s hope this stops…and without more violence. This situation is bothering all of us and I would hate to see a bunch of young people or more cops harmed or worse, killed, because then, the wheels will really come off this thing.

       
    • Tinner June 2, 2020 at 9:02 pm #

      Good bye,
      I’m saying most people who attend these Black Lives Matter protests don’t really care about black people being murdered, as much as they think they do. What they really care about is doing something to feel good about themselves.
      Understand that?

       
      • sugarmags June 3, 2020 at 6:57 am #

        Tinner, don’t you think there is a difference between violence among individuals and violence perpetrated by those in power? Nobody likes that there is any crime and violence, but violence perpetrated against a certain group of people by those entrusted to protect them, is something that cannot be and should not be lumped in with other types of violence.
        Certainly you can agree that community protests against community violence does not get the same press as the protests against LEO killings. NOBODY is saying that ‘regular’ violence is OK. Not sure where you come off saying that, you have very faulty logic.
        But that’s common with men.

         
        • Charles O. Jones June 3, 2020 at 11:25 am #

          Exactly.
          (except for your last sentence. lol)

           
        • Tinner June 3, 2020 at 4:29 pm #

          sugarmags, where exactly are the “community protests against community violence”?
          So, no, I cannot “certainly agree”…because they don’t exist.
          If black lives really mattered then Black Lives Matter would be in cities like Chicago on weekends like this past Memorial Day weekend where 84 people were shot and 23 of them died.
          Good grief.

           
          • Charles O. Jones June 3, 2020 at 8:22 pm #

            Are you also upset with MADD because they’re not addressing the thousands of vehicle deaths that don’t involve impaired drivers? Impaired drivers is their focus. Is that wrong?

            Maybe you don’t like the BLM name, or maybe you don’t agree with them, but their focus is to address the disproportionate use of violence against black people by THE STATE. That doesn’t mean the many other forms of violence within our communities aren’t important.

             
          • Tinner June 4, 2020 at 9:39 pm #

            Charles O,
            are you aware that blacks disproportionately commit more crimes than any other racial group, one example would be black males represent 6% of the population and yet commit 44% of the murders in this country.
            Can you define “disproportionate use of violence against black people” please? The ”violence” part specifically, please.

             
          • Charles O. Jones June 5, 2020 at 2:57 pm #

            Yeah there’s lots of stats we can throw around, Tinner. Like the fact that black people are 2.5 times more likely to be killed by police, even though they’re 1.5 times less likely to be armed when killed by the police. But as always, numbers rarely tell the entire story.

             
  17. David Dennison June 2, 2020 at 8:37 pm #

    Charles James
    IMO,the wheels will come off when and if these protests are more peaceful,without so much of the 3 % that choose to take the opportunity to loot and vandalize,like it seems what might be happening a lot less today and tonight,and then the big mouths and,not mentioning any names,trying to make it political and getting votes, still trying to be a bully, still threatening those protesting,trying to end it altogether,peaceful or not.
    And then again,in the future,when the “peace officer” that killed George Floyd,and his buddies that stood by and watched,but still not charged,go to trial.
    If him or they are found not guilty,or some slap-on-the-wrist light penalty or probation,THAT is when all hell will break loose….big time.
    How’d you like to be a lawyer and be hired or appointed as the killer cop’s defense attorney ?
    Wouldn’t wish that on my worst enemy.

     
  18. Philip Anaya June 2, 2020 at 8:46 pm #

    Saw today the news of the NBA Coaches Association forming a racial injustice and reform committee. Stephen A Smith in the report discussion spoke of what he thought white folks needed to understand about being black that struck a nerve with my own white privilege. He spoke of white folks being “comfortable in their own skin”. Comfortable in their own skin. I will never forget that. Not only have I been comfortable in my own skin but I will never forget the sense of entitlement I feel that accompanies that and my obligation to honor and respect others no matter what the color.

     
  19. HB man June 2, 2020 at 8:47 pm #

    WOW…” can’t we all just get along ” ?

     
  20. sugarmags June 3, 2020 at 7:04 am #

    Funny how Bishop rednecks are so quick to throw out the constitution. They are certainly the least patriotic of all people. They don’t understand what america stands for. I’m sick of all the fearful, ignorant people in Bishop….and no, I’m not saying all Bishop area residents are that way, but definitely too many are.

     
  21. Philip Anaya June 3, 2020 at 8:05 am #

    And one more realization for me. Women dwell in a world where they have cause to be concerned with men they encounter. I am lucky to have had the example and expectations of an amazing father who could kick anyone’s ass and at the same time treated everyone with kindness and respect. I trust I have made him proud of who I am . Even with that sorry to say, many women still feel intimidated and uncomfortable when I pass them in the aisle in the market. White men like myself need to become more aware of who they are in the world to others.
    Having the strength to become and remain a steadfast decent individual is greater than anything else I can be.

     
  22. tom k June 8, 2020 at 2:28 am #

    Kelly Thomas in fullerton, ca—take a look at this case for REAL injustice. The cops walk free not like floyds case where the cops in jail. This case for some reason doesn’t MATTER. Your fight for black civil rights is 50 years too late but we can use your help for speaking out for the voiceless americans civil rights and marginal treatment. But you probably wont because its not in your indoctrination program and you wont get that self serving warm feeling and proverbial group hug.

     
  23. sarafroi June 21, 2020 at 8:01 am #

    Seeing as Bishop is a sundown town, I guess it’s not surprising that people were threatening violence if minorities tried to exercise their amendment rights to free speech.
    Growing up I was very worried that I was racist because I didn’t have any black friends. As an adult who left, I realize that it wasn’t me who was racist, it was the town.

     
  24. Phillips June 25, 2020 at 7:17 pm #

    Intelligent people learn how to avoid confrontations with the police I have no points on my driving record no rap sheet why because I obey the laws it is as simple as that the rich rule always have and always will if you want true peace and love you need to seek the kingdom of heaven there is no pain no rascism no hate no drama in heaven if you have hate and anger inside you that is prove the devil had command of you love to all my brothers on earth

     

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