What to do When a Protest Turns into Rioting and Looting

protest in hong kong
Protest in Hong Kong

2020 has been a crazy year to say the least. From the coronavirus lockdown to the protests for social justice. But, what happens when a peaceful protests turn into riots and looting? Here’s a list of what to do when a protest turns into rioting and looting:

1. Go with a group to protest

Even before you go to a protest make sure you are using the buddy system. Go with at least 1 or 2 other close friends that you know and trust.

2. Have a plan and know your exits

If shit hits the fan, then make sure you have a plan to get out of there.

If your goal is to peacefully protest and all of a sudden the protest turns violent have a plan to avoid the violence by knowing the exits. Make sure you are not entering the violent areas. The last thing you want is to be surrounded leaving you with no exits to run to in case of emergency.

3. Recognize suspicious people and activity

If you are walking along and you start to see people surrounding a group of other people while facing outboard, it’s time to go.

If you are walking along and you see someone or a group of people starting to throw things or start rioting, it’s time to go.

If you see people with hidden weapons such as guns, knives, clubs and potential projectiles, it’s time to go.

You know the signs when you see them. If you see a potentially dangerous about to unfold in front of you, then it is time to go.

4. Don’t enter the violent areas

At a protest, people are generally either walking down a street together or congregated at a park listen to speeches.

During the course of these protest there have been times when people start to become violent. As much as you may want to see what’s happening, it is best to just go the other way. You may be peacefully protesting, but if you find yourself in a violent area of a protest you are now rioting.

5. Don’t join in by rioting and looting

“Would you jump off a bridge if all your friends did?”

This age old question ceases to die, but it is so true.

If everyone around you is rioting and looting stores but you know it’s wrong to do so, then would you join them? Hopefully the answer is no. You know it’s wrong and even if everyone else is doing it does not make it right.

We are living in crazy times. It is always great to voice your opinions when the country is not listening, but rioting and looting will not solve anything. This is especially true when people riot and loot the neighborhoods they are trying to help.

Be smart about your choices and don’t give in to mob rule or the mob mentality.

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