Despite calls to stay away, out-of-town counter protesters still showed up at the St. Pete Pier last weekend
Last week, St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman called for out-of-town protesters to stay away from the city over the weekend. That didn’t stop folks with nothing better to do from ignoring Kriseman on Saturday Oct. 3.
According to Creative Loafing Tampa Bay photographer Dave Decker, no more than two dozen counter-protesters showed up.
One Fort Myers pro-police protester told WFLA about Black Lives Matter demonstrators “Burning, looting, destroying our cities.” When a WFLA reporter told the man that destruction of property hasn’t happened in St. Pete, he then referenced a video of a confrontation between protesters and a couple having dinner as to why he came from out of town. “You don’t have the right to be a provocateur, to instigate and to intimidate people while they’re eating dinner,” he said.
The video, which went viral on Twitter with little context (some reports say the diner in questions hurled a racial slur at a Jewish protester), has been viewed millions of times and co-opted by anti-BLM right-wingers who’ve organized to stand up for the diners. In the days after the video was posted, a St. Pete protester was almost shot. —Ray Roa
10/03/2020 | Photos by Dave Decker