For approximately two months, Montana’s vocal minority has been pounding the pavement and holding signs in the Big Sky State, often with ugly dispositions toward law enforcement. Emboldened and outraged at the death of a petty criminal named George Floyd in Minneapolis at the hands of Officer Derek Chauvin, a group of mostly millennials educated at Montana’s two public universities have shown up weekly to protests organized by out-of-state dark money groups (Bozeman’s protests, for example, were organized by the Communist Action Group).
However, the other side – which values and supports the police in their difficult and dangerous job of keeping Montana safe – have rallied together to outnumber the Black Lives Matter protestors in Bozeman, most of whom have gone on to other activist causes and their crowds have dwindled.
Entitled ‘Defend the Police’ or ‘Back the Blue,’ the rally was held on Friday night in the streets of Bozeman, the largest city in Gallatin County. Hundreds of vehicles, including pickup trucks, semi-trucks, cars, ATVs, and at least one school bus met in a parking lot to adjust their Trump flags, Gadsen Flags, and pro-police signs before dragging Main Street.
However, the crowd wasn’t without opposition. Counter-protestors behaved in an unruly and unlawful fashion, with some reporting vandalism and assault on the part of the angry millennials and almost all reporting swear-words, middle-fingers, and verbal assaults being lobbed in their direction.
For example, the Facebook page dedicated to the rally posted a photo of one man who had committed “theft and assault” on the lawful protestors (see below).
Some even reported violent speech being directed toward others with their children in tow.
Henry Hardin (left), a Black Lives Matter activist who also protests against gun rights, tried to lead the meager counter-demonstration.
He claimed in social media that a “detective for the sheriff’s department” threatened him with “incitement” for forming a counter-protest. Like most of the accusations from the Black Lives Matter group, his claim is unsupported by facts or documentation.
On Instagram, Hardin called the rally (before it had even happened) a “racist” and “fascist” rally (see below).
Like Hardin’s claim of oppression, other counter-protestors had the police called on them for throwing water bottles at the lawful rally attenders and then claimed to the police it was in retaliation for watching them harass a black man on the city streets (there is no evidence of this occurring, either, and no such black man was found).