Protesters at any political event are nothing new, but this year at the RNC in Cleveland, there’s certainly been an influx of them due in part to the GOP’s presidential nominee. Tensions between Trump supporters and anti-Trump activists exploded today over a flag-burning protest outside of the Quicken Loans Arena. According to USA Today, the man responsible for the flag burning not only set the stars and stripes on fire, but accidentally caught his leg on fire during the incident. The flames spread to other protesters as 200 local area law enforcement officers tried to extinguish the small blaze. During the incident, two officers were allegedly “punched and pushed” in the process of putting out the fire, receiving minor injuries. There were other injuries to protesters but were minor as well.
The man in charge of the flag-burning protest was Gregory “Joey” Johnson, a member of a group called Revcom, an organization that describes themselves as “the voice of the revolutionary communist party.” During the protest, Johnson and 15 other protesters were arrested. Two of those arrested have been charged with felony assault on a police officer, whereas others who were arrested were booked on various misdemeanors including failing to disperse. It is legal to burn a flag “as long as it isn’t used to incite a crowd.” Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams told USA Today that since the RNC started on Monday, there has been only 22 arrests, stating “so far, so good.”
(Via USA Today)