SC rallies – KKK member helped by Black policeman

 In opinion, Politics

On Saturday,  two rallies in Charleston, South Carolina threatened to be “too hot to handle” in more ways than one. One rally was scheduled by the Ku Klux Klan against the taking down of the Confederate Flag, and the other was the New Black Panthers protesting because they felt the taking down of the flag wasn’t enough.


Director of SC Public Safety, Leroy Smith helps a white supremacist to safety

  Into the mix came 98 degree heat and a black police officer who followed his training instead of the politics. But he wasn’t just any police officer, he was Leroy Smith, the head of South Carolina Public Safety.  It had to take a great deal of personal strength to help the white supremacist  who was suffering from severe heat. The photo was taken by  Rob Godfrey and at this point has been shared on Twitter over 3,000 times.

The rallies


NBP protesters burned the Confederate flag in Charleston

Only 5 people were arrested during the rallies, and 23 people needed medical attention, primarily from the heat. Police kept the protesters separated. Aside from yelling and name calling, police had control of  the situation. Not all on either side of the rallies were actually members of the conflicting groups. 


KKK protesters in Charleston

About 40 members of the KKK marched around the Capitol with the Confederate Battle flag to the jeers of the crowd. In total, 300 members had applied for the permit to rally. Officials say that there were about 2,000 people in attendance. One of the KKK members stopped to give a Nazi salute on the Capitol steps.

Mr. Smith has given us a tiny glimpse of someone moving past the hate and into kindness for a fellow human being. Just like that black pastor who reached out to touch the white veteran who was grieving, there are smatterings of kindness among us.

The KKK member may try to flush that situation out of his mind, or he may pretend that being touched by a black officer was somehow revolting, but it won’t work. He will remember that incident until the day he dies – the day a black man reached out to help him in spite of his KKK affiliations.

Police keep the protesters separated.


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