Should Trump Supporters Protest if He Is Arrested?

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Following former President Donald Trump’s announcement that he anticipates being arrested, Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) asserted that Republicans need not protest the potential impending arrest as the “communist Democrats” have already determined their destiny. The lawmaker took to Twitter on multiple occasions on Saturday to express her views regarding Trump’s Truth Social message, in which he revealed that illegal leaks from the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office had caused him to believe that he would be arrested over the Stormy Daniels issue.

In her initial tweet on Saturday morning, Greene criticized the Department of Justice and the Manhattan DA, claiming that the prospective arrest was “ALL FOR POLITICS!”

“This is what they do in communist(s) countries to destroy their political opponents!” she wrote. “Republicans in Congress MUST subpoena these communists and END this! We have the power to do it, and we also have the power to DEFUND their salaries and departments! Enough of this!”

A few hours later, Greene responded to Trump’s request that people “protest” and “take our nation back” by saying Republicans don’t need to protest the “communist Democrats” and the party’s “political weaponization.”

“These idiots are sealing their own fate in 2024 because the silent majority has two feelings right now about the current regime,” the lawmaker tweeted. “Fear and anger.”

Fox News noted:

The potential indictment stems from the yearslong investigation surrounding Trump’s alleged hush money scandal involving porn star Stormy Daniels. Toward the end of the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump’s then-lawyer Michael Cohen sent $130,000 to Daniels to prevent her from disclosing her 2006 affair with Trump. Trump reimbursed Cohen through installments.

This comes as New York authorities sent a memo designed to prepare for potential riots if Trump is indicted and arrested. “Our law enforcement partners will ensure that any specific or credible threats against the office will be fully investigated and that the proper safeguards are in place so all 1,600 of us have a secure work environment,” the memo read.

So, is Greene right? Should conservatives stage demonstrations if the former president is arrested?

I say: Why the hell not?

I might be in the minority in this position. Many other commentators have suggested that protesting would be an ill-advised idea. It is understandable considering that it only takes a few rabble-rousers – real or fed – to ignite violence.

This is possible, but I think it is more likely that folks on the right learned their lesson from J6 and would be loath to give the Democrats and their friends in the activist media another political weapon to use against them. Conservatives and Republicans are perfectly capable of protesting peacefully. The problem is, they don’t do it.

Those on the left have absolutely no problem getting out in the streets and making their views known to the world. Whether their protests are justified or not, they know how to mobilize and get valuable media attention centered on their cause.

On the other hand, conservatives and libertarians have been reticent about exercising this right that the First Amendment protects. But we need to break out of that mindset. If thousands of people were to turn out in their major cities – especially in New York City – it would draw even more attention to the corruption that is all too prevalent in our federal, state, and local governments. It might catch the eyeballs of people who are more ambivalent about these problems and make them more amenable to the prospect of fighting for liberty against the growing authoritarianism that is occurring in the U.S. today.

One of the main reasons why our governments are able to engage in corruption is because we let them. They know they will never be held accountable for their machinations. Moreover, I believe most Americans are ignorant of the extent to which corruption is rife in our major institutions. They certainly know about the issues the left highlights – but not necessarily the issues about which conservatives are concerned.

This is a clear case of the left wielding the power of the state to target a political opponent. Unless there is some other evidence that emerges, it is difficult to see it as anything but an attempt to prevent Trump from becoming president again in 2024. It is entirely appropriate to protest against this type of authoritarianism. I’ve said before that conservatives and libertarians must stop playing defense. It is time to go on the offense.

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