BARELY PEACEFUL, THANKS TO GUNS: Back the Blue Rally in Bloomington Sees Harassment, One Arrest

Bloomington Illinois back the blue

Threats accompanied harsh, profane words and intimidating posturing from anti-police protesters at the recent Bloomington, IL Back the Blue rally. Images by John Boch.

An armed society is a polite society. Robert Heinlein offered those words decades ago and they remain true today. In Bloomington, Illinois, last weekend’s “Back the Blue” rally to support police remained mostly peaceful, sort of, but only because malcontents and troublemakers knew that participants had guns. Lots of guns. And the will to use them to protect innocent life.

Almost 700 people attended the rally. Organizers held it on private property, surrounded by a fence so as to control access with an eye towards the safety of attendees. Not only that, but by holding the rally on private property (as opposed to a city park), carry license holders could bring their defensive tools.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

Inside the rally, a fun, celebratory atmosphere welcomed supporters of police and law and order. It seemed like a pep rally at times, oozing with patriotism and friendliness.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

 

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

The rally took on an air of seriousness as prayers were offered and speakers talked of law enforcement officers who had died in the line of duty. But by and large, the family-friendly event seemed almost festive.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

Meanwhile, about 40 radical malcontents set up immediately outside the entrance to the park and harassed latecomers as they arrived, shouting profanities and sticking cameras in their faces.

The handful of anti-police agitators was quite a motley crew.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

They had communications specialists like this one. He obstructed the entrance as much as possible and banged on a drum while offering childish chants.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

When people verbally pushed back, his favorite refrain usually involved some form of an F-bomb.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

This little drummer girl’s shirt says it all.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

These two struggled to synchronize channels on their walkie talkies.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

This man came inside posing as a supporter of the police. He proceeded – with his fly down – to where a number of kids were playing and started mouthing a variety of not-so-family-friendly remarks against police. Almost immediately, nearby men “escorted” him to the cops at the entrance where he was arrested.

It isn’t known why his fly was down or why he chose to approach the area where children were playing to heckle the crowd.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

A well-known local communist activist in the purple shirt and bandana mask tried to provoke a response from these three young people as they entered the park. As he livestreamed them, he repeatedly tried to bait them, but they weren’t buying it.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

His targets were more amused than intimidated.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

Here’s another group amused by the chants of the hecklers. The woman second from the left was a reporter from the local NPR station, WGLT, the local NPR radio.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

Another couple came strolling in and Mr. Purple Shirt tried his baiting act again.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

He almost ran into me and then his buddy with the gray union organizer branded shirt joined him shouting at me as a police sergeant intervened to push them back onto public property.

At times, threats accompanied harsh, profane words and pre-violence indicators – including physical posturing – on full display from anti-police malcontents at the Bloomington, IL Back the Blue rally. Images by John Boch.

 

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

On the street outside, passersby gave all manner of support to police working traffic control and security outside the park and across the street as the rally worked through its program.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

Aside from the 40 or so malcontents, people in the area generally supported the rule of law.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

As the rally wore on, the anti-police counter-demonstrators grew increasingly frustrated that they couldn’t interfere with the event inside the park. They grew more profane and obnoxious with many leaving early or returning to their vehicles.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

Some grew still more aggressive.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

So much so that the police stepped in to stop Mr. “Illinois is better served without ICE” from continuing his badgering pursuit of the attendee walking away from the tirade.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

By the time the rally concluded, in part because of the largely hands-off approach of the police, the anti-cop people became very aggressive.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

In this case, Mr. Man Bun’s actions and body language suggested he wanted to attack the old man in the hat on the far left.

It became so bad that after the event ended, I put the cameras down on the way out so I could have my hands free to protect my two year-old boys.

Back the Blue rally in Bloomington, IL on August 30, 2020. Image by Boch.

In the end, the event provided Bloomington area residents an opportunity to offer support to their local police. Thankfully things didn’t turn violent. In my view, that was because of the deterrence value of good guys carrying guns. Because many of the troublemakers would almost certainly have physically accosted participants if they knew their would-be victims didn’t have an effective means to fight back.

comments

  1. avatar William Wall says:

    “In this case, Mr. Man Bun’s actions and body language suggested he wanted to attack the old man in the hat on the far left.” – Editor, change “Man Bun” to “Twat Knot”.

    1. avatar Jeff says:

      I really enjoyed your reference to “man” buns.

    2. avatar KenW says:

      It would have been funny if he had swung at the older guy and got his ass kicked.

      I remember the time back in the early 70’s when I was at a bar in Guam and this young from the haircut I assume Marine took a swing at an much older gent who had told him to calm down because he was making a fool of himself. Younger guy made the mistake of swinging again when he blocked his first punch and flying fist is an understatement. He pounded the guy into the floor. We of course bought him a few drinks and wanted to know where he learned how to do that. Turned out he had been a Bantamweight boxer when younger and obviously he still had the moves.

    3. avatar Debbie W. says:

      Instead of pointing fingers at everyone but himself the head communist loud mouth should tell his useful idiot followers the story of another like minded communist loud mouth Bill Ayers. Yepper the big cheese of the weather underground Bill Ayers advised followers to “Kill Their Parents.” I wonder how many of these useful idiots actually know what kind of lowlifes they are in camp with?
      Most people would head the other way the moment they find out what a bunch of losers they are rubbing shoulders with. But not b.h.obama. He launched his political career from the home of the lily white communist/terrorist Bill Ayers.
      Besides being a mentally ill pos telling others to kill their parents Ayers designed a bomb that blew his girlfriend and two comrades to bits. That bomb was intended for soldiers attending a dance with civilians.
      Today’s residue from the sixties think they have a podium and the answers. They will find out one way or another that all they really have consumed is buckets of the same old worn out tried and failed sugarcoated marxist 💩 💩 💩 poo.

  2. avatar Optimistic Engineer says:

    Back the Blue!

    The reason we have such Chaos is they released 100,000+ felons and aren’t forcing cash bail.

    Do people not realize, in part thanks to over-regulation, how long it will take to rebuild the arson centers, err… peaceful protests?

    It took 15 years after Rhodney King, but one supermarket wasn’t rebuilt for 25 years. hmmm…

    1. avatar Rusty - Always Carry - Chains says:

      Please, are you expecting rational thought from the Antifa BLM bozos? Now that they have a second headquarters lined up, how long will it be before Amazon decides that they will be better off focusing on the new headquarters and cut staff in Seattle by 30 to 50 percent?

    2. avatar Ron says:

      And I’m sure that will be burned down again shortly.

      1. avatar Southern Cross says:

        Progressive virtue signaling Amazon has a reputation of being a hellhole employer.

  3. avatar S.Crock says:

    Imagine going to a back the blue rally in a very anti gun state. A back the blue rally where they could arrest you for having an 11 round magazine or any other multitude of egregious infringments. Absurd.

    1. avatar Larry says:

      Been to two back the blue events here in Western NY, don’t get much more anti gun then here, no problems . One had 8,000 in attendance, the other idk it ran all day with bands ,beer and food ,several hundred at least .

      Zero counter “ protesters .”

      1. avatar Optimistic Engineer says:

        I didn’t even know New York threw any back the blue rallies!

        Somehow the media missed that!

        1. avatar MADDMAXX says:

          The media “MISSES” a lot of stuff…

    2. avatar Texas Twostep says:

      Actually, there are no state wide laws in Illinois banning magazines of certain capacities. I lived most of my life in Illinois until recently, and I could own all the same firearms I own in Texas. What you are referring to is a very small portion of the state near Chicago. Places like Bloomington are very rural and typically very pro 2nd amendment. I worked in Bloomington for years and used to frequent a shooting range there as well.

    3. avatar drunkEODguy says:

      the lolberts are at it again. Imagine remaining in a party that’s core ideas are the antithesis of communism having its presidential candidate openly back an organization self-described by its leaders as communist. Whew

    4. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

      more than half the counties have pased sanctuary resolutions.
      it’s cook and some of the collars that hate.

  4. avatar Rusty - Always Carry - Chains says:

    What, the BLM, Antifa, Communist, defund the police, non-binary bunch got all aggro with good hard working worthwhile people for making them look bad? I guess they are afraid mom is going to throw them out of the basement and move to a retirement center in Florida.

    1. avatar PMinFl says:

      don’t want them in Florida.

  5. avatar The Crimson Pirate says:

    Our side has the hotter chicks.

    1. avatar Kyle says:

      I think that goes without saying!

    2. avatar drunkEODguy says:

      slow down there, lets just start with the fact that our side can definitively say they are indeed actually chicks.

      1. avatar MADDMAXX says:

        our side can definitively say they are indeed actually chicks.

        AND, they are obviously proud to identify as such….

    3. avatar frank speak says:

      …Oh, yeah!…

    4. avatar Joe Biden wants to sniff my hair says:

      ummm… I would have attended just to see the woman in photo number 14 from the top…..

      Wow!

  6. avatar Dennis Sumner says:

    What a fu**in ugly demented lookin bunch of anarchists! Only thing that improve would improve their looks is a hole in their foreheads.

    1. avatar Miner49er says:

      “Only thing that improve would improve their looks is a hole in their foreheads.“

      How precious, we even have Dennis the Menace on this forum!

      Well, so much for that pesky constitution thingy…

  7. avatar Old Guy in Montana says:

    Thank you for the informative report.

    What can you say regarding 40 something idiots collectively dragging down Humanity’s IQ?

    They are virtual black holes of stupidity…the more they aggregate, the stupider they become….the stupider they become…the more they aggregate until (hopefully) a last, final implosion creating a 0.25″ ball of neutronium from their combined masses.

    To all the Trolls on TTAG I remind you that:

    TANSTAAFL*

    *Robert Heinlein, “The Moon is a Harsh Mistress”

    1. avatar Paul says:

      “Black holes of stupidity”???

      DAS RACISSSSSS!!!! BLM gonna have a cryfest over that!

      1. avatar MADDMAXX says:

        BLM gonna have a cryfest over that!

        Not to mention a handful of Trolls, snowflakes and crybabies that lurk in the shadows of mommy’s basement and interject THEIR wisdoms and helpful hints to live by…

        1. avatar Taste That Boot Choad says:

          🥾 👅

        2. avatar MADDMAXX says:

          And here’s one now….

        3. avatar Ing says:

          Looks like you triggered TTAG’s resident poop-flinging monkey.

      2. avatar Southern Cross says:

        No tears please, it is a waste of good suffering!

  8. avatar LastOfTheOldOnes says:

    “Only thing that improve would improve their looks is a hole in their foreheads.”

    Hehehehehehehe…….I believe a double tap would just reinforce that point 🙂

    But you’re quite correct about their ugliness. I think that being entirely humorless and unable to laugh at themselves is the reason their internal ugly creepiness overshadows any chance they might have of being normal human beings…and it shows.

    The most terrible thing they face is the laughter of normal people at their weirdness. That what definitely sets them off and make them lose the remainder of their minds.

    1. avatar Ing says:

      There’s more than one option. Being sane would improve their looks tremendously, but sadly, it’s not likely to happen.

      I’ve found that true, inner ugliness always leaks out. Even if they were otherwise physically attractive, they’d still be repulsive.

  9. avatar Matt in Oklahoma says:

    You took kids to that environment?

    1. avatar Matt in Texas says:

      Yes, why not?

      1. avatar Matt in Oklahoma says:

        Matt in Texas
        Between you asking and him doing it some of y’all are in serious denial of what’s really going on. I know y’all mean well and want it to be ok but things aren’t right that are going on. Situational awareness dictates until things normalize. I don’t want to see any of y’all and especially your children hurt or killed. It’s not worth it to prove a point or dare them.

    2. avatar former water walker says:

      I agree Matt…in Oklahoma. Putting your kid’s in harm’s way makes me question one’s judgement. And I have 2 pairs of son’s from 2 very different wives. I’m cool if you want to back cop’s(too bad you didn’t bash a few empty BLM/Antiloser heads).

      1. avatar Mat in Texas says:

        Given the presence of law enforcement throughout the event, it would seem to be a low threat.
        However not a place for younger children for sure.

    3. avatar Montana Actual says:

      Is it any different than the modern liberal agenda in schools? I’d say that’s more harmful.

      1. avatar Matt in Oklahoma says:

        I’m not sure where your kids go to school but my grandkids aren’t in that type of environment. We all watch and participate to ensure it. It’s very different.
        Y’all stay safe

  10. avatar Jeff says:

    It is sad that peaceful protestors feel the need to act this way. You cannot have a good time nowadays without some buthurt communist or BLM idiot showing up.

  11. avatar Roger J says:

    The crowd should have left this bunch on the ground eaten to a pulp. That is what push back looks like.

  12. avatar hawkeye says:

    The Black Lives Matter folks tried to host a couple protests in my town. They hauled in a couple vans full of their professionals and props and set up shop on the downtown square. I noted that most of the locals that were with them were one of two groups:

    1. Well-known local hoodlums looking to score;

    2. Local families who were there to take photos of their kids with the bicycle cops and K-9 officer, who were kinda hanging around the perimeter.

    They were otherwise pretty much ignored, and it petered out and died within a couple days. They even tried to hold a parade, which was even more of a nonevent. It was hilarious. About two weeks later, we held the annual K-9 fundraiser festival, and it was the best attended one yet, 10 years running.

  13. avatar Marcus Aurelius Tarkus says:

    The escalating aggressiveness of the “peaceful” counter-demonstrators in Bloomington reminded me of the woman eating her lunch who was recently set upon by another “peaceful” mob. They demanded that she raise her fist in the commie salute and pronounce some slogan. When she declined, one male mobster got right in her face and insisted that she comply. That got me to thinking what I might do in such a situation.

    Then the idea light came on. If badgered to raise my fist in support of the marxist cause, I would invite the badger in close to my face to reiterate its demand. Meanwhile, I would clench my unarmed fist in the low ready position. When the badger repeated its order, I would thrust my fist straight upward in “compliance.” The badger’s lower jaw would, (un)fortunately, be in the direct trajectory of my compliant fist.

    Things might go badly for me thenceforth, but the moment would be immensely satisfying.

    1. avatar Montana Actual says:

      This is the way.

    2. avatar UpInArms says:

      I’d put my fist out, raise my middle finger, and ask if it was raised high enough.

      1. avatar Southern Cross says:

        Darn. You beat me to it.

  14. avatar DJ says:

    I don’t think we’ve had any “back the blue” events here in Az, but…
    the last BLM event they tried to have here, not enough people showed up, so it was cancelled. The one before that, reports stated “Protesters were seen knocking over traffic cones.”
    I laughed so hard I nearly peed myself. God Bless Arizona.
    And if he wants to take his kids to a protest, it’s still mostly a free country.

  15. avatar Chris T in KY says:

    “This man came inside posing as a supporter of the police. He proceeded – with his fly down – to where a number of kids were playing”

    I sure after they have made it legal for women to walk around with large sagging exposed breast. As they do in Austin Texas. Their next step will be to make it legal for a man to walk around, in front of children, exposing his penis and testicles. Like they do at Tranny Bedtime Stories.

    1. avatar Southern Cross says:

      Shame he can’t get put on a sex offender list, if he isn’t already on one.

  16. avatar possum says:

    Put down the candy and step away from the children. Maybe his fly was open because it’s like a barn door and a sick horse, what can’t get up can’t get out

    1. avatar Miner49er says:

      “Maybe his fly was open because it’s like a barn door and a sick horse, what can’t get up can’t get ou”

      Give Jerry Falwell ‘Junior’ a break, he said he had unzipped his pants so his girlfriend would feel more comfortable about her pregnant belly.

  17. avatar FormerParatrooper says:

    Has anyone noticed vehicles with blm signage, in Illinois and many other States I have been in, that these vehicles are driving 25 plus the speed limits?

  18. avatar Libtarded says:

    “only because malcontents and troublemakers knew that participants had guns. Lots of guns. And the will to use them to protect innocent life.”

    And it’s the gun owners who get arrested and charged when they use their guns in self-defense, like Kyle Rittenhouse. The violent protesters get released by the communist prosecutors who support them.

    You can argue all you want that it’s not the police’s fault that rioters are being released, but they’re complicit when they arrest citizens for defending themselves, or for not complying with unconstitutional covid lock-down diktats.

    I only back the blue cuz they’re a an enemy of the red, not cuz they’re an ally of gun owners, or Americans.

  19. avatar birda says:

    All the Cock Smooches will find it harder and harder. I think the True Americas / Patriots have had enough. Bullies always find the quiet man will turn and say enough is enough.

  20. avatar Miner49er says:

    There are nuts on both sides:

    “A Florida man who referred to himself as an “Antifa hunter” was sentenced to more than three years in prison Monday for making racially motivated threats and cyberstalking in the wake of the 2017 United the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

    Daniel McMahon, 32, pleaded guilty in April to federal charges of cyberstalking and racially motivated threats to interfere with an election, the US Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Virginia said in a statement Monday.

    “This defendant weaponized social media to threaten and intimidate his perceived political enemies and propagate a violent white-supremacist ideology,” said US Attorney Thomas Cullen. “Because his online activity crossed the boundary between protected First Amendment expression and unlawful threats and harassment, he will spend considerable time in federal prison.”

  21. avatar Miner49er says:

    There are nuts on both sides:

    “ A California community college instructor with ties to the far-right, anti-government “boogaloo” movement was in custody on suspicion of sending two dozen misogynistic and threatening letters to a county health officer involving the coronavirus pandemic, authorities said Tuesday.

    Alan Viarengo, 55, was arrested last week and investigators seized 138 firearms, thousands of rounds of ammunition and explosive materials from his home in Gilroy, the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office said.

    Viarengo was charged with felony counts of stalking and threatening a public official after authorities said the letters were sent to county Health Director Dr. Sara Cody. He has not entered a plea. His bail was revoked and he remains in jail.”

    1. avatar jwm says:

      There are nuts on both sides. Proceeds to only reference those on the right.

      Typical miner. Half truths at best. And a half truth is a whole lie.

      1. avatar Miner49er says:

        It is interesting that you apparently didn’t notice all the posters comments about left wing nut jobs above.

        And you also might notice in those comments, the majority seem to call for extra judicial punishments, up to and including summary execution, for crimes as simple as jaywalking.

        It seems you folks often claim “liberals ignore the constitution“, but when push comes to shove everyone on this list is all too ready to ignore the constitution’s rights and protections and become the judge, jury and executioner in their own little brain.

        I love the smell of hypocrisy in the morning, it reminds me of a tractor pull.

        1. avatar jwm says:

          You’re making up comments in your head again. Nothing new there.

          Which doesn’t change the fact that you only pointed out the handful of nuts on the winning side. Half truths are whole lies.

          And you still have yet to condemn the pedos and other felons making up the ranks of your antifa brethren.

          But that’s ok. You are the best ally Trump has around here.

        2. avatar Miner49er says:

          “You’re making up comments in your head again.”

          Really? Here’s my favorite from this very thread:

          “Only thing that improve would improve their looks is a hole in their foreheads.”

          I will point out, that I have never advocated the killing of anyone, leftist or right wing, male or female.

          And anyone can condemn the bad behavior of others, that’s not a reliable way to measure the content of a person‘s character.

          Rather than curse the darkness, I prefer to light a candle.

        3. avatar jwm says:

          Every one on this list is now down to one comment? Anyone can condemn bad behavior. And you started 2 comments with insults about nuts.

          As for lighting a candle. Someone has to provide a flame for the firebombs your fascist buddies are throwing.

          miner. You are full of shit. Thanks to you Trump will get his second and probably even a third term And the beauty of it is you’re like the msm. You just aren’t smart enough to know how much help you’re being to returning America to the 50’s. Dude, the south should tear all those confederate statues down and erect new ones in your honor.

        4. avatar Miner49er says:

          Jaybird, do you think that re-electing Trump will “return America to the 50’s“?

          You mean with the highest income tax bracket was 91%?

          Yep, I would love to see a return to those days, when the wealthy paid their fair share for the profits earned on the back of America’s workers.

        5. avatar jwm says:

          We’ll see how happy you are when Trump gets his second term.

        6. avatar Miner49er says:

          Whatever.

          As for myself, I will be joining the ranks of Americans fighting soldiers, and vote for Joe Biden:

          “A new poll from Military Times showed Trump’s favorability rate plunging among both active-duty troops and officers. Perhaps more significantly, 41 percent plan to vote for former Vice President Joe Biden versus 37 percent for Trump. 
          Vote Vets said there was a simple reason for it.
          “Because Donald Trump disrespects those who serve,” the narrator said, then listed all of the ways the president had failed to protect the troops, including the Russian bounty scandal.
          “Trump’s refusal to defend America’s national security is dangerous,” the spot noted. ”His refusal to stand up for our troops is humiliating. His threat to deploy active-duty troops against American citizens is unconstitutional.” 

        7. avatar Old Guy in Montana says:

          You have the most selective memory I’ve ever witnessed…guess that comes with the trolling credentials?

          Your rhetoric reminds me of when I was stationed in Italy during one of their elections…multiple banners over the roads (hung from streetlights) proudly proclaiming…”Vota Communista!“.

          I seem to remember that Obama (and by default Biden) treating the DoD members with complete disdain…anyone remember the umbrella?

  22. avatar Wood says:

    Right. So guys who send letters are a real threat and must be sent to prison. But those who actually Burn Loot and Murder, as well as those who finance them and/or provide cover for them, must be released. Clearly, we need to drain more than the swamp.

  23. avatar Chris Mallory says:

    Yep, back the blue because supporting entitled snowflake, big government socialist thugs just because they wear costume jewelry and carry pistols makes all the sense in the world. Especially since these thugs will be the ones coming to take your guns the first time a government employee gives them the order to.

    Love the “unions are bad unless they are cop unions sucking the wealth from the productive citizens” mindset.

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