Going out of your way to argue with and then allegedly threaten protesters with a firearm is never a good idea.
From the Associated Press:
Police in South Carolina have arrested a man accused of pointing a gun at some “Black Lives Matter” demonstrators as he drove past the State House.
Authorities said Walter Peter Matulis Jr. was charged Saturday with pointing and presenting a firearm at a person, news outlets reported.
Two groups of protesters were outside the Capitol Friday on the fifth anniversary of the Confederate flag’s removal from the grounds. One gathered to support the Confederate flag; the other carried “Black Lives Matter” signs in opposition to this group.
Kamison Burgess, who was among these counter-protesters, told The State newspaper that this man driver stopped in the road, stuck his middle finger out at them, said “All Lives Matter” and pointed a gun at them before driving away.
Columbia police investigated using video taken by protesters, interviewed 64-year-old Matulis at his home and then arrested him. Pointing a firearm is a felony. It’s unclear whether Matulis had an attorney who could comment on his behalf.
The AP’s account is…incomplete. Here’s what The State reported:
Protester Kamison Burgess said the driver “pulled up sticking his middle finger out.”
“He stopped in the middle of the road at the green light and said ‘All lives matter,’” Burgess said. “One of the girls, she was explaining ‘Yes, all lives matter, but they can’t matter at the moment until Black lives matter.’
“At that point in time, he drove up a little more, the light was still green, and he started fidgeting around inside his car, and he pointed a gun out at us,” Burgess said.
If that account of what happened is accurate, it sounds like the driver was looking for a confrontation. And for all the fatuous comparisons that will probably be made to the McCloskeys, this isn’t at all the same thing. In St. Louis, a crowd of protesters trespassed in a private neighborhood and reportedly threatened a homeowner and his wife who were defending their home and property.