It’s a Riot!

What’s your definition of a riot?

I know my definition includes any of the following:

  • Bottles or other hard objects being thrown
  • Police in riot gear using tear gas or other crowd control measures
  • Fires being set and looting occurring

However, according to the folks over at the Daily Scoff, this is what constitutes a riot:

Now call me crazy, but I don’t consider that a riot. Now this is a riot:

Like I said, call me crazy, but I don’t see how the first picture could even remotely be construed as being a “riot.”


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9 thoughts on “It’s a Riot!

  1. First off, thanks for reading. Now my sources:

    MILWAUKEE, June 24 (UPI) — A near riot erupted outside Milwaukee County’s main welfare office, where disaster-related food aid was being distributed, officials said.

    “They just went crazy down there, just totally crazy,” said Charline Britt of Milwaukee, who said she was trampled as the doors opened.

    (more from the AP on that incident)

    Charline Britt was crushed against a door and passed out. She felt feet stomp on her back as people rushed into the center when the doors opened at 8 a.m., she said.

    JSONLINE — The chaos that erupted outside Milwaukee County’s main welfare office Monday…

    CHICAGO TRIBUNE (AP) – Milwaukee police say some 2500 people fought and shoved each other on Monday…

    You’re welcome to peruse all the articles for yourself:

    I’ll readily admit to seeing this incident through the eyes of a cynic, if you’ll be equally honest about your rose-colored glasses…


  2. I read the articles you referenced, but just because some writer says it was a “near riot” or “chaos” doesn’t make it so.

    Further, the point of my post was to point out the difference between what you consider a riot and what most other rational folks would consider to be a riot. You relied primarily on two photos as proof of said “riot,” yet in the photos you relied on, folks appear to be waiting in line in an orderly fashion. Heck, there’s two children sitting on milk crates in one of the photos, a fact that seems to undermine the assertion that a riot was taking place.

    Having seen the photos and read the articles, I can honestly say the articles don’t seem congruent with the photos. Sure, the articles described a “near riot” and “chaos,” but the photos clearly paint a different picture of what was really happening.

  3. The photos (from the day AFTER the riot… I mean, peaceful trampling) were captioned for their specific context. In your defense, the font may have been too small. Or perhaps the words too big.

    You’ll perhaps recall that stories about Bill Clinton having sex with Monica Lewinski featured photos of the pair not having sex. Stories about the recent death of George Carlin depicted him alive.

    I’m certain none of this was done specifically to confuse you, but on behalf of the various news agencies that I’ve shamelessly plagiarized for your entertainment, we’re all tremendously sorry if it has.

    Please keep me in the loop on how your argument with the right-wing fear-mongers at UPI, the AP, and the Journal-Sentinel goes. It’s time somebody took them to task for their conservative agendas…


  4. So here’s the article the photos were taken from:


    Now the article was posted on 06/23/08, which unless I’m mistaken was yesterday, which also happened to be the first day of the “riot.” Interestingly enough, both the photos on your blog are included in the article, and one includes the following caption (I’ve added some emphasis to assist you):

    The line stretches for blocks Monday as people wait outside the Coggs Center to apply for food vouchers. Police and deputies were called in to calm the crowds.

    Monday….isn’t that the same day the supposed riot took place, not the day AFTER?

    Thanks for playing!

  5. I sit corrected. The photos were taken after (but not the day after) the riot/trampling/property destruction took place, not during.

    Which was, I believe, my point all along…


  6. For the record, I did witness the so called “riot” with my own eyes. I have seen more pandemonium on the Friday after Thanksgiving at any given electronics, toy or department store. With more numerous and more severe injuries to boot.

    It is also interesting that the local media failed to point out that this same benefits were available on Friday and Saturday at the same location, without incident.

    Also for the record, people involved said that the police actually made things worse at first by trying to force even more people into the building before the staff was ready for them.

  7. The real question is how many in that line were actual victims of the flooding and how many were just in line for a freebie handout that they could get away with. After all they are entitled to their lifestyle.

  8. Cap,

    I think one of these years you should travel to the Chicago Loop for some Day After shopping! Now that’s just an utter disaster. Just trying to cross Michigan Avenue with a car becomes a crime to do.

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