I apparently am not the only one concerned about protests in Wisconsin featuring confederate flags or firearms when the participants are opposing the governor’s stay at home orders. Now the New York Times is reporting that the treasurer of the Wisconsin Republican Party, Brian Westrate, is asking anyone planning on attending the Friday protests in Madison…to leave that stuff at home.
Brian Westrate, the treasurer of the Republican Party of Wisconsin, posted to a private Facebook group for organizers and some attendees of the Madison rally, asking people not to bring emblems of causes other than resisting the stay-at-home order.
“Ok folks, I implore you, please leave Confederate flags and/or AR15s, AK47s, or any other long guns at home,” Mr. Westrate wrote. “I well understand that the Confederacy was more about states rights than slavery. But that does not change the truth of how we should try to control the optics during the event.”
In an interview, Mr. Westrate acknowledged writing the post and said it may be futile to ask the rally participants to limit the variety of their political motivations.
“Ideally, people should leave Trump stuff at home,” he said. “But you can’t hold a rally in favor of the First Amendment and then become over-draconian in terms of telling people how to dress.”
Quite frankly, I should let the protesters shoot themselves in the foot so to speak…by being idiots and bringing things into the conversation that don’t belong there. But I would really prefer being able to have the conversations that need to be had without the detritus of war and confrontation.
Thank you Mr. Westrate for being one of the adults in the room (and if you attend, wear a mask, wash your hands, and don’t stand too close to one another).