go raiders
January 27, 2003 10:54 AM   Subscribe

go raiders just dont move to my city!
posted by specialk420 (72 comments total)
"If they would've won, we wouldn't be doing this."

posted by machaus at 10:56 AM on January 27, 2003

"We lost, and that bothers a lot of the young people out here," said Hannibal Willis, a member of the rap group Hazardous Materials. "A lot of them are real Raider friends. I ain't gonna lie -- if we had won, we would have done the same thing, but milder."

posted by damn yankee at 10:59 AM on January 27, 2003

No kidding. Tell that to the people of Denver in 1999.
posted by jonson at 10:59 AM on January 27, 2003

So what happens when the bread and circuses are the cause of the rioting rather than the preventer of it?
posted by Space Coyote at 11:01 AM on January 27, 2003

"It's the Raiders' fault -- blame it on the Raiders," Akela Thomas, 19, shouted. "If they would've won, we wouldn't be doing this."

And if that isn't proof enough of their stupidity, they looted a paint store. A paint store.
posted by starvingartist at 11:01 AM on January 27, 2003

how many of these folks would has scoffed at this
posted by specialk420 at 11:06 AM on January 27, 2003

Proof that hooliganism isn't a solely European thing. Now what would happen if 1000 British hooligans met 1000 disgruntled Raiders fans...?
posted by dazed_one at 11:08 AM on January 27, 2003

"Raiders rule. F-- the police."

posted by lotsofno at 11:13 AM on January 27, 2003

The power of pride...
posted by botono9 at 11:13 AM on January 27, 2003

Now what would happen if 1000 British hooligans met 1000 disgruntled Raiders fans...?

Depends if you let the Raiders fans have their guns.

Unarmed, definitely hooligans. It would be akin to casting Bloodlust on your Orcs in Warcraft 2 to massacre a bunch of peasants.
posted by Stan Chin at 11:14 AM on January 27, 2003

"Depends if you let the Raiders fans have their guns."

Raider fans always have guns. I'm pretty sure it's an Oakland city statute.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 11:15 AM on January 27, 2003

in other news, police in grand rapids, mi were not required to quell a minor disturbance after local resident quonsar celebrated the defeat of the aliens in independence day by standing on his deck and shivering 'woo. yay.' the film, shown on fox opposite some obscure sporting event, failed to incite rioting nationwide. "i ain't gonna lie", said quonsar, member of obscure local garage bands during the 70's. "i would have done the same thing if the aliens had won, only in klingon".
posted by quonsar at 11:19 AM on January 27, 2003

What is wrong with people anyway? I have to say I was so proud during World Cup watching the way Korea acted. HUGE throngs of people (hundreds of thousands), not a single arrest and we even cleaned up afterwards.

I'll never understand fan violence.
posted by Baesen at 11:20 AM on January 27, 2003

Now what would happen if 1000 British hooligans met 1000 disgruntled Raiders fans...?

"I'm over there in England you know, trying to get news of the riots, and all the Brit people are trying to sympathize with me… 'Oh Bill, crime is horrible. If it's any consolation, crime is horrible here too.' Shut up. This is Hobbiton and I'm Bilbo Hicks, okay? This is the land of fairies and elves. You oughta see English crime. If only we had crime like this. It's hilarious, you don't know reading the front page or the comic section over there. I swear to god, I read an article on the front page of the paper one day in England, 'Yesterday some hooligans knocked over a dustbin in Shaftesbury.' Ooooh, the hooligans are loose, the hooligans are loose! What if they become ruffians? I'd hate to be a dustbin in Shaftesbury tonight."
-- Bill Hicks. It had to be quoted
posted by soundofsuburbia at 11:27 AM on January 27, 2003

What is wrong with people anyway?

Nothing's wrong with people. This is how people act. They do it in Europe (football), North America (football), South America (football) and Africa (beauty pagents). Those Koreans were exceptions to the rule. Weirdos.
posted by dazed_one at 11:28 AM on January 27, 2003

I'm reasonably sure Koreans riot to Dance Dance Revolution battles.
posted by Stan Chin at 11:29 AM on January 27, 2003

It's fun to watch the disintegration of the Rousseau's Social Contract.
posted by four panels at 11:32 AM on January 27, 2003

Stan - thank you for framing the discussion in terms of Warcraft 2, now it is easier to understand.

Raider fans always have guns. I'm pretty sure it's an Oakland city statute

Crash - I would have thought so too, and yet artillery last night seemed to be limited to mostly just bottle throwing, which begs the question why didn't the cops just come in heavy. I'm not in favor of "shoot first, ask questions later", but I honestly think a little show of overwhelming force early might have prevented the poor paint shop owner from losing his business.
posted by jonson at 11:32 AM on January 27, 2003

Those Koreans were exceptions to the rule.

While Koreans might not riot at sporting events their labour unions and students are veterans at it. They have a set riot/protest season each year.
posted by PenDevil at 11:36 AM on January 27, 2003

"I honestly think a little show of overwhelming force early might have prevented the poor paint shop owner from losing his business."

Armored steam rollers is my proposed answer to rioters. How is a bottle throwing hooligan meant to respond to that? It would be the ultimate way of dispersing a crowd.

Remember Austin Powers?
posted by dazed_one at 11:39 AM on January 27, 2003

posted by mr_crash_davis at 11:43 AM on January 27, 2003

stan chin, that analogy wins you my "#1 In The Hood, Yo" award.

I can imagine just walking down the block, when you all of a sudden hear those ogre-mages bloodlusting raiders fans... you don't have a battle plan, and you don't even know where they are... you just know they're going to charge in and tear your shit up any second now...
posted by lotsofno at 11:45 AM on January 27, 2003

I don't believe this has anything to do with football. Oakland PD has had a lot trouble this past year containing youthful aggression and disdain for authority. Murder is up, street racing (called "side shows" in Oaktown) is way up. These are kids looking to burn some sh*t down. Don't blame the raiders, blame the parents, blame the inequality of the economic structure, blame the media (whose helicopters circled overhead, televising the event live and showing other like-minded assh*les where to go if they were interested in cracking some skulls). Shame indeed, but by and large, it's a small story and one that certainly isn't new.
posted by pejamo at 11:46 AM on January 27, 2003

I blame sites like this one , where common outbursts of emotion are shunned, leaving true humans no outlet for their increasing buildup of anger and anxiety, forcing them to explode with passionate rage at the first opportunity to finally release their excedingly human fire.
posted by HTuttle at 11:55 AM on January 27, 2003

Hey, let's not forget that whole Lineage thing in Korea. Forget about North Korea and nuclear weapons - surely a server crash-induced mob frenzy is South Korea's greatest threat.

Anyways, the Raider Nation... what a class act. GO NINERS.
posted by swank6 at 12:07 PM on January 27, 2003

Nothing's wrong with people. This is how people act.

Seems like there must be something wrong with people, then, if this is how we act. Am I wrong?

In Tampa Bay, by the way, there were also riots. The difference is that they were very slow and ended when Matlock came on. They were throwing hard candy and beating people with canes. It was horrible, horrible!
posted by Hildago at 12:15 PM on January 27, 2003

Nothing's wrong with people. This is how people act.

That's a bit general, don't you think? I've never rioted after the Lakers have won the NBA Finals. Sure, there are riots, but I don't take part in them. Am I not people?

soylent green.... it's... people!
posted by eyeballkid at 12:50 PM on January 27, 2003

This article just made me plant my fist through my monitor. Betwwen the pain and the sweet residuall gases risimg from the wreckage, pleasde pardon my speelling,,,,.
posted by LinusMines at 1:02 PM on January 27, 2003

Man, I don't ever remember the 49ners fans doing crap like this when we've won the superbowl. Lets see, we did it 5 times. No losses when we went.

Just goes to show that the Raider Nation is a breed apart....
posted by ericdano at 1:12 PM on January 27, 2003

"What is wrong with people anyway?"
Um, could it be that a good many people are ignorant, worthless assholes, with no redeeming value?

BTW, I live in Berkeley, a few miles from the hot-spots, but about 1:30 am, a crowd of knuckle-draggers gathered at the intersection a block away And did the "let's do doughnuts in the intersection" routine.

The real tragedy here is that that none of those fucks is on a slab this morning, and will probably be pumping out unwanted children in the near future.

And you thought Berkeley residents were unarmed pacifists...
posted by 2sheets at 1:30 PM on January 27, 2003

> including a McDonald's restaurant that was ransacked and
> partially burned.

Hey, they're just high-spirited lads. They can move to my town anytime.
posted by jfuller at 1:33 PM on January 27, 2003

street racing (called "side shows" in Oaktown)

I think the "sideshow" term is an L.A.-ism; regardless, it isn't "street racing." While sideshows are often found at street races, they aren't the races themselves. Sideshow activities in Oakland are mainly intersection donuts, burnout competitions, and the occasional game of chicken, and most of these things are taking place in a much less organized fashion than the "sideshow" term implies.

I know this from experience: it happens on the street in front of my house, about three blocks from where much of the post-game riot activity took place.

The general atmosphere and behavior in the neighborhood suggests that this kind of thing won't be uncommon in the future. On a somewhat more muted scale -- sans burning, looting, and mobbing random cars in traffic since folks seem to save that for special occasions -- this stuff is already happening regularly. Most of the mooks who went out rampaging in the streets didn't just suddenly flip out one night. It's already simmering and occasionally boils over a bit.

I hope everyone enjoyed the arial coverage of the riot . All those choppers hammering away all night while hovering at low altitude kept us honest citizens up late.
posted by majick at 1:51 PM on January 27, 2003

fucking savages. Is it any wonder people are scared to live in Oakland? There are entire sections of the city where any sane person is (rightly) afraid to go.

A friend of mine lives in one of the better Oakland neighborhoods, and just last week someone was shot about a 1/4 mile down the street - 3 blocks away - and these are the short, suburb, blocks, not 3 city blocks. It was a mugging/robbery gone bad. ABout two weeks previous someone got mugged on the way to their car on the same street. And just recently drug dealers have started standing on the corners near her house just hanging out and flashing drug signs at passers by.

Seriously - this was a good middle class neighborhood with kids and old people all over the place. It only takes a couple of fuckups/savages to ruin an entire neighborhood.

I blame hip-hop/urban culture and gangsta-rap, both of which glorfy the thugz life, which these people take to heart. To bad they don't pay attention to COPS, which is a somewhat realer depiction of what a thugz life usually amounts to.

On a tangentially related note: what possible reason could a girl who works at McDonalds have for having gold plated teeth?
posted by jaded at 1:53 PM on January 27, 2003

Oh - and I'm guessing that the only reason there are no sideshows in my friends neighborhood is that the streets are simply too narrow for a good donut.
posted by jaded at 1:54 PM on January 27, 2003

jeez 2sheets, kinda extreme. i'm less concerned about people committing vandalism than i am about others who wish those people knuckle-draggers dead.
posted by poopy at 1:55 PM on January 27, 2003

It occurs to me that there are a lot of things going on these days that might warrant rioting in the streets, flipping over cars, and beating up cops.

A bunch of millionaires from out of town winning a ball game against another bunch of millionaires from out of town just doesn't seem like one of 'em.
posted by majcher at 2:09 PM on January 27, 2003

Oh - and I'm guessing that the only reason there are no sideshows in my friends neighborhood is that the streets are simply too narrow for a good donut.
Sounds like more of an incentive to try it is my massive 4 cylinder 16 y/o truck.
posted by jmd82 at 2:25 PM on January 27, 2003

Take 250 police dogs and 1000 policemen and national guardsmen. Line them up on one side of the street.

Announce by helicopter that the rioters have 90 seconds to drop their weapons and disperse.

Then start marching down the road. Anyone who is not moving AWAY or has a gun/rock/stick/bottle in their hand, release the dogs.

Anyone who approaches the cops it's open season. Beat them down like animals.

One good show like this, with a few dead bodies as trophies, and you'd probably see the end of this whole attitude. They riot because they know nothing is going to happen. The worst that will happen is some tear gas and some rubber bullets. You might get a trip in the paddywagon. Big deal. You think some tear gas is fitting punishment for burning someone's car/home/business to the ground?

It is easy to hate these people because they KNOW they are doing wrong. I don't care what kind of broken home, poverty, racial inequity, or political persuasion you are from, you know it is WRONG to set fire to things that are not yours.

I also like the steamroller thing posted above. Kinda hard to argue or intimidate several tons of cold steel. You have no choice but to leave or perish.

I think of the LA Riots after OJ. Those men that drug that truck driver out of his truck and beat him with bricks, there should have been a national guardsmen who put a bullet through each of their heads. You would see a crowd disperse real quick once the M-60's start rat-tat-tatting.

The kinds of dregs of humanity that would resort to violence and destruction just because a FOOTBALL TEAM (who was probably on the take anyway) lost a game, I have no use for them and truly wish they were all dead. And I'm not kidding. They are absolutely worthless in every meaning of the term.

And all of you spare me about "peaceful demonstrations" and "political protest". All of you are intelligent enough to know the difference so just save it.

I feel the same way about the "militias". The next time a group of Freemen succeed from the Union, calmly announce they have 5 minutes to give up or else there will be a stealth bomber overhead that will LEVEL THEIR COMPOUND. It is then their choice to stay and die or leave and face the legal consequences.

If someone had the balls to actually stand up to these people it would be MUCH less likely to be a problem in the future.
posted by Ynoxas at 2:37 PM on January 27, 2003

In some countries, people riot for food or for freedom. In others, they riot over whether their favorite sports team won or lost.

Next time this happens, a few strafing runs from an AC-130U ought to get everybody to settle down. "Strafe" even comes from the German verb for "to punish."
posted by alumshubby at 2:41 PM on January 27, 2003

these guys would have no chance against soccer hooligans, end of story.
Lets solve the iraq thing and send the raiders fans and the millwall fans in right now !
Saddam would be on his knees in about 5 minutes.
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:41 PM on January 27, 2003

poopy - extreme?
There were 12 cars burning in the streets last night.
Do you think that's extreme?
Do you think this was just some American Graffiti style kids and their hot-rods kind of thing? Firemen had to withdraw from fighting fires last night because they were attacked.
When a situation devolves into burning and looting, I think deadly force is appropriate.
And I'll take my chances with a jury should the situation arise, because the cops aren't going to protect me or my home.

You're welcome to come out and offer a hug and some understanding if you think that might take care of things.

Just out of curiosity, do live in an urban area where this kind of thing happens?
posted by 2sheets at 2:47 PM on January 27, 2003

jaded: Blame whatever "cultural" elements you like and then go think about what is shared between historical and current groups of people who commit a lot of violent crimes and riot in the streets -- soccer hooligans in the UK, black kids in Oakland, white immigrants in big cities 60 years ago, some groups of middle eastern immigrants in Europe right now. Wanna blame the crime rate in industrial areas of the UK on hip-hop? It's money. The poor classes are the criminal classes. Of course the behavior is ridiculous and dangerous and stupid and inexcusable, but this "these people and their violent music" crap is contextually blind.
posted by blissbat at 2:47 PM on January 27, 2003

I have no use for them and truly wish they were all dead. And I'm not kidding.
Or maybe instead of being Judge Ynoxas, YOU should go get some balls and do something about it...Oh, wait, thats right...its a helluva lot easier to bitch and moan from up here than it is to do something down there.
posted by jmd82 at 3:00 PM on January 27, 2003

actually 2sheets, i used to live in oakland. you're right, violence there is extremely bad and i wouldn't want to ever go back there. i also agree that force should most definitely be used by the cops in a dangerous situation like that...which is what the police did... in a controlled disciplined manner: it could've been a lot worse but the police were prepared and didn't overreact by resorting to deadly force.

however, phrases like 'savages' and 'beat them down like animals' are just as disturbing (if not moreso) as what happened in oakland.
posted by poopy at 3:00 PM on January 27, 2003

You think some tear gas is fitting punishment for burning someone's car/home/business to the ground?

When a situation devolves into burning and looting, I think deadly force is appropriate.

ugh. Sorry, I've lived in bad parts of both Oakland and San Francisco for the last 6 years and I don't believe that we should start randomly shooting people to discourage looters or sideshows or arsonists; this is not a sensible solution at all, and i'm surprised to see it even in jest (ok, i understand the sentiment, i myself have wished to do serious physical harm to some of these folks when they wake me up at 3 am, but c'mon -- the solution is not to kill people -- that's utterly ridiculous, and would cause MORE riots, not less).

Anyhow, the solution to these sorts of problems is to address the reason *why* these kids are burning shit down. Reason No 1, if you ask me, that's likely responsible for most of the other causes (under-education, drug-dealing, etc etc), is economic inequities. It's too bad these kids probably don't understand that, because then maybe they'd burn down some shit that actually belongs to "The Man", instead of things in their neighborhood that are owned by people that, likely, are struggling as much as they are.

lastly, I don't think the people rioting last night are necessarily representative of Raider fans, but they do represent some of the problems and culture of that particular part of international boulevard (which, ok, is not really a pleasant place.)
posted by fishfucker at 3:19 PM on January 27, 2003

And all of you spare me about "peaceful demonstrations" and "political protest". All of you are intelligent enough to know the difference so just save it.
You and I might be able to determine the difference between some football hooligans and a peace demonstration, but I assure you that the police, as an institution, don't make these kinds of distinctions. The police won't care whether the crowd they're beating down is carrying "No War" or "Go Raiders" signs. In the fog of battle, a crowd is a crowd is a crowd. Give the police the power of random lethal force and they will use it indiscriminately. That's their job.

I've been in the middle of demonstrations that were confronted by riot police, so I can tell you a few things about what happens. First of all, police commands are not always heard and are not always reasonable. If the police order the front line of a protest to disperse, the people at the front can't move unless the people at the back know that they have to move also. The vast, vast, vast majority of people at any gathering are innocent bystanders. A lot of the time you have rubber neckers who have no idea about the severity of a situation. Opening fire on a group of innocents (no matter how dumb they may be) to quell a handful of troublemakers is absurd and amoral in every sense of the term.

Police confrontation tends to make these situations worse. Of course, that's what you're advocating, right? Kill all the morons and make an example out of them? Well, you sir, are also a moron.

If I'm reading this story correctly, nobody got seriously injured and nobody got killed. Does your morality really support the idea of murdering people for petty vandalism? You scare me.

Note: If you think the Rodney King riots were bad, wait until you see the fallout from your little idea, Ynoxas. Violence breeds violence. END OF FUCKING STORY. Respond with rational force if you must, but there's a huge difference between self-defense and mowing down people because you don't understand their motivation.

Okay, that being said, I'm not sure that this isn't a cultural phenomenon. Psychologically, people with no internal structure for self-esteem might rely on BIRGing (Basking in Reflected Glory) to create the necessary feelings of self-worth. I suspect that people who're employed in a job they enjoy and that lets them see how their employment aids others don't get quite so immersed in the land of bread and circuses that another commenter mentioned. Give people a real stake in their community, instead of an empty, imaginary stake like sports, and I suspect that they'll tend to want to protect it instead of tearing it to pieces.

As senseless as these riots are, they're a sign of real problems in our society. The rich grow richer and the poor grow more desperate. One account says Nero started the fire to make room to build his largest palace. Well, either way, Rome is burning and I, for one, refuse to fiddle.
posted by Skwirl at 4:15 PM on January 27, 2003

I live in Oakland (in the "nice" part.) I am nothing but fucking pissed at those useless fools from last night. The vast majority of Raiders fans went home silently last night like normal people. But that's not what you read about all over the USA. You read about the useless, violent, young kids who do this kind of crap all the time. They have no respect for anything. Even their own neighborhoods.
Where is their community outrage that these POS kids trash their neighborhoods every chance they get?

Someone up top said we ought to do something about it, sure, just tell me what I can do! Instead I just pay out my fucking nose in taxes to pay for cops to save the idiots from themselves. No one wants to say it because it's "racist," but there is something really really fucked up and wrong about the black underclass in the inner cities. Where are their parents? Where is their community? Where is any sense whatsoever of right and wrong? Why don't their communities say something against this?

I feel the same way about the rising murder rate in Oakland. Out of the 100 odd murders last year, almost all were drug dealers, parollees, gang members, and other bloodsucking worthless people. I find it really hard to get worked up when useless violent people are killing each other. Let 'em do it-we are better off without them. I'm sick of paying for the cops to save these people from themselves when their neighborhoods won't even step forward to say who is doing the killing/rioting/looting. Fuck 'em.
posted by aacheson at 4:22 PM on January 27, 2003

the solution to these sorts of problems is to address the reason *why* these kids are burning shit down.

This is a cop-out we hear all the time lately - blame the parents, blame the schools, blame the lack of social services, blah blah blah. Forget this particular riot - these are people who are destroying property and putting innocent lives at risk because they can and they will keep doing it until they are shown that it will not be tolerated and will be met with equal force. If this was 12-year-olds, the "blame someone else" routine would carry more weight, but there comes a time in everyone's life when they have to stop blaming the world for their troubles and take responsibility for their actions. There is no excuse whatever for that behaviour and those participating in it should be made to pay one way or another. Reason and ever-increasing social services have failed to stop this type of behaviour, so maybe it is now time to try tougher tactics. I am not suggesting shooting rioters, but those who carry out these acts need to be taught what it means to face the results of their decision to destroy peoples property. if that means they spend a good portion of their life repaying the cost of the damage, so be it. If that means they lose some of their "rights" as a result of forcibly taking away the right of law-abiding citizens to live their life free of fear and violence, so be it. Adulthood = responsibility and it is about time communities started making people aware of this fact.
posted by dg at 4:22 PM on January 27, 2003

If those of you who disagree with me would have bothered to read what I actually wrote, instead of just reading into it whatever particular baggage you have, then you would see I was *NOT* calling for the "random killing" of people.

I didn't say "kill them all" I said ORDER the crowd to disperse, and start marching towards them. Those that back up and go home are free to do so. Those that stick around to throw bottles and hit the police with sticks and rocks *ARE CHOOSING TO BECOME COMBATANTS*. At that point, I say let the battle royale begin.

Do something about it? What exactly am I supposed to do about the Oakland riots from 3000 miles away? I had the good fortune to have ROTC marksmanship training in college. Put me down there, I will be happy to "do the dirty work".

See, police don't ORDER rioters to disperse anymore, they REQUEST that they do. They do the equivalent of asking nicely. "Oh, PLEASE stop burning down everything and stealing everything! Don't make me throw tear gas at you! I might have to stand here with my riot shield and look angrily at you! Noone wants that!"

There is *NO CONSEQUENCE* to being part of an angry mob! The rioters know from past experiences in modern day America that the police WILL NOT use deadly force, you WILL NOT be charged with any serious crime, and likely no crime at all, and you WILL NOT be any worse off than you were before the riot, with the possible exception of some minor eye irritation.

What they should do is turn the damn hoses on them. But, guess what? Can't do that because then people would start screaming that it was 1950's Alabama.

I don't understand why people refuse to label these rioters for what they are: CRIMINALS. Violent, depraved, heartless, mindless CRIMINALS.

I hate them all.

Order them to disperse. If they don't, use WHATEVER MEASURES ARE NECESSARY to force them to.

It is their choice. As was posted above, it is time people such as this, young, old, black, white, rich, poor... are taught that there ARE consequences for your actions, you ARE accountable, and you WILL be made to follow the laws of the land.

If you are so dimwitted that you think that handling a burning, looting riot is the same as handling a sit in at a college student union building, then that's not my fault.

Police confrontation tends to make these situations worse

Oh, so you should just let the riot run its course? Don't stand in their way, in fact, why not just provide the rocks and sticks? Maybe we could give them little wheelbarrows to haul away their loot as well.

If you don't think an armed force that had the power to forcible make people comply with the law would end a riot then you are the moron.

Those idiots in Oakland rioted because they *KNEW* they were in no danger. Do you really think these chicken-shit dregs of humanity would have stood and fought a battle toe to toe? No, if they knew the police had free reign to beat their asses they would have all scampered away like the skulking scavengers they are.

These people are not honorable. They had no point to prove or political motivation. They were humans behaving like animals. Hence why I say treat them as such.
posted by Ynoxas at 5:34 PM on January 27, 2003

Well said, Ynoxas.
posted by dazed_one at 5:46 PM on January 27, 2003

"Those idiots in Oakland rioted because they *KNEW* they were in no danger."
And the irony is that they knew they weren't in danger because 40 years ago people took to the streets in this country for a just cause and were attacked and in some cases murdered by police. This resulted in changes in policy and training that now put ordinary citizens in danger in order to protect the rights of looters.
Last night was one big collective piss on the grave of MLK.

What I would like to see more than people getting shot would be an ultra-sound weapon that would make every one in the crowd lose bowel control. I think the party would break up pretty quickly after some OG wannabe's pants filled with shit.
posted by 2sheets at 6:06 PM on January 27, 2003

Very well said, Ynoxas. I have to wonder, also, how many of the rioters just joined in once the rioting started, that were not even at the game or fans in particular (except of burning and destroying other people's property for the hell of it).
posted by dg at 6:42 PM on January 27, 2003

I'm going to have to agree with Ynoxas here.

There *is* a huge difference between an anti-war protest, even one that turn violent, and the riots that happened last night. It's been my observation that when an anti-war protest gets violent it's because of either A. a dumbass on the protest side throws a bottle or B. skittish cops who mistakenly open fire.

But I don't think I've ever heard of an anti-war protest that involved the burning of cars and businesses and general destruction all around. I'm sure I'm wrong, but I've not heard of it. The protests up seatle got pretty bad - but it was a group separate from the protesters that caused all the trouble.

If people are throwing rocks and bottles (and whathaveyou) to the extent that the police actually have to *withdraw* for their own safety, then I'd say it's time to open fire.

I was generalizing a bit much when I said I blame "rap" culture. But lower class culture in the county, particularly, urban lower class culture (you don't see this happening in backwoods Tenesee...), is the problem here. Rap and it's glorification of violence and irresponsibility is partly to blame. Television and it's continual message that Money=SelfWorth is partly to blame. A completely *fucked* school system that basically ignores "inner city" youth is partly to blame. The fact that we live in a society where both parents *need* to work to make ends meet, instead of teaching their kids the difference between right and wrong is partly to blame.

And while the failings of society on the whole may give people plenty of reasons to riot - plenty of poor people chose NOT to destroy. The fact of the matter is this: Nobody participated in the destruction last night by accident. They CHOSE to destroy. For that - whatever the "reason" - they are responsible, and should be treated as such,

Furthermore, anyone that goes near my home, my car or my girl with a lit flame is going to get one between the eyes.
posted by jaded at 6:48 PM on January 27, 2003

Damn. See, I had this big long comment, but then Skwirl went and said it far better. Then Ynoxas came back with an even more over-the-top comment than before. So now I must go back to the drawing board.

Ynoxas doesn't seem to have much of a feel for crowd dynamics, so let's spell it out. Rioters don't just riot because they think they won't get shot for doing it. They are human beings, with human motivations. The motivation is often that the cops are, or seem to be, beating a few of their people down, and therefore become the enemy. Then the crowd surges, starts throwing rocks and bottles, and the police respond with tear gas and rubber bullets. (By the way, anyone who likens tear gas and rubber bullets to a slap on the wrist needs to be tear-gassed and shot with rubber bullets more often.) I believe this is what Skwirl means by, "Police confrontation tends to make these situations worse."

This sort of thing has been reported on Metafilter before. Skwirl also says pretty much the same thing from his own experience. How many crowd-police interactions (both good and ill) has Ynoxas had the pleasure of witnessing?

Here is the point where some have advocated beating their fellow Americans to death, or letting them be torn apart by dogs, for throwing bottles, or maybe just being next to someone throwing bottles. Someone actually mentioned that strafe means "punish" in German, and used that as some sort of warped justification for advocating the aerial machine-gunning of rioters. Me, I don't get how the Luftwaffe can teach us helpful lessons about how to run a society or maintain civil order.

I mean, I can see how a fascist would have no problem advocating that troublemakers be killed or terrorized into submission, but you would think a presumably non-fascist American would think twice before calling for the routine killing of other Americans. Especially in this time of quasi-war, it seems terribly irresponsible to devalue the lives of our countrymen to the point where beating them or burning them to death seems okay. Haven't our enemies done enough of that for us already?

Also, can someone please tell me what riots in Los Angeles over the Rodney King verdict have to do with a riot in Oakland over a football game? This seems more like riots at Mardi Gras or at college frat parties than anything else. Well, except for the presumed color of most of the participants, of course. Of course, maybe it's just equal-opportunity fascism afoot here. Hard to say, really.

I'm not saying that the police do nothing. I'm only saying that they should stay police, and not become soldiers. That means using force only when necessary, and lethal force as a last resort, not a first resort. That means understanding how crowds work, not assuming that a drunken crowd with a few belligerents will respond well to ultimatums delivered by megaphone from lines of police in riot gear. That means that people might be committing crimes tonight, but will go back to being law-abiding citizens tomorrow when they sober up, and and so maybe don't deserve to get killed or crippled tonight.
posted by skoosh at 7:18 PM on January 27, 2003

Oh yeah, and: I can't speak for Tennessee, but I grew up in northern New York, an extremely rural area (for the East Coast) that did not lack for drunken, raucous assholes on the weekends. It's all about population density, not the alleged degradation of urban culture.

Really, though, anyone who can read about beer riots on American college campuses and then blame city riots on some peculiarly urban lower-class pathology -- with a straight face -- has some serious cognitive dissonance going on.

If I could only see your face...
posted by skoosh at 7:28 PM on January 27, 2003

That means that people might be committing crimes tonight, but will go back to being law-abiding citizens tomorrow when they sober up, and and so maybe don't deserve to get killed or crippled tonight.

Yeah, at least until the next time their team loses.

More reading on riots. Cato Institute, usual disclaimers apply.
posted by Ynoxas at 7:57 PM on January 27, 2003

i've been reading many of the comments on this thread with interest and i have a suggestion:

as soon as these worthless godforsaken pieces of trash start foaming at the mouths and embarking on their mindless dionysian orgy of destruction which puts respectable citizens in fear of losing everything they have worked so hard for i say we quit namby pambying around with snipers (u live near d.c. ynoxas?) and enlist the help of our god-fearing usaf pilots.
Just two of these fine boys could be enlisted to carry a giant pancake affixed with string to one wingtip each,
which they could then deliver to ground zero via the latest satellite - laser technology.
The rioting , seething mass of subhuman evildoers would then be rendered helpless or dead (the tallest ones ie the troublemakers would absorb most impact)
under the colossal force of this amazing weapon.
Not only would we solve the crowd control issue , the povery issue could also be solved by having these refugees from the caves of hades minor eat said pancake.

if anyone has a more sane and rational solution than that,
i'm all ears.
posted by sgt.serenity at 8:20 PM on January 27, 2003

"If someone had the balls to actually stand up to these people it would be MUCH less likely to be a problem in the future."

This is where good vs evil thinking gets us. Those people are bad. If they refuse to be good we should kill a few of them. That will fix things.

No. It will not fix things. It will cause more riots. A lot more riots. In what city in the US do citizens suddenly become calm and obedient after seeing a few of their neighbors shot in the street by the cops? Maybe I'm an idiot or something, but it seems to me that police violence tends to cause riots.

One of the things I like about this country is that there are more people who think it's wrong to shot people who fail to disperse than who think it's right to shoot people who fail to obey. And thankfully we've risen above the level where we think shooting into crowds is a good solution, or turning dogs loose on crowds is a good solution.

Well...... Some of us have risen above that. I guess others cling to the idea that the problem with the US is that we don't shoot more people in the street.

Ynoxas - I suspect the cops may have rejected your plan because they think it would be really stupid. Or maybe I'm wrong. Maybe the cops are all just pussies who lack balls.
posted by y6y6y6 at 8:36 PM on January 27, 2003

That means that people might be committing crimes tonight, but will go back to being law-abiding citizens tomorrow when they sober up, and and so maybe don't deserve to get killed or crippled tonight.

What they may do tomorrow is irrelevant - what they are doing NOW is what matters - a rapist may go home to his family and act normally, but he is still a criminal.
posted by dg at 8:38 PM on January 27, 2003

Those of you that are blaming rap, etc. need to get real. No rational human being sees glorification of bad behavior as an honest excuse to engage in said behavior, if they know it is wrong.

Also, for all the bad (and well deserved) rap that Eagles fans get - the loser "road warrior" Raiders fans have shown them up. In the worst way.
posted by owillis at 8:51 PM on January 27, 2003

Forget this particular riot - these are people who are destroying property and putting innocent lives at risk because they can and they will keep doing it until they are shown that it will not be tolerated and will be met with equal force.

no argument here. if someone is committing a crime then it should be stopped with EQUAL force, not excessive. these weren't people terrorizing and threatening others in their path: they were young kids (many of them drunk) looking to party and create mischief by looting and burning vehicles for the most part. does this mean that ANY force necessary should be used? well, i guess there are those here who don't have a problem with that. but i can just imagine what the headlines would have read if something that started with drunken kids burning cars and vandalizing turned into shootings and deaths. again, this could have been so much worse, especially if the general consensus among the police force was to take 'WHATEVER MEASURES ARE NECESSARY'.

ynoxas sums up his/her viewpoint: he/she hates them all.
posted by poopy at 8:59 PM on January 27, 2003

Again, I wish those that disagree would read what I actually wrote instead of "reading between the lines" and injecting what you wish I'd said. All this about "shooting into crowds" and "killing innocents" is a bunch of colorful language that is purposefully misleading and not what I said at all.

I still am not sure where I said to just start killing people for no reason. I'm pretty sure everywhere I've offered giving the people an option to retreat, and then restoring order through whatever means is necessary. Hey, if firing 1 tear gas grenade restores order, then so be it.

You order the crowd to disarm and disperse. If someone instead of dispersing or retreating actually advances on the police, weapons in hand, then I consider it open season on them. Nowhere did I say to "shoot into crowds". In fact, I never mentioned shooting them at all. I said to "beat them down like animals". Read, and then comment.

If you have someone threatened with a weapon, and a policeman tells you to drop the weapon, he is entitled to use deadly force to make you do so. He doesn't *HAVE* to, but he is entitled to. He may beat you with his stick, he may spray you with mace, he may shoot you. The thing he *ISN'T* going to do is say "oh, well, I'd hate to escalate the situation and risk angering your neighbors so please go about your illegal activities, I'm too spineless to stop you".

You have a knife, the cop has a gun. It's only you two on the street. The cop can use WHATEVER FORCE NECESSARY to disarm you. Why many of you think the rules should change somehow because there's several people on the street is beyond me.

y6: the pussies would be the lawmakers who have stifled the police and refused to allow them to respond "in kind". I'm not sure what "in kind" to someone setting cars on fire is... do you set their clothes on fire?

The great majority of the time, a wrongful police shooting ends up in a court battle, not a riot, so lets relieve ourselves of that notion first. Also, the ones that do tend to excite riots are ones where an unarmed teenager is shot 37 times as he is walking into his own apartment building. That is something entirely different than the police forcibly stopping roving bands of marauders burning and looting their way through the city, and I'm sorry if you can't see the difference.

Do you honestly think that the city is going to "revolt" because the police used whatever force was necessary to protect the lives and property of the law-abiding citizens?

Do you not think Joe Sixpack would be less likely to go on a mindless spree of destruction and mayhem if he knew there was a significant chance he would get his ass beaten for it?

You really should read that Cato article.

So what's your solution? Seriously. You are the police captain, and there's a riot in your town. Your men are badly outnumbered and you forbid the use of force.

What is your solution to the riot? Do you just keep moving your perimeter backwards to avoid conflict? You allow them to burn and loot all they want as long as it avoids confrontation? How many buildings must they destroy before you feel force is required? 10? 100? 1000? All of them? Would you let them take over the entire town so you could avoid bloodshed of "the innocents" who are actually rampaging maniacs? Do they get to burn down your home too with no retribution? Do you even ATTEMPT to stop them from continuing the violence?

See, in practice, it is a much different animal. You cannot threatened thousands with "arrest". As the Cato article says, there is safety in their numbers. They know you can't get them all.

You won't answer, noone will. What's easy is saying "violence breeds violence". What's not easy is wondering "how do you stop the violence that has already started".

Poopy: Yes, I do hate them all. I can be completely comfortable with the statement that I hate anyone who has taken part in a violent riot over a goddamn football game. Anyone who would set a store on fire because the Raiders got embarrassed in the Super Bowl deserves to be removed from our society.

By any means necessary.
posted by Ynoxas at 10:38 PM on January 27, 2003

Hear, hear Ynoxas - how can people defend violent criminals because the police did something wrong a generation ago? What if it was your business burning, or your car? i can tell you this - if it was my property being destroyed, I would expect those who I pay to protect that property to use enough force to stop the scum responsible.
posted by dg at 11:26 PM on January 27, 2003

gee mom ! i treated them like scum and they acted like it!
posted by sgt.serenity at 11:34 PM on January 27, 2003

I think you've got that one backwards, sarge.
posted by jaded at 1:56 AM on January 28, 2003

"We lost, and that bothers a lot of the young people out here," said Hannibal Willis, a member of the rap group Hazardous Materials. "A lot of them are real Raider friends. I ain't gonna lie -- if we had won, we would have done the same thing, but milder."

Gee. Model citizen.
posted by lampshade at 5:45 AM on January 28, 2003

Predictably, today there are stories in the newspapers about how the police didn't do enough. But City Manager Robert Bobb said it perfectly, "The police are damned if they do and damned if they don't," Bobb said. "If they started making one arrest after another, vast numbers of individuals would have said police were overreacting."

I am still so angry and frustrated. Why aren't the Raiders standing up and saying that "those people aren't real fans and are irresponsible and stupid." That would make much more of an impact of the rioters than Jerry Brown castigating them. There was another story where 2 14 year olds were bragging about being in the riot and said they would go out again if there were another one. Great. 14 years old. Where are their parents? Where is their sense of right and wrong? Why is Oakland full of people like this?
posted by aacheson at 8:53 AM on January 28, 2003

Why is Oakland full of people like this?

cause you want it to be.
posted by sgt.serenity at 9:35 AM on January 28, 2003

Bull crap, sgt. serenity. I live there. There are too many people who don't care about themselves, others, their city, or making any kind of contribution to the city or to the world they live in. For whatever reason. Yes, the vast majority of people in Oakland aren't like those rioters, but we do seem to have a lot of undesirables. You didn't see rioting in Tampa, did you? We are the murder capitol of the US aren't we? And why would I WANT Oakland to be like this? I live there. I love living in Oakland. What reason can you give that I would want that?
posted by aacheson at 1:45 PM on January 28, 2003

Because he is trolling you aacheson - stop responding and he will stop - he lives for attention.
posted by dg at 2:17 PM on January 28, 2003

Mmm, pancakes.

It's funny that Ynoxas, in what I can only guess is an attempt to bolster his/her position, links to an article which seems in many ways to poke holes in his/her proposal.

For one, Haddock and Polsby bring up the case of a typical 4th of July crowd in Chicago, where "people are packed together like sardines, so that individuals substantially lose their ability to decide where to go. One goes where the crowd goes. Going against it is impossible, and even leaving it (unless one is near the edge) may be difficult." This is substantially the same thing that Skwirl mentioned in his explanation of a demonstration, and this is partly why the ultimatums aren't going to work. The guys throwing bottles aren't going to be in the front row, and they aren't necessarily going to step out and present themselves to the police dogs. They will throw their rocks anonymously, from within the crowd, giving the police the option of charging the crowd, firing tear gas, or doing nothing.

Haddock and Polsby also helpfully give us a term for those incidents that spark riots - Schelling incidents. The key here is to realize that, although the Schelling passage implies premeditation on the part of the rioters, it is not necessary for crowds to start out with the intention of rioting, in order to develop into a riot. The Schelling incident, as Skwirl and some of my other references have pointed out, can occur after the crowd has formed, and turn happy people into scared and angry people real quick. Schelling incidents include apparently excessive police actions - e.g. pepperspraying people at random, or beating a guy to death - within sight of a crowd. Witnessing incedibly brutal, one-sided violence would not pacify Ynoxas, it would not pacify me, and it certainly isn't going to pacify a bunch of intoxicated people if they decisively outnumber the cops.

Lastly, Haddock and Polsby explicitly reject what we may call the Sardinian riot control model that Ynoxas seems to advocate - i.e. beating crowds into submission without bothering to arrest them - and in fact, consider it beyond the pale of sensible discourse: "No one would suggest that American police should emulate this style of riot control." Shows what they know.

I'm sorry I'm repeating all my links, but I feel like they weren't read the first time around. At this point, it may be wishful thinking to expect them to be read at all. But a kid can always dream.
posted by skoosh at 5:06 PM on January 28, 2003

I linked it because it was an interesting article from an interesting place (Cato). That's why I said "the usual disclaimers apply".

I think that article bolsters and undermines my position pretty evenly about 50/50.

I, unlike most people, don't post here to "win". Even though many have agreed with me in this post, I would say the exact same thing if noone did. I appreciate the support from those who give it, but I won't whore for some from others who don't.

What I think is funny is they freely admit the forceful quelling of the violence does indeed work, as does a massive showing of force by the National Guard (though the downside is it takes time to assemble).

But, then they say, unsupported, that "noone" advocates it.

Well, that's hardly the case, as I am. :-)

I would have liked the article more if they went into why noone would advocate an obviously effective solution. I understand why, I just want them to bite the bullet and SAY why.

Everyone KNOWS why, but yet everyone is afraid to say it.
posted by Ynoxas at 5:16 PM on January 28, 2003

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