The Rochester chapter of Black Lives Matter has started to make use of their “white shields”, a human wall of white protestors surrounding the black protestors and serving as human shields, ready to take a bullet for the cause.
On Saturday night, rioters marched on the City Hall in Rochester. As the videos show, they organized in such a fashion that the people with the lightest skin were on the front lines, covering the other rioters on all sides.
It is supposed that the idea behind this is either that the police will be less willing to attack white protestors during a riot, or that white people are more deserving of the full effects of the tear gas and impact weapons used by police once a riot has been declared.
One possibility is that they were inspired by a similar event in Portland several weeks ago, where pregnant mothers-to-be formed a human shield line during nightly protests in that city, dubbing themselves the "Yellow Bloc." Portland is currently experiencing its 101th day of straight rioting.
“If you white and you got a shield, you need to be making the perimeter. From whatever this street is to whatever that street is. If you are black, stay in the middle!” A voice off camera is heard to say.
At another point, a woman calls out “white shields” and white people gather around her to protect her.
The last round of rioting, which occurred on Saturday night, saw protestors in Rochester throw objects including, among other things, rocks and bottles at police. They were also known to enter private property and bang on windows in residential neighborhoods. In addition, they entered several restaurants, terrorized staff and patrons, and overturned tables and smashed plates and cups.
The Democrat-run city of Rochester has seen its share of violent and bizarre riot-related actions in the course of 2020. In one inexplicable incident, a statue of black abolitionist and national hero Frederick Douglass was toppled.