On Wednesday Black Lives Matter protesters stormed the Oklahoma Capitol Building in order to protest the passage of a pair of new bills designed to protect motorists fleeing riot situations.
They disrupted proceedings in the House of Representatives, as captured by local reporter Tyler Talley.
Talley confirmed these were in fact BLM protesters as they shouted “black lives matter,” “trans lives matter,” and “no justice, no peace.” A security sweep had to be done after authorities managed to clear the protesters from the building.
Tensions were heated even as the crowd departed.
A protester named Jess Eddy reportedly got face to face with Oklahoma Rep Steve Bashore. This comes per tweets made by the activists themselves.
As for what the demonstrations were objecting to? It’s a story first highlighted by Fox News: with the summer of George Floyd riots last year a commonplace tactic in many locations across the country was to stop the flow of traffic. With a sizeable enough crowd in some cases the rioters overtook oncoming vehicles who happened to pass by, mystified and unsure of how to react.
HB 1674 seeks to rectify that by making it a misdemeanor crime for “unlawfully obstructing traffic while participating in a riot.” If a motorist unintentionally finds themselves in their car and in this kind of a situation, they’re criminally and civilly protected from liabilities for injury/death in getting out of the area.
As for HB 1643, it sought to make it punishable with a $1000 or six months in jail if someone “with the intent to threaten, intimidate or harass, or facilitate another to threaten, intimidate or harass, uses an electronic communication device to knowingly publish, post or otherwise make publicly available personally identifiable information of a peace officer or public official, and as a result places that peace officer or public official in reasonable fear of death or serious bodily injury.”
Despite BLM's efforts, Republican Governor Kevin Stitt approved both bills yesterday.