From a reader:

Everyday People Acted Heroically to Stop a Lynching in Progress



On July 4, a handful of white supremacists—their ugly faces and depraved actions captured clearly on multiple videos online, assaulted and attempted to lynch Vaughxx Booker. These modern-day Klansman, with Confederate flags and chanting “white power,” beat Booker, pinned him to a tree while saying “get a noose.” But they were stopped in their murderous tracks and Booker lived to tell his trauma.

Booker is a Black member of the Monroe Human Rights Commission in Bloomington, Indiana. No human being should experience the horrible physical and mental injuries he suffered in that attack. On Monday, July 6, a sizeable crowd took to the streets of Bloomington in support of Booker and to demand the lynch mob who assaulted him be arrested and charged, which the pigs at the scene of the crime had refused to do. Two of the protesters were sent to the hospital when a car plowed into the demonstration at high speed.1 On July 17, two of the white men who took part in the attack on Booker were charged with battery and other crimes.

But a most significant part of this story that must NOT be lost is that the lynching was stopped by another handful of white people who took risks in confronting the pack of racists and rescued Booker. In doing so, they have objectively set an example for all those who hate this shit to follow: Don’t be a passive observer/bystander to racist, misogynist, anti-LGBTQ, or xenophobic attacks that are raging across Amerikkka. The selfless and fearless action of Booker’s rescuers needs to become more of a feature of the political landscape in the midst of the beautiful 2020 uprising.

Remember that in May 2017, in Portland, Oregon, three men repelled a knife attack on two Black teenage women (one clearly a Muslim) by a white supremacist at the risk of their own safety. In that instance, two of these heroes lost their lives—53-year-old Ricky John Best and 23-year-old Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche, while Micah David-Cole Fletcher, 21, was severely injured but survived.2

The above truly heroic resisters should get a heartfelt salute from everyone who wants to see an end to injustices and who cares about a better future of humanity. Their courageous examples should be emulated and followed by many more people from all walks of life, no matter what your specific “race” or gender, old or young. The many white youth pouring into the 2020 Black Lives Matter rebellion is a welcomed part of its beauty. Even as the massive protests continue and escalate in breadth, depth, and determination, more people should stand up to defend not just you and yours, but others who are under verbal or physical assaults as in Bloomington and Portland. As Vaughxx Booker said at the June 6 rally in Bloomington, “We need to stop being bystanders, I’m here today because folks stopped being bystanders.” Along these lines, consider what could have happened if those who were bystanders at George Floyd’s murder intervened and refused to let it go down but acted to stop it, saying “not today.” As someone said after seeing the video of LAPD savagely beating Rodney King, “Next time you see this, put down the camera and help me.” In other words: don’t just document an injustice or atrocity, try to stop it.


1. “Car drives into protesters at rally for the Black victim of an ‘attempted lynching’ in Indiana,” NBC News, July 7, 2020.  [back]

2. “Erupting from the Fascist Swamp—Murderous Violence on an Oregon Commuter Train,”, May 29, 2017.  [back]

“They're selling postcards of the hanging.” – clip from Revolution: Why It's Necessary, Why It's Possible, What It's All About, a film of a talk by Bob Avakian given in 2003



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