The first sentence of a wrap-up news story in the Nov. 30 Atlanta Constitution read: “A string of protests that began peacefully in Atlanta on Tuesday turned tense by nightfall.” No. That sentence should have ended by saying the protests about the Ferguson grand jury decision “turned VIOLENT by nightfall.”

Law-breakers smashed windows on Peachtree Street as well as damaged a police car and taxi cab. Television viewers could see that when the cab was vandalized and windows of businesses were smashed no police were in sight. Peaceful demonstrators walking with the lawbreakers did nothing to stop them, and didn’t appear to even criticize them.

A mob was allowed by Atlanta Police Department and the Georgia State Patrol to block the Interstate downtown connector and stop traffic on Tuesday night, November 25. That was the second time in several weeks such a blockage occurred (by the exit to Grady hospital) with no immediate police crackdown. Mayor Kasim Reed, at a Nov. 26 news conference, said police displayed “a firm but soft hand.” A defensive mayor also claimed, when asked about the Interstate, that it was difficult to move officers from one place to another and that the police are not “psychic” as to where demonstrations would occur. 

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