Wednesday, October 25, 2017
Michigan Trump Republicans Event In GR Shut Down After Antifa Threats: Here's What Really Happened
By Brandon Hall
(Email Him At WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com)
The Michigan Trump Republicans event in Grand Rapids Tuesday was shut down after threats from members of the radical, far left organization Antifa. Many rumors, as well as a lot of incorrect information, has been promulgated ever since...
Here's what you need to know:
The event was originally scheduled to take place outside in Rosa Parks Circle, but when it was clear that it would be raining, organizers sought an indoor venue.
Diane Schindlbeck is the leader of West Michigan Republicans and is a co-founder of Michigan Trump Republicans. Schindlbeck called Flanagan's on Monday and told one of the owners about the situation. The owner was willing to host the group, and told them to stop in for lunch the next day so they could pick out food for the event.
Michigan Trump Republicans leadership arrived a little after 2, tried some food, and everything was going to plan.
In the meantime, however, members of Antifa learned of the new location and started making a series of threats against the business and promised a major counter protest of the event.
I arrived around 3:30 to help setup, and that is around the time when the script flipped: the other owner had learned of the threats and was worried about what it could mean for their business, which they have owned since November of 2016.
The owners then asked MTR to remove any promotional posts on Facebook advertising Flanagan's as the location. They also decided they didn't want any political signs or literature displayed as well. They also decided that the group could no longer use a mic/stereo system for the event's speakers, and that attendees would be limited to a specific small area of the bar which would have a difficult time holding the group.
Sprinkled throughout these demands were hints-subtle and blatant-that the owners believed everyone would be better off rescheduling the event at another location.
The business owners, fueled by fear of Antifa threats and the "tolerant left," simply didn't want to get involved. It's their first year, they are building a reputation and trying to get by, the last thing they need is a boycott or vandalism and drama...
This is where MTR had a difficult choice: put on a half ass event that would have to turn people away, or respect the wishes of the business, and live to fight another day.
Choosing to reschedule the event was a tough decision, but it was the right one.
MTR Co-founder Meshawn Maddock says this incident won't deter the group.
"The foundation of our freedom is based on the first amendment and the open exchange of ideas. What really makes America great is that we have open debate, free thought. These totalitarian leftists are worse than the tyrant kings our forefathers faced," Maddock said. "Antifa protesters are attacking small business owners who also have a right to run their business. These threats of physical violence cannot be ignored.We won't back down, we will continue to meet with Trump supporters all across Michigan. We will be back to Kent County very soon."
Though temporarily emboldened, Antifa only won the battle, they lost the war, MTR is returning to Grand Rapids in mid November, and it's gonna be YUGE... Stay tuned!
Brandon Hall is a lifelong political nerd from Grand Haven, and is the Managing Editor of West Michigan Politics.
>>>Email him at WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com
Posted by NerdWatch at 5:32 PM