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Bush and Omar Draw Parallel Between Gaza War Protest Police Response and Kent State Massacre on 54th Anniversary

Rep. Ilhan Omar (Credits: Britannica)

On the 54th anniversary of the Kent State Massacre, progressive Representatives Ilhan Omar and Cori Bush drew parallels between the police responses to ongoing pro-Palestinian protests on college campuses and the tragic event that occurred on May 4, 1970.

Omar emphasized that students have the right to express dissent, organize, and protest systemic wrongs, and that silencing them is not an option, no matter how uncomfortable their protests may be to those in power.

Four students were killed and nine were injured at Kent State University in Ohio when the Ohio National Guard opened fire on an anti-Vietnam War protest crowd.

Rep. Cori Bush (Credits: NBC News)

Similarly, recent instances of violence have erupted as police and protesters clashed at Columbia University and the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), with the New York Police Department (NYPD) and Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) cracking down on pro-Palestinian protesters.

Representative Cori Bush echoed Omar’s sentiments, stating that on the 54th anniversary of the Kent State Massacre, students across the country are being brutalized for standing up to endless war.

She emphasized the importance of upholding the rights of free speech and assembly, which are fundamental to the country’s founding principles. Bush expressed solidarity with the students and called for an end to the violence and intimidation tactics used by law enforcement.

The comparisons between the Kent State Massacre and the recent police responses to protests come in the middle of reports of an NYPD officer accidentally firing a round while clearing a Columbia University building taken over by protesters.

Kent State Massacre (Credits:

The officer was searching the first floor, and only law enforcement was nearby during the incident. The NYPD stated that the officer was attempting to access a barricaded area and accidentally discharged his firearm, causing a single round to be discharged, which struck a frame in the wall a few feet away, without causing any injuries.

The incident has raised concerns about the use of force by law enforcement and the need to protect the rights of protesters.

As Representatives Omar and Bush pointed out, the Kent State Massacre serves as a stark reminder of the importance of upholding free speech and assembly rights, and the need to learn from the past to create a more just and peaceful society.

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