Joshua Sturman came to downtown Pittsburgh to speak at a rally in support of Hillary Clinton. During that event, a group of Trump supporters gathered across the street in what police described as a peaceful gathering.
Sturman walked across the street and right in the middle of the shoulder-to-shoulder group of Trump supporters and pulled out an American flag. He then began to light it on fire.
The Trump supporters attempted to put out the fire, believing that the Hillary supporter may have doused the flag in an accelerant. But that enraged Sturman, such that he attacked one of the Trump supporters, knocking him to the ground and trying to jump on top of him.
The other Trump supporters alerted law enforcement who arrested Sturman, charging him with “disorderly conduct, simple assault, recklessly endangering another person, and causing or risking catastrophe.”
We all know what would have happened and how the media would have reacted if this had been a Trump supporter who attacked someone who supporter Hillary Clinton. The incident would have been used to prove once again that Trump supporters are violent people, and that the candidate himself is responsible for “inciting violence” in his supporters.
But since it was a Hillary supporter, the incident will forever remain a local story. In fact, if anything, it will be used to show how those Trump supporters invited harm on themselves when they tried to put out the fire. Flag-burning is a constitutionally-protected right under the First Amendment, and those Trump supporters had no rights whatsoever to actively prevent Sturman from exercising his free speech. Sturman only acted in self-defense of his rights. (I’m joking.)
Last week, we reported about a 60-year-old military vet named Paul Jones, Jr. He was at his neighborhood bar called Winston’s Place with a friend talking politics. Jones – a black man – supports Trump.
His political conversation with his friend was overheard by a stranger in the bar who became angry. “He butted in the conversation,” Jones told WEWS over the phone from his hospital bed. “The conversation wasn’t directed at him or to him.”
The stranger became so irate that he went to his car to retrieve a firearm, brought it inside – the bar is a “gun-free zone” – and shot Mr. Jones in the thigh.
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