SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — Utah Business Revival is hosting a “Blue Rally” in downtown Salt Lake City Saturday evening to support law enforcement.
The rally began around 5 p.m. at 451 South State Street, and was organized by private citizens and off-duty first responders.
“Blue Rally” extends open invite
Organizer Eric Moutsos, a former motors officer at SLCPD, is inviting police chiefs and sheriffs from around the state to join their group. He said an invite is sent to Salt Lake City Police Chief Mike Brown, but he isn’t expected to attend due to prior obligations.
“Chief Brown, along with the department he leads, faced the daunting task of safeguarding our streets during protests and riots where the participants loudly voiced their disdain for our police,” explains Moutsos. “Remember, 21 of our officers were injured in the events of late May. This cannot stand without us showing our utmost gratitude.”
Participants of the law enforcement rally are being asked to wear blue attire to show their support for officers nationwide.
Meanwhile, a “Defund the police/Blue Rally counter-protest” is taking place at the same time over at Washington Square Park. Organizers say they’re rallying against an unfair system, according to their Facebook event page.
Meanwhile, this is literally a couple hundred feet away on the other side of the building…. Back the Blue counter-protest. pic.twitter.com/3N0WxaraJl
— John Wojcik (@JWojcikKSL) June 20, 2020
“We need Salt Lake City to focus on investing in our community, not in a militarized police force,” it reads. “Social workers, rehab, and housing will all make for a better society. Continued oppression by an unjust system will just further exacerbate our current paradigm. We are also counter-protesting the Blue Rally, as they want to reinforce the racist policing system. Please join us to show that we will not tolerate the proliferation of a system that perpetuates racism.”
Moutsos said the idea of defunding police is a dangerous thought.
“Can you imagine an American society that is forced to gain control of its streets using National Guard units and other members of the armed forces?” he said. “Is that the objective of rioters—to create division to the point where the overwhelming majority of good cops see no solution but to resign, leaving us in a perpetual state of martial law? Do they not understand that the government will quell violent uprisings using the military, which, in the end, will cost more lives—including black lives?”
Moutsos and Utah Business Revival were also behind the controversial Collin Raye country concert in southern Utah.
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