Seattle, Washington became a hotbed of controversy this week after anarcho-secessionists took six blocks of the city for themselves, declaring it no longer a part of the United States.
The “Capital Hill Autonomous Zone” was created by protesters after the police in Seattle’s 13th precinct abandoned their station during demonstrations that arose in the wake of George Floyd’s death. Since then, the area has grown to over six blocks’ in size, and has gained national notoriety after President Trump sparred with local leaders as to how best deal with the situation.
Nearly across the country, all the way to the country music capital of the world, the Governor of Tennessee is now warning Nashville protesters not to get any ideas.
Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee issued a warning to demonstrators looking to set up an autonomous zone in front of the state Capitol Friday, saying that “lawlessness, autonomous zones, and violence will not be tolerated.”
According to a local news outlet, a large group of demonstrators protesting the death of George Floyd in police custody and racial injustice in the U.S., reportedly intended to set up an autonomous zone in front of the Capitol in solidarity with the demonstrations in Seattle.
The Seattle occupation, which has taken over several blocks in the Capitol Hill neighborhood declaring itself an autonomous zone, is reportedly a demonstration of a society without law enforcement – the demonstration comes amid nationwide protests calling to “defund the police.”
Lee was fairly straightforward in his statement.
“We encourage Tennesseans to exercise their First Amendment rights and have seen many examples of peaceful protests across our state in recent weeks,” Lee said in a statement Friday. “As demonstrations continue, we will continue to protect Tennesseans’ right to peaceful assembly, while also reassuring citizens that lawlessness, autonomous zones, and violence will not be tolerated.
“Further, Tennessee law expressly prohibits camping on state property not expressly designated as a campground area, and that law will be enforced,” Lee added.
The Mayor of Seattle, along with Washington State Governor Jay Inslee, have both rebuked President Trump’s suggestion that the federal government could or should step in to take control of the situation.
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