In all likelihood, the protesters who were marching past the palatial estate of Mark and Patricia McCloskey on June 28 had absolutely no clue who lived there — nor were they the least bit interested in finding out — before the pair started waving guns around. Those demonstrators were merely passing by, on the way to the mayor’s house to demand her resignation following an ill-advised incident wherein she read aloud the names and addresses of several advocates of police reform during a Facebook Live briefing. But now, as the gun-toting personal injury attorneys have become living symbols of the Trump administration’s unrelenting demonization of protesters, everyone knows who the McCloskeys are — and boy, let’s just say Trump sure can pick ’em. Stars of the this year’s Republican National Convention, the McCloskeys have been accused in local reporting of: evicting someone during a pandemic; repeatedly claiming squatter’s rights on property they don’t own (and even pulling a gun on their own neighbor during one dispute); suing family members to the point that they have no contact with them; being absolutely hated by their neighbors; and, just for good supervillian measure, destroying the beehives being tended to by students at a neighboring school, thereby making children cry. (Note to McCloskey supporters: That’s called property damage.) They’ve made a big loud stink about how the whole pointing-guns-at-protesters incident has ruined their lives, and now that they’re facing felony charges for it, they might have a point. But it’s not the point they are trying to make — one about threats on their lives, and their dog’s life, and on their property, and all the other justifications for their behavior they cooked up that are not supported by any evidence. The truth is, this was a problem entirely of their own creation — they could have just as easily (in fact, much more easily) stayed inside their home in anonymity and watched the protesters, who had no interest in them whatsoever, pass right on by. Hell, they could have handed out water bottles and been thanked graciously for their support. They chose instead to exercise some of the worst judgment (and most abysmal trigger discipline) this side of a gated community’s fence. What’s that thing people on the right like to say about playing stupid games? — Daniel Hill
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