Should Atlanta be prepared for protests during election week?

Individuals take to the streets to protest their opinions. Photo Submitted by @odd_shutter

It’s Election Day in the U.S., which always brings a lot of discussion to the tables about where we are and where we are going as a nation. But this year, the conversation is different than normal. 

Say what you will about the current administration, but it has successfully mobilized people, for good or worse. But what if it’s for the worse?.

This election is one of the most emotional in the history of this nation. Mill of people are on edge, waiting to see what will come of the election. Will the Democrats win, or will the Republicans force another upset?

Either way, many are worried about the aftermath. Remember back in 2016 and 2017 when there were thousands of protests after Trump won the election? That was one of the few times we saw interstates completely shut down by protesters, a tactic repeated during the summer 2020 protests.

And yet we might just be on track for another winter of protests and fires. There are already hundreds of demonstrations and events planned across the nation regarding the results of the election. Atlanta is likely going to feel the brunt of the violence. The city, including buildings on the Downtown campus, has already seen violence and damage during the summer. 

Both APD and GSUPD have not issued any official statement regarding plans for potential demonstrations following the election.

Trump has continually said that he will not accept the election results if it is not to his liking. If he doesn’t win, he will call it fraud. Police chiefs around the country are preparing for a very violent November, no matter who the victor is. While we all hope that it doesn’t come to that, cities must prepare.

But it’s more than preparing for the protests, most of which have been peaceful. Cities need to be ready for agitators who could quickly turn a peaceful protest into a riot. There is also the possibility of counter-protests clashing, posing another dangerous situation.

 Whether it’s making sure that there is a full staff on duty or even calling help from other departments, law enforcement must prepare the city. No matter which way this election goes, people are going to get upset. And can you blame them? We are talking about our future, our lives, not just petty disagreements. This nation has to get better at having political discourse and discussion. Having a conversation with each other so that we can heal is essential.

The conversation starts with your vote, no matter for whom you vote. Please go out and vote, make your voice heard. For the next four years, whoever wins the election will have the job of healing this broken nation. You don’t want to regret not voting for your candidate. So, if you haven’t voted already, get out there and make your voice heard!