Diane Binns, former head of the local NAACP in St. Paul, Minnesota, is a woman with guts.
The Target outlet in St. Paul had been damaged by rioters in the wake of the death of George Floyd, an African-American man whose last moments in police custody were captured in heart wrenching video.
When Ms. Binns, 70, went to the Target to pick up medicine for her daughter, the rioters had returned for a second go at the store.
Here is what Ms. Binns said (as recounted in PJ Media, which has a powerful embed of the moment):
Looking at the lines of protesters taunting the cops the day after the riots, she told [reporter Ricardo] Lopez, “These people don’t give a damn about George Floyd. They want to attack. They need to leave this sh*t alone. These mother f**kers need to go home.”
Binns had planned to protest the horrific death of George Floyd. The rally planning apparently degenerated into riot planning, however. Ms. Binns described what happened:
I went to the rally in Minneapolis on the first day after Mr. Floyd was killed, and I thought that it was going to be a rally. But after I got there, and it was about 30 minutes, I realized that this wasn’t a rally, it was going to be a riot. So I left. I haven’t been back to that no more.
I listened to what was being said, I listened to the young people who weren’t following the elders who had organized this rally. And when they started talking about going to the third precinct, I knew how it was going to end, so I left the rally. It took me two hours to get back to St. Paul, and I haven’t been out here since.
You can’t see the pictures of George Floyd under the knee of a policeman and not be saddened and outraged. Floyd’s death cries out for justice. But the destruction we see visited upon cities and innocent people when mobs erupt, harms ordinary people, who depend on Targets and who deserve to be safe.
While commentators from the safety of their studios are praising and justifying the violence and destruction, Diana Binns, who found herself in the thick of the action, had the decency and courage to call it out. She is my new hero.