‘Back the Blue’ Rally Brings Large Crowd to Clarion

| September 14, 2020

1D4A1627_PPM_1200CLARION, Pa. (EYT) – Approximately 200 law enforcement supporters gathered on Saturday evening in Veterans Memorial Park for a “Back the Blue” rally organized by Team Trump and the Clarion County Republican Committee.

(Photos by Dave Cyphert of ProPoint Media Photography.)

“I think it’s important that we come out and show our support for these men and women who – literally every day – are willing to risk their lives,” said State Representative Donna Oberlander who served as the MC for the event.

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“They don’t know what they are going to encounter when they go out on the job for us.”

The event briefly transitioned to what felt more like a campaign rally when Trump regional field director Louis Focht took the mic.

To the delight of the crowd, Focht started by asking, “Who here backs the blue? Who here wants to see four more years of Donald Trump?”

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“What we have on the line is freedom. What we have on the line is stopping socialism. We have to do what we can to make sure President Trump gets re-elected. We have to make sure the right people are in power,” exclaimed Focht.

“The reason why we are all here today is because we back the blue, we back law enforcement, we back first responders. We have to make sure that the police officers that protect and serve our community know that we have their back and we know that Donald J. Trump has their back.”

Clarion County District Attorney Drew Welsh then spoke, giving praise to local law enforcement and the community.

“The great thing about law enforcement is (they) don’t care if you’re a Democrat, they don’t care about your religion, they don’t care about the color of your skin,” said Welsh. “What they care about is doing their job.”

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“In Clarion County, when you go around and talk to people, they love law enforcement. They support law enforcement. You don’t see the activities in Clarion County that you see around the country. What you see is people who are thankful. I hear from law enforcement all the time about people in this community coming forward and saying thank you for your service.”

Welsh then passed the mic off to Clarion County Sheriff Rex Munsee who closed out the rally with a lengthy speech that focused on 9/11 and how public perception of law enforcement has changed over the years.

“With yesterday being the 19th memorialization of 9/11, I don’t want anyone to think what is happening in the year 2020 is equal to or worse than what happened on that soul-crushing day back in 2001. We as police have known resentment and resistance before. We have come to expect it and overcome it but what happened on that blue, clear sky day on September 11th, was an enemy attack upon innocent civilians in New York City, federal government employees at the Pentagon, and travelers on board an airplane over the fields of Shanksville, Pennsylvania.”

“We may have recovered from the attack of 9/11 but we will never forget those whose lives were lost on that tragic day. And, many of those lives came from brave men and women who were not originally in the Twin Towers. Rather they were the police, the firefighters, and the other first responders.”

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“They were the ones who grabbed their gear and raced into the towering inferno solely to help those who were hurt and trapped inside. They did not do that for glory. They did not do that for pay. They did that because inside of each of them saying ‘we can do this, we can help people escape the danger, it is our duty.'”

“They entered into the flames because they could not disobey their sense of duty to those they serve. Truly, they were heroes.”

“Nineteen years later, the unity and respect for those same selfless heroes in uniform seems sundered and in disarray. We have groups of roving rioters who scream in defiance of any restriction upon them that society may place. They tell us that their feelings and thoughts are more important than laws that were passed. If they make up their minds about the actions of a cop or an investigation because of an edited video on YouTube, they are entitled to run amuck, burning, and pillaging with a maniacal abandon of common sense. The laws that they want the police to obey are the first ones that they disregard, all in the name of protest.”

Munsee’s full speech can be seen below, along with the rest of the rally.

The program concluded with a benediction presented by Bethel Baptist Church Associate Pastor John Creese, Jr.

Following the program, a raffle was held with prizes that included various Trump merchandise ranging from bumper stickers to t-shirts. Those attending were also encouraged to register to vote.

Similar “Back the Blue” rallies are being held throughout the country leading up to the November 3 presidential election.

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