At the “Occupy Wall Street” protest in New York City over the weekend, a decorated Marine sergeant wearing military colors confronted a group of police officers and gave them a stern lecture at the top of his voice about how they should not be hurting peaceful American protesters.
“Stop hurting these people, man!” shouts Sgt. Shamar Thomas, of the 3rd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, in a video published to YouTube. “Why are ya’ll doing this to our people? I’ve been to Iraq 14 months, but my people, you come over and you hurt them! They don’t have guns!”
He adds: “How do you sleep at night? There is no honor in this!”
As Thomas continues shouting at the police, an officer tells him that he was in Iraq too. “So, why do you allow this?” Shamar replies. “Why are you walking around trying to hurt people?”
“Keep moving,” the unidentified officer answers.
Speaking to amassed members of the press moments later, he goes on: “I am from New York City and these cops are hurting people that I fought to protect. There’s no reason for this. There is no honor in hurting unarmed civilians, and I won’t let it happen. Have a good night.”
“I took an Oath that I live by,” Shamar explains on his YouTube channel. “I am NOT anti-NYPD. I am anti- Police Brutality. I am no longer under contract with the USMC so I do NOT have to follow military uniform regulations. I DON’T affiliate myself with ANY GROUPS or POLITICAL ORG. I affiliate myself with the AMERICAN PEOPLE that’s it. I REFUSE to affiliate with anything that SEPERATES. There is an obvious problem in the country and PEACEFUL PEOPLE should be allowed to PROTEST without Brutality. I was involved in a RIOT in Rutbah, Iraq 2004 and we did NOT treat the Iraqi citizens like they are treating the unarmed civilians in our OWN Country. No one was brutalized because our mission was to ‘WIN the hearts and minds’, why should I expect anything less in my OWN Country. SEMPER FI.”
The video below was published to YouTube on Oct. 16, 2011.
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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