News and Commentary

WATCH: Documentarian Goes Behind Scenes At ‘CHAZ,’ Speaks To Leader
Courtesy of Ami Horowitz

In a video posted Wednesday, documentary filmmaker Ami Horowitz went to the heart of the so-called “Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone” in Seattle, known as “CHAZ” or “CHOP,”  to speak to occupiers, including one the group’s leaders, Jaiden Grayson.

Grayson notably downplayed the 9/11 terrorist attacks on U.S. soil, emphasized that “by any means necessary” is not just a slogan but a promise, and advocated for police and the prison system to be “abolished,” not defunded.

Horowitz spoke to a number of demonstrators, all but one of whom advocated for violence and destruction. The outlier, a former Black Panther Party member, called the “autonomous zone” “bulls***” and criticized the movement.

“I think some disruption and looting kind of sends a message to people,” one demonstrator said.

A white female occupier told Horowitz that white people once participated in slavery, so “f*** white people.”

At one point, one of the members claimed CHAZ is peaceful, noting that a “super devout Christian” came to the area to preach against abortion and homosexuality and was left entirely alone. However, the member was interrupted by another man who claimed that the Christian was actually choked out by the fine people of CHAZ.

Grayson, appreciative of Horowitz for actually asking her what the people of CHAZ really want, bluntly told the documentarian, “Every single day that I show up here, I’m not here to peacefully protest. I’m here to disrupt until my demands are met. You cannot rebuild until you break it all the way down. Respond to the demands of the people, or prepare to be met with any means necessary.”

“It’s not a slogan,” she added, “it’s not even a warning. I’m letting people know what comes next.”

“A response to violence is not violence,” Grayson justified.

The radical added that the police and the prison system both need to be “abolished.”

Asked if she feels like an American, Grayson responded, “I am an African brought to America.”

Earlier this month, Horowitz traveled to Minneapolis to speak to protesters and rioters, who popped up across the nation following the death of George Floyd, a black man who died after an officer had his knee on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes – a moment captured in a video that went viral.

“The media narrative has been that the protesters and the violence are distinct,” Horowitz prefaced the video, “but the vast majority of protesters that I spoke to went out of their way to justify, in a non-socially distanced way, the anarchic orgy of violence.”

Throughout the documentarian’s video, the violent protesters justified their theft, bashed America, suggested all cop “b****es” need to be killed, and, at one point, attacked an old man trying to defend his property.


Related: WATCH: Protesters Defend Looting, Destroying Businesses: It’s ‘Slavery Money’

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