It's The Great Pumpkin Riot, Scott Brown
Now that he's running for Senate in New Hampshire, former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown is totally A Guy From New Hampshire who would never miss the New Hampshirest of all possible events, the Pumpkin Festival in Keene. Even though this folksy college town was a powder keg of white rage just waiting to explode into pumpkin-splattered violence. While Scott was connecting with law-abiding harvest revelers, mobs of angry white youth wreaked havoc just around the corner.
Tear gas filled the air as police in riot gear descended on Keene, New Hampshire, trying to disperse a rowdy crowd that brought chaos to the city's 24th annual Pumpkin Festival... CNN affiliates reported dozens of arrests and the Southwest New Hampshire Mutual Aid Dispatch Center reported multiple ambulances being sent to the scene.
Keene State student Ellery Murray told the Boston Globe, "People were just throwing everything they could find -- rocks, skateboards, buckets, pumpkins. People just got too drunk."
Scott Brown evidently escaped the wilding white mob altogether, more concerned with his own safety and photo-ops than with showing True Leadership. As students were rioting all around him, injuring each other with bottles of Bud Light, Brown, with his gift for youth outreach, could have waded in and played peacemaker, transforming himself overnight into an inter-generational statesman. Instead, he seemed oblivious to the palpable and growing anger of the community toward the cops. And pumpkins.
The Great Pumpkin Riot of 2014 should force Keene's white community to confront the fact that white-on-orange violence is out of control, and the college bro rage against the police -- for busting up one too many keggers, probably -- has turned understandably violent. One of the rioters came from as far away as Massachusetts to stand up to The Man because, he said, it would be "fucking wicked." There is no confirmation as to whether he was bussed in by activists to confront the police and cause mayhem. But he did explain, “It’s just like a rush. You’re revolting from the cops. It’s a blast to do things that you’re not supposed to do.” When will moderate white leaders speak up and use their influence to get these dangerously angry youths off the streets?
John Oliver singled out Keene, New Hampshire, during a Last Week Tonight segment on the militarization of police, thoughtlessly mocking the local cops for requesting a grant to purchase a BearCat armored vehicle. Keene's application presciently named the Pumpkin Festival as a possible target for terrorist attack.
Until these crazed criminals can be subdued, standard operating procedure calls for a harshly enforced curfew and riot squads on every corner. We can't let these thugs take over Keene or before you know it, they'll be storming through Manchester and maybe even Concord. Stand strong, New Hampshire!
You can follow Beth on Twitter for the latest on #pumpkinjustice