RALEIGH, N.C. — It is the job of police to defend the public. Today, a large crowd of people gathered in downtown Raleigh to return the favor - to defend the police. With roughly 40,000 follows on social media, Back the Blue NC held a sizable rally in downtown Raleigh outside of the North Carolina General Assembly building.
Concerned over recent calls to "defund the police" supporters rallied to "defend the police."
"They risk their lives everyday, and most people disparage them," said Rob Palmer, who was part of the rally. Like most people, Palmer said he was terribly disturbed by the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. However, he was also disturbed by some of the protests - and riots - that followed.
“All around the country, including Raleigh, we have seen towns burn. We have seen police standing by and not being able to do anything," he said. “The anger is being taken out on all officers and it shouldn’t be about that," said Jordan Wilson, who also supports back the blue. "The fix should be more money toward funding the police on better training to fix these situations.”
Some of that anger was visible during the rally, when counter-protesters gathered across the street to shout the names of people who have been killed by law enforcement.
Troy Lewis, another attendee and supporter, described a world without police and protection as 'Mad Max,' a world in which anybody can do whatever they want -- good or bad.
Wives of Raleigh Police Department officers put up a tent and handed out baked goods to police officers. They also raised money for the Raleigh Police Department and the organization Latinos for Freedom.