On this day in 1970: The Kent State Massacre

by Ben Hoffman

From Wikipedia:
Richard Nixon had been elected President in 1968, promising to end the Vietnam War. In November 1969, the My Lai Massacre was exposed, prompting widespread outrage around the world and leading to increased public opposition to the war. In addition, the following month saw the first draft lottery instituted since World War II. The war had appeared to be winding down throughout 1969, so the new invasion of Cambodia angered those who believed it only exacerbated the conflict. Many young people, including college students and teachers, were concerned about being drafted to fight in a war that they strongly opposed. The expansion of that war into another country appeared to them to have increased that risk, although the number of troops serving in Vietnam had peaked in 1967, well before that time. Across the country, campuses erupted in protests in what Time called “a nation-wide student strike”, setting the stage for the events of early May 1970.

On Monday, May 4, a protest was scheduled to be held at noon, as had been planned three days earlier. University officials attempted to ban the gathering, handing out 12,000 leaflets stating that the event was canceled. Despite this, an estimated 2,000 people gathered[18] on the university’s Commons, near Taylor Hall. The protest began with the ringing of the campus’s iron Victory Bell (which had historically been used to signal victories in football games) to mark the beginning of the rally, and the first protester began to speak.

Fearing that the situation might escalate into another violent protest, Companies A and C, 1/145th Infantry and Troop G of the 2/107th Armored Cavalry, Ohio Army National Guard (ARNG), the units on the campus grounds, attempted to disperse the students. The legality of the dispersal was later debated at a subsequent wrongful death and injury trial. On appeal, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled that authorities did indeed have the right to disperse the crowd.

The dispersal process began late in the morning with campus patrolman Harold Rice,[19] riding in a National Guard Jeep, approaching the students to read them an order to disperse or face arrest. The protesters responded by throwing rocks, striking one campus Patrolman and forcing the Jeep to retreat.[7]

Just before noon, the Guard returned and again ordered the crowd to disperse. When most of the crowd refused, the Guard used tear gas. Because of wind, the tear gas had little effect in dispersing the crowd, and some launched a second volley of rocks toward the Guard’s line, too distant to have any effect, to chants of “Pigs off campus!” The students lobbed the tear gas canisters back at the National Guardsmen, who wore gas masks.

When it was obvious the crowd was not going to disperse, a group of 77 National Guard troops from A Company and Troop G, with bayonets fixed on their weapons, began to advance upon the hundreds of protesters. As the guardsmen advanced, the protesters retreated up and over Blanket Hill, heading out of The Commons area. Once over the hill, the students, in a loose group, moved northeast along the front of Taylor Hall, with some continuing toward a parking lot in front of Prentice Hall (slightly northeast of and perpendicular to Taylor Hall). The guardsmen pursued the protesters over the hill, but rather than veering left as the protesters had, they continued straight, heading down toward an athletic practice field enclosed by a chain link fence. Here they remained for about ten minutes, unsure of how to get out of the area short of retracing their entrance path (an action some guardsmen considered might be viewed as a retreat). During this time, the bulk of the students congregated off to the left and front of the guardsmen, approximately 150 ft (50m) to 225 ft (75m) away, on the veranda of Taylor Hall. Others were scattered between Taylor Hall and the Prentice Hall parking lot, while still others – perhaps 35 or 40 – were standing in the parking lot, or dispersing through the lot as they had been previously ordered.

While on the practice field, the guardsmen generally faced the parking lot which was about 100 yards away. At one point, some of the guardsmen knelt and aimed their weapons toward the parking lot, then stood up again. For a few moments, several guardsmen formed a loose huddle and appeared to be talking to one another. The guardsmen appeared to be unclear as to what to do next. They had cleared the protesters from the Commons area, and many students had left, but many stayed and were still angrily confronting the soldiers, some throwing rocks and tear gas canisters. At the end of about ten minutes, the guardsmen began to retrace their steps back up the hill toward the Commons area. Some of the students on the Taylor Hall veranda began to move slowly toward the soldiers as the latter passed over the top of the hill and headed back down into the Commons.

At this point, at 12:24 p.m.,[1], a Sgt. Taylor turned and began firing at the students with his .45 pistol. A number of Guardsmen nearest the students also turned and fired their M1 Garand rifles at the students. In all, 29 of the 77 guardsmen claimed to have fired their weapons, using a final total of 67 bullets. The shooting was determined to have lasted only 13 seconds, although a New York Times reporter[who?] stated that “it appeared to go on, as a solid volley, for perhaps a full minute or a little longer.” The question of why the shots were fired remains widely debated.
Photo taken from the perspective of where the Ohio National Guard soldiers stood when they opened fire on the students.
Bullet hole in a sculpture by Don Drumm caused by a .30 caliber round fired by the Ohio National Guard at Kent State on May 4, 1970.

The Adjutant General of the Ohio National Guard told reporters that a sniper had fired on the guardsmen, which itself remains a debated allegation. Many guardsmen later testified that they were in fear for their lives, which was questioned partly because of the distance between them and the students killed or wounded. Time magazine later concluded that “triggers were not pulled accidentally at Kent State”. The President’s Commission on Campus Unrest avoided probing the question regarding why the shootings happened. Instead, it harshly criticized both the protesters and the Guardsmen, but it concluded that “the indiscriminate firing of rifles into a crowd of students and the deaths that followed were unnecessary, unwarranted, and inexcusable.”

The shootings killed four students and wounded nine. Two of the four students killed, Allison Krause and Jeffrey Miller, had participated in the protest, and the other two, Sandra Scheuer and William Knox Schroeder, had been walking from one class to the next at the time of their deaths. Schroeder was also a member of the campus ROTC chapter. Of those wounded, none was closer than 71 feet to the guardsmen. Of those killed, the nearest (Miller) was 265 feet away, and their average distance from the guardsmen was 345 feet.

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43 Comments to “On this day in 1970: The Kent State Massacre”

  1. Mr. Hoffman,

    What is the purpose of posting this topic ?

    • It’s the 40 year anniversary of a major event in American history. Something that should never have happened and should never again happen. It goes against everything this country is supposed to stand for.

  2. Mr. Hoffman,

    I was too young for this, so I know you were . Why are you trying to revive and relive the hippie culture of the 60s ?

  3. Mr. Hoffman,

    ” No, the real question is: why are you so offended by this post? ”

    Because I want to know why all these hippies were wasting “sombody’s” money in College . The worthless pieces of S**t. I could not afford to go to college . With my parents help I barely could afford to go 2 years of electronics school .

    If my kids wasted my money in college by protesting anything and causing riots and property damage, they would have been out of school and in the streets in a heart beat .

    You might have nostalgia for those times, I do not . Those kids were 5-7 years ahead of me . Aside of being jealous of all the girls the scumbags seem to get with no effort, and of course the best music ever made, I see little value in the anti-war hippie drug culture of Bill and Hillary Clinton’s youth .

    • [I could not afford to go to college . With my parents help I barely could afford to go 2 years of electronics school .]

      You’re lucky. I worked as a laborer in an equipment rental yard. I’d help out the mechanics when I could and eventually became a mechanic. I didn’t go to college until I was in my 30s.

      [Those kids were 5-7 years ahead of me .]

      Same here.

  4. Mr. Hoffman,

    ” I didn’t go to college until I was in my 30s. ”

    How did you pay for college ?

    • [How did you pay for college ?]

      I didn’t. Grants and scholarships covered 100% of my tuition after my first semester. The biggest cost was living expenses. I earned some money selling computers, fixing up cars and selling them, and whatever else I could do to make a few bucks, but I still had to take out 10s of thousands of dollars in student loans. It was well worth it, though. I finished college just as the tech boom was really taking off. My first job was at Lockheed Martin Aerospace.

  5. Mr. Hoffman,

    ” I didn’t. Grants and scholarships covered 100% of my tuition after my first semester. ”

    I usually am opposed to government freebies, but in your case I’d like to think that my tax dollars helped to make you the man you are . 🙂

    Unless it was all State money, which me being in Pa. I could not contribute to your college fund.

    At any rate, my point is that since you put a lot of your own money into your college experience, you were not out rioting .

    • [I usually am opposed to government freebies, but in your case I’d like to think that my tax dollars helped to make you the man you are .]

      See that… The government is capable of doing some good. 🙂

      [At any rate, my point is that since you put a lot of your own money into your college experience, you were not out rioting .]

      Two of the students killed were just crossing the campus on their way to class. But I’d like to think I would have been out there protesting as well. They had just re-instituted the draft, which meant as soon as they were out of college, they might be sent off to fight in an unwinable war.

  6. Mr. Hoffman,

    ” they might be sent off to fight in an unwinable war. ”

    Didn’t you guys say that about Iraq ?

    • Sorry about the anonymous, I was using a different Browser and did not notice that my ID did not come up .

    • [Didn’t you guys say that about Iraq ?]

      We may not have lost the war in Iraq, but we damned sure didn’t win. At a cost of over a trillion dollars and over 4,000 American lives, doing a cost/benefit analysis on our invasion and occupation, it will go down in history as one of the biggest blunders in U.S. history.

  7. Mr. Hoffman,

    ” doing a cost/benefit analysis on our invasion and occupation, it will go down in history as one of the biggest blunders in U.S. history. ”

    I have no doubt if you did the analysis that would be true . Like your cost benefit analysis of the Porkulus Bill, and the Obama Care Bill . How about we do a cost analysis of American lives saved ?

    4,000 lives sacrificed saved many times that number .

    • How many lives were saved by invading and occupying a country that was of no threat to us?

      • Leaving the “a country that was of no threat to us” b.s. aside, how about the fact that we’ve saved over 100 lives a day with Saddam removed?

        Estimates by human rights organizations put civilian deaths in Iraq under Hussein’s 24 year regime at over 1 million. That doesn’t include the torture, rape, and beating of innocent Iraqi’s, either.

        Hussein was arrogant, stupid, and ignorant enough to give America a full-on excuse to invade. In addition to breaking every UN resolution put to him, he had successfully convinced THE WORLD that he had WMD’s. Regardless of the “why” we went to war, lives have been – and will continue to be – saved as a result.

        Let’s not forget either, that prior to the “invasion”, Hussein was given the opportunity to surrender and he refused. The Taliban were also given the opportunity to surrender and cough up Bin Laden, and they refused, too. Why? because these people are hell-bent on protecting torturers, rapists, and murderers which contrary to the left’s opinions will not stop their actions if America simply decides to stay at home.

        America is the only country that can do the dirty work required to remove these freaks from power and save lives. It has done the world a favor by getting rid of Saddam, and every day they’re in Afghanistan killing religious zealots who think throwing acid in young girl’s faces is “God’s will”, they’re continuing to do the world a favor as well. It’s tragic and unfortunate that these efforts cause American, Canadian, and British soldiers’ lives, but that’s the reality of a war that they’ve invited, started, and insist on continuing.

      • [The Taliban were also given the opportunity to surrender and cough up Bin Laden, and they refused, too.]

        Actually (in the real world), the Taliban offered to try bin Laden in Afghanistan under Islamic law.
        http://archives.cnn.com/2001/US/10/07/ret.us.taliban/

        Bin Laden would have been executed a long time ago had we accepted their offer. Instead, he’s sipping pina coladas in the mountains of Chitral.

      • [Bin Laden would have been executed a long time ago had we accepted their offer.]

        Ya, that’s “real world”. They would have really tried him, he would have really been sentenced, and they would have really executed him. Keep smoking! They were lying about wanting to try him just as much as we were lying about wanting to actually capture or kill him, but that’s not the point – the point is that American troops are still saving lives.

        Sucks the way Bush made it happen, but overall I’m HAPPY that Bush lied and finally gave us an excuse we could act on to stop these wackos from raping, gassing, torturing, and murdering a million more. Obviously a million innocent civilian lives lost before the war wasn’t enough for the left to justifying doing anything up until then, so if some yellow cake story is what it took to stop Saddam and his regime, the world’s a better place for it and our American troops (and British, and Canadian troops) are heroes, not villains.

        And while they’re off saving lives in Iraq and Afghanistan, the left should be hoping, as I do, that Obama conjures up his own “yellow cake” story within regions like Darfur so we can go in and actually save some lives there, too.

        Wouldn’t that be nice, or would the left still prefer the diplomacy route? Sending our troops there would do far more in a day than what Clooney and Bono have done in years, and would save tens of thousands if not millions of people as a result.

        With respect, if you’re going to say that Americans are killing civilians and therefore we shouldn’t be in Afghanistan or Iraq, fine, but then state just as clearly and definitively that you think diplomacy actually saves more lives and is a faster and more effective way to do it, because the two go hand-in-hand.

      • [With respect, if you’re going to say that Americans are killing civilians and therefore we shouldn’t be in Afghanistan or Iraq]

        I don’t recall ever saying anything like that. You right-wingers just make stuff up.

        Even if we were justified in invading either country, the gross ineptitude in which it was done makes it impossible to defend. We have enough problems here at home to be spending over a trillion dollars policing the world.

      • [I don’t recall ever saying anything like that. You right-wingers just make stuff up.]
        Like you’re the one with a handle on the truth? You just said that Bin Laden would have been dead a long time ago if we just accepted the (gracious offer of the Taliban. Wow. You might as well start believing in Santa Claus, too.

        The only reason the left brings up civilian lives lost in these wars is to protest America being there. Say what you want, but that’s exactly what you were doing as part of yet another fashionable anti-Bush, anti-Republican, anti-Right comment. You left-wingers are far quicker to acknowledge the negative than the positive, but with you and this blog it seems to be all negative when it comes to our troops.

        If I’m so wrong about this, then when was the last article cited or opinion given that speaks one thing about any of the positive work we’re doing over there?

      • Vern, I realize you have no intellectual curiosity, but here’s an interesting article about the Taliban’s relationship with bin Laden:
        http://www.truthout.org/taliban-regime-pressed-bin-laden-anti-us-terror56848

        [Hussein was arrogant, stupid, and ignorant]

        Yes indeed, a worthy opponent of our previous president. 🙂

        [America is the only country that can do the dirty work required to remove these freaks from power and save lives.]

        So you think the U.S. should be the world’s police. I say we have enough problems here, especially our debt. We could have done a lot of good things for our country with the trillion dollars we spent on the invasion and occupation of Iraq.

      • Ben,

        That’s a very interesting article – thank you. I originally thought they shuttled Bin Laden over to Pakistan to protect him – after reading that, maybe it was in fact to get rid of the bomb-magnet. 🙂

        [So you think the U.S. should be the world’s police. I say we have enough problems here, especially our debt. We could have done a lot of good things for our country with the trillion dollars we spent on the invasion and occupation of Iraq.]

        There’s a lot of things that I think were wrong, and are wrong with the US going to war in Afghanistan and Iraq. Lives lost and huge costs are two of them. I also have no respect for Bush whatsoever in how he justified going to war – it was a flat out lie.

        As for America being the world police, however, that’s more complicated. I don’t believe it SHOULD fall on America’s shoulders, but I believe that unfortunately it does, as the UN is useless and no other country has the capability for quick, decisive action like we do. I believe America is largely unappreciated in the role it plays in this capacity.

        My point in this post, however, was in reference to lives lost and saved, and is it worth the lives to wipe out these tyrants and crush these regimes. In my opinion, yes, because it’s not going to happen through diplomacy. Millions have died waiting for these dictators to finally “place nice”, and I believe we have a moral obligation when we’re strong to protect the weak when we have the capability to do so. People who commit acts like these (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/asia/article3882980.ece) should be wiped off the face of the planet, and if no one else has the cahones to do it, then I believe it should be us.

        Now do we need to spend $1 trillion to do it? I don’t think so, but that’s another topic. Another topic is how our desire not to appear as warmongers diminishes the ability of our troops to go in and get the job done right the first time, which has unnecessarily prolonged the war.

  8. Mr. Hoffman,

    ” How many lives were saved by invading and occupying a country that was of no threat to us? ”

    It could be in the hundreds of thousands . Besides Iraq was a threat to us . Iraq, just like Iran was a credible threat to the whole region. Thanks to our good friends in Europe the sanctions were falling apart .

    I’m sure you remember ” your ” guys telling the world that George Bush was just creating more terrorists in the World. That our Iraq War was a recruiting tool for Islamic Terrorists, that Bush was the reason Muslims hated the US . Say you remember that, please.

    Well it would seem that Obama created the NY City bomber. I do not really believe it . I am only applying your standards to the situation .

    http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-bomb-motive-20100508,0,5403952.story

    ” Agents interviewing Shahzad, 30, who lived in Connecticut, also learned that he was upset over repeated CIA drone attacks on militants in Pakistan, his native country.”

  9. Mr. Hoffman,

    What you are requesting I do is not even physically possible . In this case it is better to do unto others before they do unto you . 🙂

  10. V.R. Kaine said: As for America being the world police, however, that’s more complicated. I don’t believe it SHOULD fall on America’s shoulders, but I believe that unfortunately it does, as the UN is useless and no other country has the capability for quick, decisive action like we do. I believe America is largely unappreciated in the role it plays in this capacity.

    America is ‘largely unappreciated’ because America does not believe in playing by international rules, nor does it subscribe to the various lawful international institutions that have been set up or sponsored by the UN. (International Court of Justice sticks out for me.) Or really even the Geneva Conventions? I really do love the unctuous legal wrangling deployed in redefining prisoners of war into a different category which somehow magically makes ‘enemy combatants’ a different category.

    Anyhow, so if the US won’t play by the rules, why should other countries?

    • There’s a lot of things about America’s “humanity” that could and should be improved, but let’s face it – the UN is a joke. I’m no fan of politicians, and even less of a fan of bureaucrats – people who talk much and do little, if anything at all.

      [Anyhow, so if the US won’t play by the rules, why should other countries?]
      The same could be asked in reverse.

      • [Anyhow, so if the US won’t play by the rules, why should other countries?]

        The same could be asked in reverse.

        You do not get to claim this. The US sees itself as a great power and to a certain extent it is. But justifying its defiance of the International Court of law and the Geneva conventions because Sudan is not following the rules makes an argument for my point of view.

        Because the US decided to act solely on its self interest, as other countries do, the UN is ineffective.

        The US has the means to set the gold standard of what good international behaviour and rather than undermining the UNit could take an active role and work with the international community to resolved disputes.

        By ignoring the UN because it does not align with American Foreign Policy goals the precedent is set for other countries to also take a similar selfish approach.

      • [Because the US decided to act solely on its self interest, as other countries do, the UN is ineffective.]
        You’ve got the other 97% of the world’s population to un-corrupt before you can ever expect anything effective out of the U.N.. In the meantime, let’s all continue to play diplomacy by inviting these dictators onto UN panels and committees, shaking their hands for photo ops, and kissing their asses in the name of civility while hundreds of thousands of people die. What do you honestly think the ICC could do in a place like Darfur, and how quickly do you honestly think it could do anything? While I admire your hope, I’m amazed at how much faith you put in such an inept institution like the U.N. and how much fault you put at the feet of the U.S. for its ineptitude.

      • [The US has the means to set the gold standard of what good international behaviour and rather than undermining the UN it could take an active role and work with the international community to resolved disputes.]
        So then you criticize the US for not “playing ball” and bowing to the rules of an organization that is head-to-toe far more corrupt than the US has ever been, and is manipulated and controlled by the veto powers of two countries with horrible human rights and environmental stewardship track records?

        The UN represents an ideal in theory, but it is the worst of politics and diplomacy in reality. Do you honestly think that none of the other members of the UN Security Council knew about China ignoring UN weapons embargoes in Darfur before the BBC broke the story? (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/world/africa/7503428.stm) Do you think that China or the ICC is actually going to do something about it? Where’s your public criticism of China over it serving its own national oil interests in Sudan, equal to criticism that which you spew at the US? Where’s the criticism of the UN or the ICC in its lack of action in that region?

        All countries should have a higher standard that they hold themselves accountable to, but the UN is NOT it. If I’m wrong, then explain to me why the U.N. didn’t, wouldn’t, or couldn’t act to save the people in Rwanda, and tell me that wasn’t the same diplomatic b.s. that the U.N. continues to be mired in now.

  11. My point in this post, however, was in reference to lives lost and saved, and is it worth the lives to wipe out these tyrants and crush these regimes. In my opinion, yes, because it’s not going to happen through diplomacy

    You make it sound like you are actually after evil doers and ‘making things right’ in the world. Do you really believe that if Iraq was just a oasis in the desert the US would have removed him? The Iraq war was about american energy interests and access to those interests.

    Millions have died waiting for these dictators to finally “place nice”, and I believe we have a moral obligation when we’re strong to protect the weak when we have the capability to do so

    Perhaps then the US should stop sponsoring said dictators and oppressors the world over? The US does because dictatorships and ‘tyrants’ are almost universally good for business. And what is good for business is good for the US – morality does not even enter into the equation.

    So the US is following its ‘obligations’ although certainly not the ones you are talking about. It is closer to this: The US supports regimes that are friendly to US business interests, regardless of human rights abuses, international reputation or inherent morally ‘goodness’ or ‘badness’. War is indeed a racket.

  12. I believe we have a moral obligation when we’re strong to protect the weak when we have the capability to do so.

    Indeed.

    • Yep, it sucks, but better us doing it than the Russians or Chinese. Btw, Panama, Nicaragua, the Dominican Republic, etc. – where did they all get their development loans from? IMF and the World Bank, i.e. the U.N.. Read “Confessions of an Economic Hitman” if you haven’t. Nasty, nasty stuff.

      Also, the video takes the position that “it would be better for us to stay out of world conflicts”. I don’t know about you, but I would have much rather seen the lives in Rwanda and Darfur spared through American military intervention.

  13. The Arbourist,

    I visited your site and I congratulate you on the Terrorist video. I thought you were just an Anti Christian, Anti Capitalist, Anti American, Canadian Commie . You actually hate all organized religions, except maybe the Church of Global Warming .

    I don’t agree with much of anything you preach, but I respect your honesty .

    • Thanks Mr.Scott. 🙂

      I think that may be the closest we get to being civil :>

      Now go exploit some poor people you capitalist running dog, I have some people that need to be sent via a state committee, to the gulag known as Calgary.

      Cheers 😉

  14. On Monday, May 4, a protest was scheduled to be held at noon, as had been planned three days earlier.

    Friday, May 1

    Trouble exploded in town around midnight when people left a bar and began throwing beer bottles at cars and breaking downtown store fronts. In the process they broke a bank window, setting off an alarm. The news spread quickly and it resulted in several bars closing early to avoid trouble. Before long, more people had joined the vandalism and looting.

    By the time police arrived, a crowd of 120 had already gathered. Some people from the crowd had already lit a small bonfire in the street. The crowd appeared to be a mix of bikers, students, and out-of town youths who regularly came to Kent’s bars. A few members of the crowd began to throw beer bottles at the police, and then started yelling obscenities at them. The disturbance lasted for about an hour before the police restored order. By that time most of the bars were closed in the downtown area of Kent.

    Saturday, May 2

    When the National Guard arrived in town that evening (at around 10 P.M.), a large demonstration was already under way on the campus, and the campus Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) building [11] was burning. The arsonists were never apprehended and no one was injured in the fire.[12] More than a thousand protesters surrounded the building and cheered its burning. Several Kent firemen and police officers were struck by rocks and other objects while attempting to extinguish the blaze. Several fire engine companies had to be called in because protesters carried the fire hose into the Commons and slashed it.[13][14][15] The National Guard made numerous arrests and used tear gas; at least one student was slightly wounded with a bayonet.[16]

    Sunday, May 3

    During the day some students came into downtown Kent to help with cleanup efforts after the rioting, which met with mixed reactions from local businessmen. Mayor Satrom, under pressure from frightened citizens, ordered a curfew until further notice.

    Around 8:00 p.m., another rally was held on the campus Commons. By 8:45 p.m. the Guardsmen used tear gas to disperse the crowd, and the students reassembled at the intersection of Lincoln and Main Streets, holding a sit-in in the hopes of gaining a meeting with Mayor Satrom and President White. At 11:00 p.m., the Guard announced that a curfew had gone into effect and began forcing the students back to their dorms. A few students were bayoneted by Guardsmen.[18]

    Monday, May 4

    The dispersal process began late in the morning with campus patrolman Harold Rice,[20] riding in a National Guard Jeep, approaching the students to read them an order to disperse or face arrest. The protesters responded by throwing rocks, striking one campus Patrolman and forcing the Jeep to retreat.

    Just before noon, the Guard returned and again ordered the crowd to disperse. When most of the crowd refused, the Guard used tear gas. Because of wind, the tear gas had little effect in dispersing the crowd, and some launched a second volley of rocks toward the Guard’s line, too distant to have any effect, to chants of “Pigs off campus!” The students lobbed the tear gas canisters back at the National Guardsmen, who wore gas masks.

    The guardsmen appeared to be unsure as to what to do next. They had cleared the protesters from the Commons area, and many students had left, but many stayed and were still angrily confronting the soldiers, some throwing rocks and tear gas canisters. At the end of about ten minutes, the guardsmen began to retrace their steps back up the hill toward the Commons area. Some of the students on the Taylor Hall veranda began to move slowly toward the soldiers as the latter passed over the top of the hill and headed back down into the Commons.

    I wonder if it ever occurred to the kids that when a man with a uniform and gun tells you to leave that perhaps you should, ya know, leave?

    With that said, having soldiers shoot kids is tragic.

    Just don’t pretend that these were elementary kids showing up at the circus. These were adults, the same age as the soldiers in Vietnam serving in the Army. They displayed a pattern of violence and aggression.

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