Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Kid Rock and Detroit’s Restoration

 

Detroit has a sad past with deadly riots, so I was little trepidatious when I headed downtown to the opening night of the Kid Rock concert on Sept. 12. Anti-Trump protestors were expected to swarm the streets surrounding the new Little Caesars Arena, which Kid Rock was inaugurating. I had received a note from his publicist that he would be sharing a special message with his fans regarding his political views and plans for Michigan. Smelling a formal announcement that he would run against Debbie Stabenow for Senate, press swarmed the place, and I was one of them.

Word was that Antifa was planning to create mayhem, and I was nervous enough about it to ask a buff client of mine who had military bodyguard experience to accompany me. My stalwart friend and superior half of @WhiskeyPolitics, @davesussman, worried that I might get my head bashed in whilst chatting up Antifa thugs, so he firmly suggested that I just stay away from them. Having reported on a near-riot the day Michigan passed Right-to-Work, I had no intention of taking on crazed Antifa people, but of course, once I got there with a big bodyguard, how could I resist?

An hour or so ahead of the concert, I immediately noticed the large, no, huge police presence. Officers in uniform, security personnel, mounted police, plainclothes detectives; the street looked more like a police convention than anything else.

“Where are the protestors?” I asked one. He shrugged. “Do you expect trouble?”

“Not today, Ma’am,” he smiled. Left unspoken, I imagined, were the words “We are prepared.”

The rumbling roar of big Harleys interrupted our conversation as scores of bikers lined up double file on the other side of the street. As they made a dramatic show of “force” as one bystander put it, the organized protest march began. Shepherded by police cruisers and surrounded discreetly by men in blue, as well as reporters hoping to catch dramatic footage, the parade of protestors passed slowly in front of me, near a multiple-story restaurant that was serving pizza and beer all evening.

Looking up, I saw patrons offer good-natured obscene gestures to the marchers below. The protestors, to their credit were fairly sedate with two notable exceptions: Bullhorn Girl and Hysterical Free Speech Girl (with cute backpack).

Most of the procession was divided into groups; National Action Network at the front (No Justice, No Peace), and behind them in descending order, nutty and/or isolated little knots of what appeared to be like-minded individuals protesting Trump, or Kid Rock, or capitalism, or Republicans, or whatever bogeyman they had conjured up.

I saw a couple of Black Lives Matter signs, and SDS even made an appearance, although their little red banner looked hastily homemade by the half dozen or so people who bore it. Nearly to the end, the protestors looked mostly sincere and earnest. Many appeared to be in jovial spirits.

The protestors passed me in less than three minutes, and if you’ve ever seen a circus roll into town with little dancing dogs and clowns bringing up the rear, that’s what the individuals reminded me of at the end.

Throughout, the police were very, very alert, and you could not walk a half block without passing a clutch of officers. This was in such stark contrast to my experience with Steven Crowder at Michigan’s 2012 Right-to-Work protest, when 5,000 union protestors, egged on by Jimmy Hoffa Jr., destroyed thousands of dollars of private property, shoved, threatened, and terrified our small group of AFP supporters, and hurt some people who couldn’t get out of the tent fast enough. Shamefully, not an officer in sight.

Detroit’s Chief of Police, James Craig, deserves a lot of credit for providing an environment that protected everyone’s right to free speech while making sure that no one was going to start bashing heads. Although it might have been humorous to see Antifa idiots try to attack the combined force of Detroit’s Finest and 20,000 big, burly, happy-go-lucky fans, it was not to be. Anita was a no-show.

I’ve lived in Michigan my whole life, and I love Detroit. It’s a city full of stories and adventure dating back to the 1700s. It was once literally a glittering city on a hill, and it hurt to see it hacked to death by racial riots, mismanagement, government graft, and finally the great teardown of its tattered bones. The population was halved during the tenure of our last Democrat governor, Jennifer Granholm*, and stands at around 600,000 today.

But what I saw before the Kid Rock concert was something old and reassuring. Like the theme sounded by Whiskey Politics’s sponsor, SavetheWest.com, this was a victory for Detroit. In this little patch of city in the middle of a country torn by racial strife, hatred for our institutions, the petty violence of Antifa, and lackadaisical enforcement of the rule of law … was order and freedom. It was a little triumph of Western Civilization. Detroit, full up with its sad destruction, decided to take a firm stand against the purveyors of chaos, which allowed everyone to peacefully express their opinions and pursue their own happiness.

The end of this story is that Kid Rock got to tease everyone yet again about his political aspirations and then entertained them without incident. With a gleaming new arena and a revitalized downtown, the next chapter in Detroit’s story might be decidedly more upbeat than the last.

*Jennifer Granholm scrambled out of Michigan after her second term in office, and landed a professorship at UC Berkeley.

There are 32 comments.

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  1. Kay of MT Member

    Nice report for a change. Glad to see progress of restoring the city.

    • #1
    • September 26, 2017, at 9:00 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  2. drlorentz Member
    drlorentz Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Melissa Praemonitus: the next chapter in Detroit’s story might be decidedly more upbeat than the last.

    I certainly hope you’re right about that. It’s good to see that people have not given up.

    • #2
    • September 26, 2017, at 9:10 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  3. Arahant Member

    Melissa Praemonitus: *Jennifer Granholm scrambled out of Michigan after her second term in office, and landed a professorship at UC Berkely, Ca.

    And we’re quite happy to send California all the Canadians they want.

    • #3
    • September 26, 2017, at 9:56 AM PDT
    • 8 likes
  4. Umbra Fractus Coolidge
    Umbra Fractus Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    These people didn’t even know what Kid Rock was going to say. Ultimately they’re protesting the very existence of Republicans and Conservatives.

    • #4
    • September 26, 2017, at 10:48 AM PDT
    • 12 likes
  5. Melissa Praemonitus Member
    Melissa Praemonitus

    Kay of MT (View Comment):
    Nice report for a change. Glad to see progress of restoring the city.

    Thanks, Kay!

    drlorentz (View Comment):
    I certainly hope you’re right about that. It’s good to see that people have not given up.

    There’s a certain romance in old cities like Detroit, and most of us have deep roots there; My mom’s grandfather “chose a wife” from a selection of women at an orphanage in Detroit, and my father’s mother landed there after Ellis Island. My Dad was a kid there during the last few years of the depression. My granny told me that during prohibition, she had a little speakeasy in the basement, selling bootleg liquor and homemake beer.

    Arahant (View Comment):
    And we’re quite happy to send California all the Canadians they want.

    Except Steven Crowder!

    Umbra Fractus (View Comment):
    These people didn’t even know what Kid Rock was going to say. Ultimately they’re protesting the very existence of Republicans and Conservatives.

    Yes, this was your basic local anti everything rally. There was even a lone guy with really big picture of an aborted baby who was protesting Kid Rock because he was not sufficiently pro-life. A lot of these people were like that loon who snatches the mic “to ask a question” and won’t stop talking about some weird pet grievance at political events. If these are the last foot soldiers the left has, they are in big trouble.

    • #5
    • September 26, 2017, at 11:32 AM PDT
    • 7 likes
  6. DocJay Inactive

     I was little trepidatious, yet always bodacious.

    • #6
    • September 26, 2017, at 12:01 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  7. Dave Sussman Contributor

    Video, or it didn’t happen.

    • #7
    • September 26, 2017, at 12:05 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  8. Robert McReynolds Inactive

    I so hope Mr. Rock wins and becomes Senator Rock. Whatever is still poking out above the shoulders of the political elite after Trump will certainly vaporize into nothing if Mr. Rock wins.

    • #8
    • September 26, 2017, at 12:42 PM PDT
    • 9 likes
  9. Melissa Praemonitus Member
    Melissa Praemonitus

    Dave Sussman (View Comment):
    Video, or it didn’t happen.

    I have tiptoed into the world of starring in video interviews, and will never go back. I’ll put up a video, but the original one with my voiceover is unintentionally hilarious. I cannot seem to keep a certain uptight tone of portentous doom out of my voice and cadence. It is fodder for satire. You however, were made for this work, and to you I leave it!

    • #9
    • September 26, 2017, at 1:10 PM PDT
    • 7 likes
  10. Melissa Praemonitus Member
    Melissa Praemonitus

    Robert McReynolds (View Comment):
    I so hope Mr. Rock wins and becomes Senator Rock. Whatever is still poking out above the shoulders of the political elite after Trump will certainly vaporize into nothing if Mr. Rock wins.

    To the extent that I’m plugged into Michigan’s network of activists and political old hands, Mr. Ritchie will have an unprecedented grassroots, boots on the ground army ready to mobilize should he announce. I’ve already heard from about 6 people who are dying to work for him, and many more who can’t wait to volunteer. Polls show him tied with Stabenow, even with half a dozen other Republicans considered to be running. If he runs, he will win, and it will be soon much fun.

    Regarding his qualifications; somehow Debbie Stabenow has become a very powerful Senator despite having no real world experience with starting or running a business, making payroll, or having to compete in a capitalist system. She simply graduated with a masters in social work and got elected to one office after another. Kid Rock is a real business success story. I’m personally sick of career politicians whose only talents are campaigning, raising money and ruling over others.

    • #10
    • September 26, 2017, at 1:20 PM PDT
    • 10 likes
  11. Melissa Praemonitus Member
    Melissa Praemonitus

    Robert McReynolds (View Comment):
    I so hope Mr. Rock wins and becomes Senator Rock. Whatever is still poking out above the shoulders of the political elite after Trump will certainly vaporize into nothing if Mr. Rock wins.

    To the limited extent that I’m plugged into Michigan’s network of activists and political old hands, Mr. Ritchie will have an unprecedented grassroots, boots on the ground army ready to mobilize should he announce. I’ve already heard from about 6 people who are dying to work for him, and many more who can’t wait to volunteer. Polls show him tied with Stabenow, even with half a dozen other Republicans considered to be running. If he runs, he will win, and it will be soon much fun.

    Regarding his qualifications; somehow Debbie Stabenow has become a very powerful Senator despite having no real world experience with starting or running a business, making payroll, or having to compete in a capitalist system. She simply graduated with a masters in social work and got elected to one office after another. Kid Rock is a real business success story. I’m personally sick of career politicians whose only talents are campaigning, raising money and ruling over others.

    • #11
    • September 26, 2017, at 1:20 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  12. Lash LaRoche Inactive

    Great post! I certainly hope Kid Rock decides to run.

    • #12
    • September 26, 2017, at 2:49 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  13. CarolJoy, Above Top Secret Coolidge

    Umbra Fractus (View Comment):
    These people didn’t even know what Kid Rock was going to say. Ultimately they’re protesting the very existence of Republicans and Conservatives.

    Well when a group like Antifa can claim as part of their membership all of the very special-ist of special groups created by ID Politics, they know that the their Non-God Over All is with them. (Whomever that Non-God happens to be.)

    I keep thinking that maybe Antifa is the latest reincarnation of the Inquisitors.

    • #13
    • September 26, 2017, at 2:59 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  14. Blondie Thatcher

    Mike LaRoche (View Comment):
    Great post! I certainly hope Kid Rock decides to run.

    Wouldn’t it be a thorn in so many sides should he decide to run and win!

    • #14
    • September 26, 2017, at 3:09 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  15. Hammer, The Member

    So no announcement? I don’t really have any opinion about Kid Rock, since I don’t know anything about him… but I do think it would be interesting to read about his political views.

    • #15
    • September 26, 2017, at 4:05 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  16. Arahant Member

    Melissa Praemonitus (View Comment):
    Except Steven Crowder!

    He was born in Detroit, just as my step-father was. So what if both grew up in Québec? They’re both Americans to me.

    • #16
    • September 26, 2017, at 6:25 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  17. Melissa Praemonitus Member
    Melissa Praemonitus

    Dave Sussman (View Comment):
    Video, or it didn’t happen.

    You might be sorry you asked:

    https://youtu.be/XSJu096v2qI

    • #17
    • September 26, 2017, at 6:26 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  18. Kay of MT Member

    I think that guy liked you!

    • #18
    • September 26, 2017, at 7:59 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  19. Melissa Praemonitus Member
    Melissa Praemonitus

    Kay of MT (View Comment):
    I think that guy liked you!

    I have that effect on people who are really, really drunk. His name is Chad, and when I saw that shirt, I just had to talk to him.

    • #19
    • September 26, 2017, at 9:09 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  20. Lash LaRoche Inactive

    That was a great video, @6foot2inhighheels.

    • #20
    • September 26, 2017, at 9:19 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  21. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge

    I wonder why the cops were there? Maybe to assist AntiFa when they show up?

    • #21
    • September 26, 2017, at 9:33 PM PDT
    • Like
  22. Melissa Praemonitus Member
    Melissa Praemonitus

    Mike LaRoche (View Comment):
    That was a great video, @6foot2inhighheels.

    You are my new best friend, Mike – Thanks! It was fun talking to people, but a very self-conscious exercise to record and listen to my voice. I’m so glad Dave does 99.99% of all the interviews!

    • #22
    • September 26, 2017, at 10:46 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  23. Lash LaRoche Inactive

    Melissa Praemonitus (View Comment):

    Mike LaRoche (View Comment):
    That was a great video, @6foot2inhighheels.

    You are my new best friend, Mike – Thanks! It was fun talking to people, but a very self-conscious exercise to record and listen to my voice. I’m so glad Dave does 99.99% of all the interviews!

    I understand. I’ve never liked the sound of my own recorded voice either.

    • #23
    • September 26, 2017, at 11:17 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  24. Arahant Member

    Mike LaRoche (View Comment):
    I’ve never liked the sound of my own recorded voice either.

    Mine is not so bad…

    • #24
    • September 26, 2017, at 11:20 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  25. Kay of MT Member

    Melissa Praemonitus (View Comment):

    Kay of MT (View Comment):
    I think that guy liked you!

    I have that effect on people who are really, really drunk. His name is Chad, and when I saw that shirt, I just had to talk to him.

    I would have wanted to talk with him for that shirt alone as the reason. I would probably have stood behind you giggling. The smile on your face looks as if you had a hard time not breaking out in laughter as well.

    • #25
    • September 27, 2017, at 6:29 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  26. Kay of MT Member

    Forgot to add, it was a great video, and I enjoyed it very much.

    • #26
    • September 27, 2017, at 6:35 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  27. CB Toder aka Mama Toad Member
    CB Toder aka Mama Toad Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Mike LaRoche (View Comment):
    I’ve never liked the sound of my own recorded voice either.

    Mine is not so bad…

    https://cdn.ricochet.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/madscientist.mp3

    00:00

    00:00

    00:00

    You just love any excuse to post this...

    • #27
    • September 27, 2017, at 8:54 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  28. Arahant Member

    CB Toder aka Mama Toad (View Comment):
    You just love any excuse to post this...

    Well, I could post this one:

    • #28
    • September 27, 2017, at 9:19 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  29. Misthiocracy got drunk and Member
    Misthiocracy got drunk and Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I would have a lot more respect for Kid Rock if he was running for Detroit city council (or at the very least the state legislature) instead.

    The US Senate isn’t the place to be if you genuinely want to help fix southeast Michigan.

    • #29
    • September 28, 2017, at 7:21 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  30. Arahant Member

    Misthiocracy (View Comment):
    I would have a lot more respect for Kid Rock if he was running for Detroit city council (or at the very least the state legislature) instead.

    I don’t believe he lives in Detroit proper, so no DCC. As for state legislature, maybe. But obviously he has name recognition, and we need to get rid of our horrid senators. I’ll take a putatively-conservative pop-star over any Democrat that is left in that party. That is if he really runs, of course. He has been playing it coy.

    • #30
    • September 28, 2017, at 2:50 PM PDT
    • 2 likes

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