Cleveland: Protesters Arrested After Woman Attempts To Burn U.S. Flag Outside RNC [Video]

Several protesters, including a woman who was attempting to burn the U.S. flag, were arrested during a protest outside the Republican National Convention in Cleveland Ohio, earlier today. Video captured by Fox News cameras show the moment a woman protester is seen taking the U.S. Flag from a packaging and sitting on the ground in an attempt to set it on fire. She is also seen surrounded by a swarm of protesters who could be seen the filming the attempt. However, before the flag could be burned, a police officer dashes into the crowd and snatches the flag away. This is followed by pushing and shoving among the people assembled there as a result of which one police officer falls to the ground. Cleveland police later confirmed that two of their officers were injured in the incident.

The video was captured by a Fox Business cameraman who was near the scene where the incident happened. A Fox News reporter who was there also reported that one of the protesters was arrested following the incident. A Cleveland Police officer told him that they acted because burning of any object on the streets of Cleveland is a violation of city law and the officers acted as per protocol. He also added that every attempt was made to ensure minimal arrests.

Several other websites have posted a slightly different version of the flag burning event at Cleveland. According to The Conservative Tribune, the protesters attempting to burn the flag were confronted by a group of bikers who were at the spot, fire extinguishers in their hands, ready to put out the blaze. Apart from the bikers, there were also a small group of firefighters from Cleveland who were ready to put out the fire. The publication, however, reports that protesters were able to burn the flag following which police officers used pepper spray to break up the crowd. The flames on the burning flag was doused following which several arrests were made.

We have embedded a few tweets posted by people who were near the scene, below.

An image of the remains of the burnt flag was also posted online.

While the identities of the people who were arrested remain under wraps, several reports say they were Communist party supporters. The flag-burning episode at Cleveland has evoked sharp responses from people who watched it happen. We have selected a few comments posted on a Facebook thread detailing the incident.

“Everyone in the circle that is not attempting to stop her might as well be burning a flag as well. Good on the Cops for stopping her.”

“Move to another country then. Why are you even here? Nothing more shameful to our country than burning the very flag that signifies us as Americans. You should be in jail!”

“You call yourself an American? If you don’t like this country find another and leave.You know how many men and women died for that flag so you could protest? Pathetic excuse for an American is what you are. Maybe you are not even a citizen and if that is the case get the hell out of America we don’t want you.

There were contrasting opinions too. One commenter said the following.

“It may be ignorant of her wanting to burn the U.S. flag as I would see it as offensive for my military service. However, it’s her freedom of speech. There was no need for cops. She should just be ignored”

Do you think burning the U.S. flag is a legitimate way of protest?

[Photo by John Minchillo/AP Images]