Fury at New York police for giving Proud Boys free subway ride after drag protest
A group of alt-right “Proud Boys” were allegedly escorted to a New York subway by police and given free rides home after protesting a Drag Queen event.
A video clip shared on Friday (30 December) shows members of the far-right group being escorted by NYPD officers behind the barriers of a New York subway entrance.
A statement from the New York Police Department claims the escort was to “deescalate” a confrontation between the far-right group and LGBTQ+ counter-protesters.
“The Proud Boys got escorted almost 10 blocks away from Drag Story Hour by police and then let into the subway for free,” the video’s poster wrote. “The NYPD tickets and arrest poor people daily for not paying the fare.”
In the clip, the recorder can be heard asking why the group didn’t have to pay the fare, to which one of the Proud Boys members responded: “We’re special. Thank you. Appreciate it, from your taxes.”
The same person then asks a police officer: “I have to pay for the fare but they don’t?”
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“That is correct,” the NYPD officer responded.
Other clips show Proud Boys members piling themselves into a car to escape the situation, while others were still being escorted while surrounded by police pushing back counter-protesters.
According to various sources, the group had attempted to disrupt a drag event earlier in the day but was confronted by a large group of pro-LGBTQ+ counter-protesters.
Police reported that the two groups clashed and pepper spray used to fend off protestors.
After successfully fending off the notorious white supremacists, NYPD officers said they attempted to “deescalate the situation” by escorting them to a subway station in Jackson Heights.
“Due to the urgency and rapidly evolving situation, a determination was made to place the group on the subway and remove them from the area before the situation could escalate further,” a spokesperson said.
After footage of the incident was shared widely on Twitter, various users criticised the actions of both the white supremacist group and the NYPD.
“Why do the Proud Boys get escort police protection and free subway rides??” one user asked.
“Does [Mayor Eric Adams] realise this makes him and [New York] look like absolute trash today,” another wrote. “I hope he knows this is what the whole country thinks.”
In December 2022, Ohio police were seen giving high-fives to Proud Boys after a similar protest against a drag queen story hour event. It was described at the time as an attempt to “defuse a tense situation.”
The Proud Boys grew in notoriety during Donald Trump’s 2016 presidency. The group is responsible for multiple anti-LGBTQ+ and generally bigoted protests.
When asked during the 2020 president debate whether he was willing to condemn white supremacist groups such as the Proud Boys, Donald Trump told the far-right group to “stand back and stand by.”
A researcher later found that, after the statement, Proud Boys memberships on private channels grew by nearly ten per cent.
They were also believed to be a major portion of the crowd that participated in the 2021 US Capitol insurrection on 6 January.
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