...to few men ruin, but to all men fear."
It almost seemed like it wasn't going to happen, until it did. Calgary police have finally laid charges in the July 18th attack on pro-Israeli counter-protesters at an anti-Israel rally. I won't repeat their names here. They deserve the shame, but their names will be repeated often enough in other media over the coming days and weeks.
This story isn't really about them. It's about the people who wouldn't take "no" for an answer. Rallied by Ezra Levant, concerned Canadians for the first time stepped outside of the system and began to actively pursue justice where the Calgary Police had clearly chosen not to -- by turning to their fellow citizens for assistance. They combined the old style of justice -- offering a $500 "bounty" for information leading to the identification of six rioters -- with new online methods.
What followed was like a thunderbolt.
Within an hour Riotstoppers had begun to receive tips. Within 14 hours, four of the suspects -- those now charged by Calgary police -- were positively identified.
It was a job well done. But where Riotstoppers excelled was not in how they stepped outside the official system, but in how they respected it in principle: instead of publicly releasing the names of these thugs, so as to put them at risk of vigilante reprisals, they instead withheld that information from the general public and gave that information to the police.
What the Calgary Police -- ostensibly professionals, employing professional investigators -- failed to do in three weeks, Riotstoppers did in just over half of a single day.
It doesn't speak especially positively to how seriously the Calgary Police took these crimes. For whatever reason is truly only known to them.
But now, thanks to Ezra Levant and Riotstoppers, the wheels of justice are finally turning in Calgary. And when ordinary citizens finally got fed up of the seeming tolerance of lawlessness, justice like lightning appeared.