MSNBC Anchor says network choosing to use term “protests” and not “riots”

MSNBC anchor Craig Melbin sparked a debate as to whether the chaos taking place in Minneapolis including demonstrations, fires, violence and looting should be considered “protests” or “riots.”

Melvin tweeted:

This will guide our reporting in MN. “While the situation on the ground in Minneapolis is fluid, and there has been violence, it is most accurate at this time to describe what is happening there as “protests”–not riots.”

Many disagreed.

Greg Price replied “You consider this just a protest?” and tweeted a video of a major fire.

One Twitter user countered “Fires aren’t a riot. Riot implies crowds of disruptive people. Not all protesters were destructive and violent, but there were some bad actors. Most videos of the night were small groups.”

Another fired back “This reply hasn’t aged well. The 3rd precinct has been taken over and torched. Police evacuated it.”

Robby Starbuck replied to Melvin:

NBC says that the riots are not riots. Those “protests” must have magically caused spontaneous combustion that lit buildings on fire, threw flatscreen TV’s into the hands of innocent “protestors” and caused hands to slam hammers into cash registers. What a wild series of events!

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Another Twitter user replied to Melvin:

“Protests” don’t involve looting a Target and burning down a Wendy’s. That makes this a “riot.”

Michelle Vinson also disagreed with the network’s decision, tweeting:

Craig. I’m all about protesting. But not breaking in to a Target and everyone destroys everything and steals everything. That’s is NOT a protest. That long with fires and violence = riot!!!!