The city of Cleveland and the state of Ohio have received nearly $50 million in tax dollars to ensure security during the July 18-21 Republican National Convention. More than 3,000 federal agents from the FBI, Secret Service and other agencies have descended on Cleveland to beef up a contingent of 1,500 county law enforcement officers and state troopers. Some 2,500 law officers from as far away as California are coming to bolster the 500-man Cleveland forced dedicated to preserving order at the convention.
 
The Department of Defense is also sending Ohio National Guardsmen, in addition to officers from the U.S. Coast Guard officers, and additional military personnel from U.S. Northern Command. 
The Cleveland Police Department has ordered an additional 2,000 sets of riot armor in advance of the convention. The department has also purchased specialized bicycles for officers to assist in crowd control. Officer have been seen carrying AR-15-style semiautomatic rifles and what resemble M-14 rifles used by the military, which are sometimes used by Army and Marine marksmen.
 
Cleveland police will face off a variety of protest groups. They include the American Freedom Party, Blood & Honour, the Westboro Baptist Church -- a congregation based in Kansas known for offensive rhetoric and signage and their pickets of the funerals of servicemen. Another effort is entitled “Everything She Says Means Everything” and will feature 100 naked women gathered outside the convention site. There will be a busload of Catholic nuns serving lemonade and asking delegates about their fears. 
 
Mayor Frank G. Jackson is expecting that some members of the groups will show disrespect and contempt for officers and that some can be expected to be violent. Police Chief Calvin D. Williams said that police are committed to seeing a safe and successful convention and that officers will exercise restraint, at least initially. 
The families of some dissidents have been contacted already by police, who inquire about the dissidents’ plans. Cleveland is bringing in roughly 2,500 law enforcement officers from as far away as California, Texas and Florida to bolster its own convention-dedicated force of about 500 officers. It is deploying a video unit to document crowd management and police activity.
 
Some news agencies are not taking any chances with the safety of their correspondents. News crews have recently received training from retired special operations military in techniques intended to protect them during raucous and potentially violent protests.
 
Here follows a partial list of the approved protest groups and times for protests:
 
Parade
 
Monday
 
Americafirstmovement.com, 2-3 p.m.
Iraq Veterans Against The War, 3-4 p.m.
Lenore Kalom, 4-5 p.m.
 
Tuesday
 
Conner O'Malley, 9-10 a.m.
Stand Together Against Trump March, 1:30-2:30 p.m.
 
Thursday
 
Great Lakes Region For Johnson Weld, 10-11 a.m.
Lenore Kalom, 12-1 p.m.
Stand Together Against Trump, 1:30-2:30 p.m.
 
Perk Plaza
 
Monday
 
Thomas Moran
Food Not Bombs 
Revolution Books 
The One Campaign 
Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber Foundation 
Silent Monkeys
 
Tuesday
 
Thomas Moran 
Food Not Bombs 
Revolution Books 
The One Campaign
Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber Foundation
Silent Monkeys 
Making Change at Walmart
 
Wednesday
 
Westboro Baptist Church 
Food Not Bombs 
Revolution Books 
The One Campaign
Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber Foundation
Andy Priest, Succession Amendment 
Silent Monkeys 
DML Film
Making Change at Walmart
 
Thursday
 
Revolution Books 
Youngstown Regional Chamber 
Silent Monkeys 
DML Film
Making Change at Walmart
 
Public Square speakers
 
Monday
 
Kathy Coleman, Imperial Women Coalition, 9:30-10 a.m. 
Scott Hurley, 10:15-10:45 a.m.
Al Porter, Black On Black, 11-11:30 p.m.
Rose Hamid, 11:45-12:15 p.m.
Kathy Coleman, Imperial Women Coalition, 12:30-1 p.m.
Lavitta Murray, Million Women March Cleveland/Carl Stokes Brigade, 1:15-1:45 p.m.
Conner O'Malley, 2-2:30 p.m.
Kathy Berta, Lady Parts Justice, 3:30-4 p.m.
Jeff Rusnak, Patriotic Millionaires, 4:15-4:45 p.m.
Bryan Hambley, Stand Together Against Trump March, 5-5:30 p.m.
Jeff Rusnak, Bring Ohio Back, 5:45-6:15 p.m.
 
Tuesday
 
Kathy Berta, Lady Parts Justice, 9:30-10 a.m.
Khalid Samad, Peace In The Hood, 10:15-10:45 a.m.
Jeff Rusnak, Patriotic Millionaires, 11-11:30 a.m.
Jeff Rusnak, Bring Ohio Back, 11:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
Valerie Robinson, 12:30-1 p.m.
Al Porter, Black On Black, 1:15-1:45 p.m.
Spencer Snygg, Silent Monkeys, 2-2:30 p.m.
Rosie Palfy, The Forgotten Veterans, 2:45-3:15 p.m.
Donna Woods, 3:30-4 p.m. 
Don Bryant, Greater Cleveland Immigration Network, 4:15-4:45 p.m.
Shirley Phelps-Roper, Westboro Baptist Church, 5-5:30 p.m.
Gavin Jenkins, 5:45-6:15 p.m.
 
Wednesday
 
Noah Block-Harley, Quiet American Review, 9:30-10 a.m.
Jeff Rusnak, Patriotic Millionaires, 10:15-10:45 a.m.
Toni Rozshaegyi, Code Pink Women For Peace, 11-11:30 a.m.
Don Bryant, Cleveland Peace Action, 11:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
Rev. Pamela Pinkney-Butts, Pinkney Butts USA 2016, 12:30-1 p.m.
Kathy Berta, Lady Parts Justice, 1:15-1:45 p.m.
Jeff Rusnak, Bring Ohio Back, 2-2:30 p.m.
Rosie Palfy, The Forgotten Veterans, 2:45-3:15 p.m.
Spencer Snygg, Silent Monkeys, 3:30-4 p.m.
Eric Putzig, Go West To Japan, 4:15-4:45 p.m.
Greg Coleridge, NE Ohio American Friends Service Committee, 5-5:30 p.m.
Bryan Hambley, Stand Together Against Trump March, 5:45 p.m.-6:15 p.m.
 
Thursday
 
Conner O'Malley, 09:30-10 a.m.
Michael Bozik, 10:15-10:45 a.m.
Kathy Berta, Lady Parts Justice, 11-11:30 a.m.
Paul J. Cristallo, 11:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
Pierre Nappier, 12:30-1 p.m.
Jeff Rusnak, Bring Ohio Back, 1:15-1:45 p.m.
Spencer Snygg, Silent Monkeys, 2-2:30 p.m.
Jose Loayza, Illegals For Trump, 2:45 p.m.-3:15 p.m.
Greg Coleridge, Ne Ohio Friends Service Committee, 3:30-4 p.m.
Frances Mentch, Save The South Euclid-Lyndhurst Mansion Library, 4:15-4:45 p.m.
Jeff Rusnak, Bring Ohio Back, 5-5:30 p.m.
Justin Longwell, 5:45-6:15 p.m.
 
Willard Park
 
Monday
 
Gaye Lub 
LWV Greater Cleveland 
Food Not Bombs of Lake County and East Side Cleveland 
Cleveland Baptist Church 
Andrew Purchin
Revolution Books 
The One Campaign 
Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber Foundation
DML Film
Silent Monkeys
 
Tuesday
 
Food Not Bombs of Lake County and East Side Cleveland 
Cleveland Baptist Church 
Andrew Purchin
Gaye Lub
LWV Greater Cleveland 
Revolution Books 
Silent Monkeys 
Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber Foundation
DML Film
Making Change at Walmart
 
Wednesday
 
Food Not Bombs of Lake County and East Side Cleveland 
Cleveland Baptist Church 
Gaye Lub 
Revolution Books 
LWV Greater Cleveland
Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber Foundation
Andrew Purchin 
Silent Monkeys 
DML Film 
Making Change at Walmart
 
Thursday
 
Food Not Bombs of Lake County and East Side Cleveland 
Cleveland Baptist Church 
Gaye Lub 
Revolution Books 
LWV Greater Cleveland 
Andrew Purchin
Silent Monkeys 
DML Film 
Making Change at Walmart 
People Fight Back Center
March Against Racism 
Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber Foundation
 
 

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Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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