So I just finished skimming the US Air Force document on handling civil unrest, which outlines things like tactics for all levels of protest. The cool paragraph tells the story of how the planners of a protest decided to use women, children and the elderly as the body of the protest and called in media, expecting to get great coverage of riot cops busting putatively innocent heads. Instead, the Air Force sent in uniformed female officers who were unarmed.
But the other thing is that I read all of the tactics and came to understand how three months of training could turn any reasonably fit man into a riot cop. And starting with the 36 inch riot baton, a helmet and a sheild, much could be done to suppress random violence. Random violence is what you can expect from a mob - anything more would be dealing with terrorists, which is what I would be by certain definitions, aware as I now am about US Air Force riot control tactics. Fortunately I'd much rather drive a convertible hot rod than go to anarchy school.
On the smarter end of the engagement, I thought how exactly I might go about diffusing the pretense of civil protest, and while it runs quite afoul of the typical tactics and one strategic rule of riot control, I can't resist its possibility.
Imagine that first thing in the morning of Day Two of the purported riots. You, as The Man, erect the following: In a large town square close to where things are burning and bricks are being thrown, you setup just that kind of unarmed female circular cordon. In the middle of that cordon, you have bright lights and cameras going 24/7 focusing on a dais setup in the middle. On the dais are a dozen judges, also preferably female and elderly hearing complaints from the crowd. If you have a complaint, then you must come in front of the lights and speak in public inside the cordon. Protesters are then realtimed into the permanent record.
How long could violent protesters garner any amount of sympathy from the public if such a dais were maintained?