You know, in our society today, getting along with other cultures and nationalities seem to be more of a challenge in some cases, but in other cases you see unlikely allies. Seeing cultures, and other societies, getting along with each other in a peaceful fashion and coexistence, it can sometimes bring you hope and possibility of things working out in the future. However, on the flip side of that cultural coin, some society divisions can’t and will not get along no matter what is proposed or what solution is warranted for them. In these situations in order to get those cultures to coexist with each other sometimes is to have some sweet deal or some mutual understanding that would not affect them in a negative light. As we see with negotiations between countries and social-intellectuals, where forcing an agreement can be a long and very lengthy process.
Well, this day actually showed why some African nations, and clans, don’t coexist and why that continent is always having some kind of turmoil. When all hell broke loose inside the Marriott Hotel, most of us were working an overtime assignment; Maryland Terrapins football game. I can’t say that I was happy I wasn’t on regular duty, patrol, because with this huge ass mess that happened no one was safe from being called in to assist other officers. What I do know is that I was working the overtime assignment when a call or alert tone came out that made everyone’s heart skip one or two beats. Our day began with a normal briefing of the football game and who Maryland was playing, however, I don’t recall anyone mentioning some African sponsored event during our briefing either. I can only say African because I certainly don’t remember the clans that were fighting each other, but I do know they were from somewhere on the African continent. My overtime assignment was somewhere not too far from the Marriott because I was one of the first officers, not on patrol, to respond and arrive on scene.
After this immediate assistance to our officers was called out over the radio, I either got the authorization or just took it upon myself to leave my post and go to assist my fellow officers. Sometimes when shit hits the fan you don’t have time to follow the protocol, chain of command or ask for permission to do things. Especially when your fellow officers are in dying need of your help. What made this call for assistance even more immediate was that the officers working on the overtime event and patrol officers are on two different radio channels. So that would mean that the dispatcher had to relay this information of a mass fight at the Marriott over several different channels, which could be done at one time with one button. As I am screaming, meaning the speed of my cruiser, towards the Marriott Hotel on campus, UMUC, the incoming traffic for the football game is still coming. At the same time we have kids playing around with footballs, and doing other activities through the parking lots and crossing the street.
Now, I am probably less than a minute away from the hotel, and I am approaching one of the traffic circles. Cars and trucks are moving out of my way, barely, and traffic in and around the circle is still there. Finally, just before I enter the traffic circle vehicles started to find ways to get out of the way to only allow me to loudly screech tires around the circle. I remember one lady’s face as I came around the circle with the cruiser leaning hard to the right, and tires skipping and sending ear piercing screeches. Her face was like the sound of the tires were hurting her ears as she sat in her vehicle ready to proceed through the circle after I left. In the short distance left to the hotel, I must’ve topped at about 80mph before screeching one more time around the corner through one of the hotel entrances. Once I finally got there, and ran into through the hotel doors with other officers, everything was quite. I was expecting all kinds of loudness and people running around the lobby area, but little did I know the actual area of problems was inside the auditorium.
After the doors of the auditorium opened up, it was like the sound inside the room just exploded outside. The only thing I could remember was that the room was full of smoke, some people with partial clothing torn off, covered in eggs and rubbing their eyes and coughing. Little did we all know, who are just arriving, that pepper spray was used, eggs were being thrown from both sides and that it was more of a political event. For a while I had no idea what was going on and who was who, except that we had the duty now to kick every one of them out of the hotel immediately. Trying to get them out of the hotel, which I found out it was two different groups that hate each other, was the one of the hardest part. Hotel staff had to tell both groups that they are no longer welcome there anymore and were banned from ever attending the hotel in the future. Apparently, some of the attendees were arrested and transported to the regional jail, while others were forced out and put on their respective buses.
The whole situation probably took about more than an hour to settle, and probably several more minutes to get them to leave the hotel grounds. As far as I know not much damage was caused in the auditorium, but enough for it to be shut down for a few days. Later on, I found out that the two groups that were fighting each other, are also fighting each other over in their home country and the hatred or dislike toward each other is just as strong if not stronger. The last thing we needed was other cultures and groups bringing their fight and anger toward each other from one country to ours. I can’t say we are much better at that either, but I think you get my drift on that statement. HOT FRIED MESS!