MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The National Guard is becoming a common sight throughout the Twin Cities. Right now, more than 3,000 soldiers are helping law enforcement respond to the Daunte Wright shooting and the Derek Chauvin trial.
The sight of the reinforcements makes some people feel safe and secure. But for others, it actually makes them feel less safe.
Hark! Cafe owner Katherine Pardue says the National Guard’s imposing presence makes her uneasy.
“I think we often try to normalize these things. It’s not its like looking at the news of a war zone, but its right outside every day,” she said. “It’s very threatening; it makes us feel unsafe.”
Meanwhile, Yoom Nguyen runs the Lotus Cafe in Minneapolis with his family, and says they’re happy to see the guard outside of their restaurant, especially after a few break-ins in the last year.
“It’s amazing. It feels a lot safer out here. These guys are posted up 12 hours a day, keeping an eye on things for us,” he said.
His family brought a warm meal for an entire battalion recently, something they’ve also done for protestors.
A lot of people have stopped to have conversations with the Guard, some thanking them. Others express their frustrations directly with the Guard members.
They are out here coexisting with the public day after day, truly seeing that mixed reaction to their presence in real time.