Rahul Dubey let nearly 70 strangers trapped by police into his home and allowed them to stay the night to avoid arrest.
A Washington, D.C., man who is being praised for opening his home to protesters so they could escape arrest thinks the people he helped are the real heroes.
“I hope that my 13-year-old son grows up to be just as amazing as they are,” Rahul Dubey, 44, told ABC news channel WJLA Tuesday after nearly 70 protesters left his home as the city’s curfew lifted at 6 a.m.
Protesters were demonstrating Monday evening against the killing of George Floyd, a Black man who died last week after a white police officer knelt on his neck, when police corralled them to a street and blocked them in several hours after the city’s 7 p.m. curfew.
After a 15-minute standoff, the police surged forward, pushing protesters with their shields and spraying gas, according to The Washington Post.
“It was a human tsunami,” Dubey told the paper. “I was hanging on my railing yelling, ‘Get in the house! Get in the house!’”
He opened his door, and protesters raced in. He gave them milk to wash out their eyes, and let them spend the night — despite police attempting several times to coax the group outside to be arrested, according to protesters who spoke to local D.C. news station WUSA9.
Dubey can also be heard saying in a video posted widely to Twitter that police “shot tear gas through the window” of his home. He also said that police “put me up against a wall” for about 15 seconds when he tried to get to his home earlier that evening.
“How were you able to get home if they were holding you?” a protester recording the video asks him.
“Because I’m not Black,” he responds.
“I know most people would’ve flung open that door,” he told WUSA9.
He added to the news channel that he feels the nation is “lost” and “very fragile,” and he decided to help because no one is “doing anything about it, except for these people.”
He continued by describing what the protesters were doing while staying in his home:
“[The protesters] lead with love, and when you lead with love, the country is exactly like this — where we’re diverse and we’re united,” he said. “They were in there in groups, being pragmatic, they were problem-solving, they were sharing their fears, they were frightened, they were consoling each other. That’s the America I know. And if my leaders could actually reproduce what took place in that house in unity, we’re going to be a much better country.”
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