"The first amendment applies to everyone. So if an issue is important to you, then you have every right to voice your concerns about it."
Sgt. Robert Pair with the Bakersfield Police Department is encouraging those who want to make their voices heard to be lawful and get their message across safely.”
23ABC checked in with two local groups who did just that in the earlier hours on Monday night. Kyle Benson was one of many BLM supporters gathered on the corner of Panama and Colony hoping everyone takes this election seriously. He said, "Our voices will not be suppressed. Because in order for change to happen... We have to be the change." Benson adds, "since the civil war we’ve been handed the baton, and its our time to do something with the baton. To get back in the race, because eventually were going to have to pass the baton to our kids as well.”
And off of Rosedale, a separate group gathered in support of President Trump. Jon-Michel Morris, says he hopes everyone stays peaceful and uses their best judgment. He says, "Seeing all the American flags is pretty awesome. I haven’t really seen anything like this since I was born. So seeing all the support, people come together, all races & ethnicities, just showing their love for America. " Morris adds,"The way things have been going I think its important to stand with your side. And no matter what happens tomorrow, I hope everyone keeps it civil. Life goes on no matter what. "
Sgt. Pair saying BPD is preparing ahead of the elections & they will only get involved if criminal activity happens. He says, "We are cognizant of the issues facing this election. We have increased staffing, which will allow us to respond to any issues that arise."