Protests are “what America is all about. But this is bigger and more volatile” than in the recent past, said David S. Meyer, a professor at the University of California, Irvine and author of “The Politics of Protest: Social Movements in America.” “We’re in a moment where people are frustrated with institutional politics and where people see urgent issues that need addressing and for a moment they believe that taking action can make a difference,” he said.

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