Protest camps are legitimate forms of political expression that go back hundreds of years. The fact that people in Boise don’t grasp the historic context and present political demands of the protest downtown seems to be a result of the Idaho education system’s total erasure of populist and labor movements from curriculum and local media’s steadfast refusal to investigate and report on anything other than police press releases. Do a google news search for “protest camp,” there are dozens of them going on around the nation and the world right now. Most in the US are related to housing, in places with more robust democracies protest camps might spring up to address environmental issues, labor rights, student rights, etc..
Honestly it scares the fuck out of me to see how hostile the average, “liberal” Boisean is towards this protest. When I see how people would treat the least among them I have to presume I’m seeing what they’d do to me or anyone else if they felt “justified.” Covid really showed me how boiled peoples brains are, what happens when we throw in another variant wave, a grain shortage, a gas price spike, and gosh it’s been a minute since it rained, hasn’t it? “Send in the state police” isn’t a solution to any of these potential crises, but it seems to be the only bi-partisan response our poor atrophied political imaginations can call on.