During the hurricane, most of the homes had been deserted. In trying to protect property from looters that were taking advantage of the devastating situation, Lawson was making sure that people from the other side of the bridge went nowhere near the homes, even if they could prove that they in fact lived in the area. Even though Lawson felt that what he was doing was helpful to others, he was still singling out people based on either their race or their economic background, immediately targeting all of them for potential home invasion. It was because of Lawson’s actions that many people were not able to make it back to their homes, but were sent to shelters - if they were lucky. In the case of the Cantwells, the family was simply shunted from the bridge at gunpoint.
Lawson’s actions that day on the bridge caused an uproar, though there were quite a few people that agreed with what Lawson did. While it was his duty to protect the homes of others when they were unable to, he still made it impossible for other people to return to their homes. Furthermore, the way he handled the situation with the Cantwell family was uncalled for; the Cantwells simply wanted to go home, and Cantwell Jr. had been trying to prove that he and his family lived over the bridge. When they were turned away, they were denied entry back into their own home, and they were not given the chance to show that they actually lived there. They were wrongfully treated like common criminals, despite that looting was far from their