Tearing down statues and other public symbols of “white supremacy? Check. Lobbing rocks or Molotov cocktails at police? Check. Smashing windows and committing acts of arson in the name of Black Lives Matter? Check. Looting? Check.
Add the latest offense — storming restaurants and harassing customers — and the list is complete. (RELATED: Tweet of the Day: #BlackBrunchMatters, hold the bacon)
All of these relics of revenge-mob mentality, supposedly carried out over police shootings of black men, date back to the Obama era. In fact, there was one additional symptom that happily hasn’t carried forward: the wholesale assassination of police officers as they sat in their cars.
If there is one difference between then and now it is the level of depraved indifference exhibited by the mob. As an illustration, rioters in Baltimore in 2015 set fire to a CVS, then punctured a fire hose so the flames could not be extinguished. The structure burned to the ground. Contrast that with the recent actions of “protesters” who set fire to a home with a child inside, then blocked firefighters’ access.
If there is another difference, it is in the reaction of the nation’s Democratic leaders and the media. After two days of rioting following the Michael Brown shooting in 2014, Barack Obama said in a statement, “I know the events of the past few days have prompted strong passions, but … I urge everyone in Ferguson, Missouri, and across the country, to remember this young man through reflection and understanding.” Even race huckster Al Sharpton said, “To become violent in Michael Brown’s name is to betray the gentle giant that he was.”
That characterization belies the facts of the case, but it was infinitely preferable to the position of our political leaders now, who play down the violence at every turn or make fatuous statements like the one Joe Biden made in the wake of the Jacob Blake shooting. The incident wasn’t 24 hours old before the would-be president decided the police were in the wrong and that “equal justice has not been real for Black Americans.”