- Sai Charan
Why Is America Still Burning?
The level of election-season violence that we are seeing in America now is unprecedented and has not been seen since the street clashes of 1968. On 23rd August 2020, Jacob Blake, an African American, was reportedly shot several times by police officers while they were responding to an alleged domestic incident in Kenosha.
Jacob is accused of criminal trespassing, sexual assault, and disorderly conduct based on statements by his former girlfriend. A video posted online reportedly showed Jacob being shot in the back as he tried to get into his car. The shooting came amid heightened tensions in the US over police brutality following the killing of African American man George Floyd in May this year.
By the evening of 23rd August 2020, a mob descended on the streets and started burning things down. Vehicles, shops, and houses were all set on fire. Protesters tossed gasoline bombs and bricks at the cops. The police responded with tear gas and pepper sprays. This went on for three days.
On 27th August 2020, armed militias were out and patrolled the streets with rifles. They clashed with the protesters. Among the vigilantes was a 17-year-old teen named Kyle Rittenhouse. He shot dead two men in his defense after being kicked by the protesters. What followed was more chaos. Protesters from both sides burned entire buildings to the ground.
The riots then spread to Los Angeles, Washington DC, Denver, and Portland. In Washington DC, the protests have turned entirely political. Democrats have been seen inciting sentiments and fueling unrest. "Let's march on", said Kamala Harris, the Democratic vice-presidential candidate at a virtual election rally. Kamala Harris and her party are conducting their election campaign digitally but they want the protesters to "keep marching".
Donald Trump traveled all the way to Kenosha on Wednesday to defend the police and the 17-year-old shooter. The bottom line is that both Donald Trump and Joe Biden can see that their country is burning, but they have decided to play the narrative that suits them. Donald Trump will not speak a word against the armed militias, and Joe Biden won't speak out against Antifa or BLM violence.