BLM protest vs. Capitol riot: Comparing police response

January 14, 2021 ☼ blmpolicejan6domestic-terrorism

Source: The Washington Post - Link

On Jan. 6, several hundred supporters of President Trump charged inside the Capitol to overturn an election the president had repeatedly and falsely claimed was stolen. They were mostly White, and they roamed freely through the halls, taking selfies and stealing souvenirs, smashing doors and defacing statues, amid sporadic calls to “Hang Mike Pence!” Many shoved and beat officers, one of whom later died.

On June 1, 2020, a crowd of similar size gathered outside the White House to protest after the police killing of George Floyd. They were a diverse group who called for an end to police brutality and racial inequity, and an army of federal agents, assembled after Trump demanded a show of domination, sent them running with chemical agents and rubber bullets.

These two demonstrations, at the most prominent symbols of democracy in the nation’s capital, will define Trump’s legacy, highlighting the divisions he has stoked and the disparate treatment of Black and White people in America by law enforcement.

President-elect Joe Biden said that if the rioters had been a group of Black Lives Matter protesters, they would have been treated “very differently than the mob of thugs that stormed the Capitol.”

“We all know that is true,” he said the next day. “And it is totally unacceptable.”

The difference in response is stark. However, the Capitol Police were set up. They were told not to prepare. National Guard was told to stand down. So the lack of response is not entirely due to the police themselves. It is due to the deliberate shackling of their response to white, well-armed, organized terrorists.