“The torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans,” President John F. Kennedy said at his inaugural in 1961. Today, this generation is passing that torch to invite a new generation of barbarians to burn and loot and pillage, not serve and protect.
The modern urban mayor is epitomized by Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, who has chosen not to crack down on the barbarians torching his city, but encourages them to keep the flames hot because “The symbolism of a building cannot outweigh the importance of life.” That laughable, sophomoric statement isn’t going to save anyone or any structure.
That building is not a “symbol.” It has value to the person who owns it. And that’s the problem with Frey and the generation of snowflakes who are moving into positions of power and responsibility. Quite simply, they don’t believe in private property. In fact, they see private property as a genuine evil. So, of course, it doesn’t matter if you burn it. It’s not worth protecting.
We saw this same attitude in Baltimore in 2015 when Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake expressed the notion that protesters should be given space to destroy.
“I made it very clear that I work with the police and instructed them to do everything that they could to make sure that the protesters were able to exercise their right to free speech,” Rawlings-Blake said. “It’s a very delicate balancing act. Because while we try to make sure that they were protected from the cars and other things that were going on, we also gave those who wished to destroy space to do that as well. And we worked very hard to keep that balance and to put ourselves in the best position to de-escalate.”
Rawlings-Blake put the rioters in the driver seat with predictable results. The riots over the death of a black man who died in the back of a police van cost small businesses $9 million and the city was out $20 million.
The damage in Minneapolis-St. Paul far exceeds what happened in Baltimore in 2015.
The crime spree spread from Minneapolis to St. Paul and points elsewhere. More than 170 St. Paul businesses have been looted or damaged while dozens of fires have been set. St. Paul had nothing to do with the death of George Floyd. It is nothing more than a target of criminal opportunity.
Suburban malls fear they might be next. Civic order has broken down with astonishing speed. Mob rule has descended. The forces of order have withdrawn.
Meanwhile, seven people were shot during a demonstration in Louisville, “protesting” Floyd’s death and the death of an unarmed black woman shot in her apartment.
Seven people were shot downtown, the mayor said in a video message on Twitter. Property damage also was reported after peaceful demonstrations took a turn, Louisville Metro Police Department officials said during a news conference.
The protests turned violent as fury in Minneapolis over the death this week of an unarmed black man in police custody also took a dangerous turn, with marchers setting a police precinct on fire. Large crowds gathered in both places, even as experts warned people to continue to avoid big gatherings to stall the spread of the coronavirus.
“Understandably, emotions are high,” Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said on Facebook. “As Breonna’s mother says, let’s be peaceful as we work toward truth and justice,”
The protesters say they want “justice.” The rioters? Well, they just want to watch the world burn. You can’t have “justice” or freedom without order. Even the dead racist, anti-feminist white men who wrote the Constitution knew that. But the lesson has apparently escaped this generation of political leaders whose timidity in the face of violence and anarchy would be astonishing if it wasn’t expected.
When the pagan tribes, known to the Romans as “barbarians,” were at the gates of the city, the public didn’t demand the praetorians give the Vandals “space” to destroy. They wanted to be protected. They weren’t interested in the virtue-signaling of politicians. They wanted to be protected.
But to Rawlings-Blake, Frey, and this new snowflake generation of politicians raised not to offend but to take offense, and to fear everything, the idea of “protecting” against the anti-social thugs who are destroying civic order and their city never materializes.