It is too early to know what is actually happening inside the protests and riots happening in cities across the country after the murder of George Floyd by police officer Derek Chauvin. We know there are protests and looting and violence, but who is doing what remains unclear, and will stay unclear for a while.
Attorney General Barr gave a premature press conference in which he speculated that “outside radicals and agitators are exploiting the situation to pursue their own separate and violent agenda.” He said, “in many places, it appears the violence is planned, organized and driven by anarchic and left extremist groups, far-left extremist groups, using antifa-like tactics, many of whom travel from outside the state to promote the violence.” There is currently no evidence that what Barr said is true. In fact, evidence including arrest records indicate much of the violence originates with white supremacists.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey added: “We are now confronting white supremacists, members of organized crime, out-of-state instigators, and possibly even foreign actors to destroy and destabilize our city and our region.”
Speaking on a conference call, Trump began a conversation with state governors with an extended, angry diatribe.
“You have to dominate,” he told them. “If you don’t dominate, you’re wasting your time — they’re going to run over you, you’re going to look like a bunch of jerks.”
Trump, who has not addressed the nation since the protests began, said he was putting Gen. Mark A. Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, “in charge,” but did not immediately specify what that meant.
Joe Biden looked Presidential by issuing a unifying message:
“Protesting such brutality is right and necessary. It’s an utterly American response. But burning down communities and needless destruction is not. Violence that endangers lives is not. Violence that guts and shutters businesses that serve the community is not. The act of protesting should never be allowed to overshadow the reason we protest. It should not drive people away from the just cause that protest is meant to advance.”