BLM Violence Erupts in Philadelphia
Another black man was killed by police. Is that the only fact that matters?
“The hope is that that doesn’t escalate into anything more than the peaceful protests that I think this kind of situation brings out.” So said Pennsylvania Democrat Governor Tom Wolf before he ended up sending the National Guard to quell riots in Philadelphia over a (seemingly justified) police shooting of a black man. You almost have to wonder if leftists even hear how ridiculous they sound talking about “peaceful protests” while businesses are looted and vandalized, buildings and patrol cars are burned, and police officers are attacked. Violence even spread to Brooklyn and Washington, DC.
Some 30 Philadelphia officers were injured by bricks, rocks, and other things in the Black Lives Matter “peaceful protests” in the City of Brotherly Love this week, including one sergeant who suffered a broken leg when a driver ran over her with his truck as he plowed into several officers.
Ostensibly, this mayhem was all because 27-year-old Walter Wallace Jr., who was black, was killed by police on Monday. Video of the encounter shows Wallace threateningly coming at police with a knife. The white officers backed away while instructing Wallace repeatedly to “put the knife down,” but when he did not comply with instructions, they shot him 14 times. Wallace’s cousin says police were called because Wallace was having an episode related to his bipolar disorder. It was the third police response to Wallace’s house that day.
Even Wallace’s father condemned the violence, saying, “They’re not helping my family. They’re showing disrespect. Stop this violence and chaos. People have businesses. We all got to eat. It’s an SOS to help, not to hurt.”
Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw, the city’s first black female commissioner, says the department will investigate the incident, as it should. And police will also continue arresting rioters and looters, as they should. But will anyone investigate why the city council reduced the Philly PD’s funding by $33 million this summer? Or will the council now vote differently on an upcoming bill to permanently ban nonlethal police tools, such as tear gas and pepper spray? Neither officer in this shooting had a Taser.
Wallace’s death is tragic and we’re hardly alone in wishing this deadly encounter had never happened. But as Philadelphia’s Fraternal Order of Police President John McNesby said, these officers are “being vilified” for “doing their job and keeping the community safe.” He added, “Our thoughts and prayers are with these police officers who had to use lethal force to keep themselves and the community safe. … They too are traumatized.”
Indeed they must be, and this terrible incident will only fuel the trend of officers leaving the job. According to federal data, there are fewer cops in America now than at any point in the last 25 years.