The Double Standards of Riots | Calvin Robinson
I spent the summer condemning Black Lives Matter activists for their violent riots both at home and in the United States. It is only right that I now take a moment to address the violence that took place in Washington D.C. last week. It doesn’t matter if you’re on the so-called progressive Left or the conservative Right, there should be no reason for political violence in a democratic country.
Protestors who raided the Capitol Building yesterday played directly into the hands of the communists and dictators of the East. Russia and China are laughing at the West, and the state of disarray we find ourselves in. Democracy is being undermined, debate is being shut down, and civil liberties are being eroded. Everything we stand for as liberal democracies is at risk.
Politics has become so polarised that we no longer seem capable of reasoned debate, we argue past each other. Most of the time we’re not even using the same language; if we cannot agree on the meaning of the most basic words, how can we move beyond the fundamentals to solve the problem at hand?
Take racism for example. Traditionally, racism is a word that has been used to mean discrimination or prejudice towards a person based on their ethnicity. Over the past few months, BLM activists and other campaigners on the hard-Left have attempted to redefine the word to mean a power struggle between white oppressors and black victims. While the intention may be genuinely good, it’s misguided and problematic, as it essentially means racism is systemic and one-way. I’m pretty certain the young white girls who were victims of Asian grooming gangs in the Midlands would beg to differ. Anyone can be racist, and anyone can be the victim of racism unless we can agree on that basic fact we cannot move the conversation forward and attempt to solve racial inequalities where they still exist. Nuance is important if we want to make a difference.
Returning to the troubles in America, George Floyd – a known criminal – was celebrated as a hero after he was unjustly killed by police. Whereas Ashli Babbitt, a US Air Force veteran who was shot dead by the police yesterday, is being framed as a violent criminal. The juxtaposition is unpalatable. If a white person gets shot and killed by the police, they deserved it; if a black person suffers the same fate, they’re clearly a hero to be mourned perpetually for their untimely demise, and it’s the fault of an unequal system.
The truth, however, is somewhere in the middle. There are still racial injustices we need to solve, but we cannot do that from an entrenched position of faux moral superiority.
For example, many in the media were quick to condemn the riotous behaviour in D.C – and rightly so – but it’s interesting how quiet they were when BLM were burning down cities and looting neighbourhoods. If the MSM spoke out at all, it was to declare the violent arsenous riots as ‘peaceful protests’. These double standards highlight a hypocrisy that could be considered systemic. If BLM were raiding the Capitol, would the MSM be so quick to condemn? If not, why not? Could it be that there’s racial inequality in our system, but not in the direction many assume…