Biblical and Constitutional Politics

Protests Turned Riots
(Lockdown Frustration, Domestic Terrorism, and Lack of Respect)
Part Two

By Gary F. Zeolla

 

This two-part article is continued from: Protests Turned Riots (Lockdown Frustration, Domestic Terrorism, and Lack of Respect) - Part One.

 

SCOTUS Church Ruling

 

      In the midst of this crisis, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) came down with a scary ruling. A church challenged a California order that churches could reopen, but they must operate at 25% capacity or less than 100 congregants, whichever is fewer. Meanwhile, big box stores and other businesses could operate at 50% capacity, without limits on the total number of customers.

      The church challenged the law as being discriminatory against churches and as going against the First Amendment guarantee of freedom of religion. But SCOTUS ruled 5-4 to uphold the California order. Consequently, we now have the specter of law-abiding, God-fearing people not being allowed to gather in groups of over 100, even though they would be practicing social distancing and wearing masks. Meanwhile, there are thousands of people gathering in protests, none of them practicing social distancing and some not wearing masks. But that is somehow okay.

      It makes me feel foolish for abiding by all of the CV rules. I’ve been mostly staying at home, while socially distancing and wearing a mask on the rare occasions I do go out. Many other law-abiding citizens have been doing the same. But then these protestors and rioters throw all caution to the wind, with little chastisement from the media for doing so. But I fear we will see a resurgence in CV cases and deaths due to these protests and riots. That could then lead to more lockdowns, and we will be one more step closer to a police state.

     

Space X and the President’s Speech

 

      Another event happened that was also little reported in the media while all of this rioting was going on. A space launch occurred from US soil for the first time in almost a decade.

      A Space X rocket was launched from Cape Canaveral on Saturday afternoon at 3:22 pm (5/30/20). But only FNC covered it. The space module then docked with the International Space Station (ISS) the next day. Both were incredible feats of American ingenuity. All of the parts of the Space X rocket are reusable. It was incredible watching the rocket blast off, then seeing the booster separate and return to earth. Then the space module catching up with and docking with the ISS, with both of them traveling 70,000 miles per hour, was an incredible feat of physics and mathematics.

      That display of American excellence should have led to chants of “USA! USA! USA” across the land, and it should have been a great unifying event. But sadly, most of the media was too focused on the protests and riots to even report about it, which further lead to the tearing apart of the USA.

      It should also be noted, a couple of hours after the launch, the President gave speech at the Kennedy Space Center. Along with talking about the great event that had just occurred, the addressed the current crisis. He said he had expressed his condolences to the family of George. He condemned the actions of the police officers, saying the AG and DOJ were already investigating the case. He expressed support for the peaceful protestors, but he also soundly condemned the violence and said he was determined to to put an end to it.

      As with the launch, only FNC covered this speech. Afterwards, a black pundit on FNC said it was the best speech the President had ever given. He said the President struck just the right tone.

      Later that day on CNN, after not airing the President’s speech, their pundits condemned the President for not addressing the current crisis, for not offering condolences to the family of George, for not condemning the actions of the police officers, for not offering support for the peaceful protestors, and for not soundly condemned the violence. I’m serious! The very points Trump addressed in his speech, just hours later, they were saying he never said. I’ve seen such deception before on the part of CNN, along with on MSNBC. But this was just so blatant it was hard to miss.

    See the References for the video and transcript of Trump’s speech.

 

Presumption of Innocence

 

      That point about tearing the USA apart takes me back to my Tearing Apart book. A good portion of that book covers the Justice Brett Kavanaugh confirmation proceedings. Throughout them and elsewhere in the book, I bemoan the loss of the concept of presumption of innocence. And we are seeing that once again.

      Most everyone commenting on and protesting about the death of George Floyd are assuming the police officers are all guilty. They were even fired almost immediately after the incident, before any investigation had taken place.

      Now, let me be clear, the videos are disturbing. And I can understand that many cannot conceive of there being any defense for the actions displayed. But again, we do not know all that happened. Also, the coroner’s report found that George did not die from strangulation but due to preexisting coronary heart disease. I am sure that will be part of Derek’s defense. But I doubt that will be enough. And there is little defense for the inaction on the part of the other three officers. Later, the family of George had their own coroner do an autopsy. He found that George died of asphyxiation. That will buttress the case against Derek.

      But still, the cops deserve their day in court. And under our judicial system, they are innocent until proven guilty. But a loss of that basic concept has led to these riots and protests. Derek has been arrested, and I am sure the other three will soon be as well. If people better understood that simple concept of the presumption of innocence, then all of these protests and riots would be unnecessary. Just wait, and let the courts handle it.

      But sadly, many are not willing to do that. They think they must act now, before all of the evidence is in, and both sides have been heard. Again, I discuss this point length in my book. And the loss of that concept of innocent until proven guilty is one of the worse declines in our country that I have seen in the past few years.

 

Back to Lockdowns

 

      George Floyd was an ex-con, having served five years in prison for armed robbery, who fathered three children out of wedlock. But I have heard it reported in several any news outlets that some time ago, George had become a Christian. As a result, God turned his life around, and he was engaged to be married. Many good things have been said about his character and activities in support of his community. How then does that square with him passing a counterfeit $20 bill, being drug intoxicated, and possibly resisting arrest?

      Remember I said he had lost his job as a bouncer due to the CV lockdowns. That could have led to financial problems, leading to him feeling desperate and using that phony $20 bill to buy food. In addition, many reformed drug abusers have fallen off the wagon as a result of losing their jobs due to the CV lockdowns. It is possible the same happened to George. If that is the case, then this whole mess can be attributed to those draconian measures used in response to the CV.

      I have been warning about possible “collateral damage” from the lockdowns since the day they began to be instituted. It is possible George’s death and all of the death, suffering, and destruction that has occurred since then could all have been avoided, if such measures were never instituted.

 

Arrests and Underlying Causes

 

      On Monday morning (6/1/20), KDKA-TV (CBS affiliate) reported that 44 people had been arrested here in Pittsburgh and 4,100 nationwide over the weekend, with more arrests forthcoming. The Pittsburgh police released a list of the names, ages, and hometowns of all of those arrested. They were almost all in their 20s-30s. 16 were from Pittsburgh, while the rest were from surrounding communities. But three refused to give their personal details, so they were each listed as “John Doe.”

      That same morning, Pittsburgh police were looking for a 20-year old male from Shaler (a town just outside of Pittsburgh). He is said to have started the riot by breaking in the windows of the police cruiser that was then torched. The released picture showed him in a black hoodie with a black bandana with a large “A” over his face, the garb of Antifa.

      I later learned that symbol was not for Antifa but for the Animal Liberation Front. But it was reported that group was also considered to be a radical group by the FBI. Then just before 6:00 pm Monday, this young hoodlum turned himself into the police, but not before having his hair cut.

      It is good that those responsible for the riots are being arrested. But such should never have happened in the first place.

      The line we are being fed is that racism underlined the actions of the police officers in Minneapolis, and the protests and riots are a reaction to that and more systematic racism across the country. But more likely, it was not racism but domestic terrorism and the unnecessary draconian lockdowns that we have been subject to over the past several weeks that fueled this situation. Underlying all of that is a lack of respect for authority and the property of others.

      Domestic terror groups like Antifa need to be dealt with, and this whole mess is yet one more reason those lockdowns should never have happened, and why I warned so strongly against them from the start. And we need to return to a society in which a respect for authority and the property of others is ingrained in our citizenry, and that begins in the home.

 

Lack of Respect

 

      To elaborate on the previous section, there is not systemic racism in the United States. There has not been a wave of cops killing blacks in the United States. I know the media and civil rights group try to make things look that way. But it simply is not true.

      What we have had over the last few years are a few isolated cases of a white police officer killing a black man. In most of those cases, the killing was justified, as I have detailed in my various writings. As White House national security adviser Robert O’Brien put it on CNN on Sunday (6/1/20):

 

      “No, I don’t think there’s systemic racism,” O’Brien answered. “I think 99.9% of our law enforcement officers are great Americans and many of them are African-American, Hispanic, Asian. They’re working the toughest neighborhoods, they’ve got the hardest jobs to do in this country, and I think they’re amazing, great Americans, and they’re my heroes, but you know what, there are some bad apples in there” (Mediaite).

 

    See the References under "Systemic Racism and Killings by Cops in General" for further support of the preceding statements. But here, I would agree that the killing does not look justified. But that is why the perpetrator has already been charged, and more charges are probably forthcoming against the other officers involved. But even in this case, it has not been established that race had anything to do with it.

      At the root of each of these cases is a lack of respect for authority. In each case, if the accused had simply submitted to the police, none of the following events would have happened. But many blacks and others in this country have not been raised with a respect for authority. A lack of respect for authority, along with a lack of respect for private property, then underlies the riots, with the looting, torching of vehicles and buildings, and even graffiti.

      It is true that situations like the killing of George feed into that lack of respect for authority. The CV lockdowns and ridiculous arrests of hair salon and gyms owners and of pastors for defying those orders have also fed into the lack of respect for authority.

      Even worse is the lack of respect for human life and dignity shown by the rioters. Tucker Carlson, on his 8:00 pm FNC show on Monday, showed video after video of shop owners trying to protect their businesses from the thugs. But each time, they were beaten to the ground and pummeled by a rioting mob. Each one of these videos were as disturbing to watch as the George Floyd video. Tucker said he had many more he could show, but some of them were too graphic to air on TV. He said some of those who were so beaten had died, and others sustained lifelong injuries.

      But none of these videos have gone viral like the George Floyd video. In fact, I had barely even heard of such attacks occurring anywhere in the media prior to Tucker’s show. I guess they do not fit the narrative of the rioters being oppressed people that the mainstream media is trying to push. Though in one video I saw elsewhere, a shop owner was trying to defend his business and himself with a machete, but he was quickly overrun and pummeled by the mob. But if he and these other shop owners had been armed with AK47s, the results could have been much different.

      For those of you who think the Second Amendment shouldn’t protect the right of people to own such weapons, do you think a puny handgun would deter such a mob? I doubt it. But an AK?47 would do the trick. Such weapons are necessary for self-protection when the police are told to stand down. In fact, in Philadelphia, there was a case of defensive gun use. At 4:00 am Tuesday morning, an armed shop owner confronted four looters in his business. He shot and killed one and shot and injured another. The Philly police chief has already said publicly, “If there ever was a justified shooting, this was it” (NBC Radio News).

      But such weapons and defensive gun use would not be necessary if these rioters had a respect for authority, property rights, and human life. Such respect begins in the home. But when children are not raised with such respect, they grow up into angry adults. Feeding the lack of teaching of such is absentee fathers. I discuss this latter point at length in my book God’s Sex Plan: Volume Two, so I will not pursue it here. Suffice it to say, the leftist idea that fathers are optional is far from the truth. I document in that book that most mass shooters were raised without fathers. And I would bet the same would be true of most of these rioters.

 

Tuesday Morning Update

 

      When I went to bed Monday night, the last I had heard was on the 6:00 news that all was calm in Pittsburgh. But when I got up Tuesday morning (6/2/20), I found out that the peaceful protest I mentioned about previously had turned violent. It had begun at 3:30 pm, and until 7:00 pm it had remained peaceful. That was the last update I heard that night. But the next morning I learned that after that time, the protestors had begun to disperse.

      However, a few stragglers began pelting the police with rocks, bottles, and bricks. The police were not yet dressed in riot gear, so that had to change into their tactical gear and call in SWAT. That was a major mistake on our mayor’s part. They should have been prepared for violence from the start. But as it was, several additional businesses were vandalized, and nine police officers were injured. Twenty additional rioters were arrested.

      Sadly, similar scenes played out across the country. Very obviously, the President’s message to the mayors and governors to “dominate the streets” did not happen. Several officers were shot, with one in critical condition, hundreds more businesses were torched and looted, and hundreds more were arrested. It is truly a horrifying scene occurring across the country.

 

The Good

 

      I would be amiss if I did not mention there was some good behavior in the midst of this very bad behavior. Here in Pittsburgh, Sunday morning, after all of the vandalism Saturday night, while the business owners were cleaning up the mess inside and outside of their stores, many Pittsburghers and others from outside the city volunteered to help them in the clean ups.

      A local police chief joined arm in arm with protesters marching in an outlying town. There were cops in some places kneeling with the protestors. And there were cases of protestors thanking the police for their service. In one town, protestors gave a case of bottled water to the cops standing by with nothing to do, since they were all peaceful. Prayer vigils were held in several local churches.

      The same occurred in many cities across the country.

      But I must say, I think those who were arrested should be the ones who clean up the mess they created. Give them toothbrushes and make them scrub off the graffiti by hand.

 

Conspiracy?

 

      I reported elsewhere that many conservatives believe the lockdowns are all a conspiracy to tank the economy, just so that President Trump will not be reelected. Now, some conservatives believe Antifa and other such groups are being paid by leftist billionaire George Soros to cause chaos for the same reason.

      I have no evidence for either claim. Except, it does tend to be true that the lockdowns have been more severe and long-lasting in blue states and localities than in red areas, and the riots seemed to be allowed to occur unchecked more so in blue cities than in red cities. But that is just an observation. I don’t have actual data to back it up.

      But if my observation is correct, I don’t think it is a “conspiracy” on the part of Democrat mayors and governors to prevent Trump from being reelected. I guess I just find it hard to believe Dem politicians could hate Trump so much that they would risk the lives and livelihood of the very citizens they were elected to serve to get Trump out of office.

      I think a better explanation if this observation is true is it is due to simple incompetence on the part of the Dem mayors and governors. I know that is the case here in Pittsburgh ad across PA. Our Democrat Mayor Peduto and Democrat Governor Wolf have been very incompetent in their handling of the CV crisis, as I have detailed elsewhere. Their handling of the protests turned violent here in Pittsburgh, and in the case of Gov. Wolf, in Philadelphia has been atrocious. That is why the shop owner in Philly had to takes things into his own hands and defend his own business.

 

Conclusion/ Judgment of God

 

      My heart breaks for America. Over 100,000 dead from the CV, with many more to come, especially with more outbreaks sure to follow due to these protests and riots.

      50 million Americans have lost their jobs due to the CV lockdowns. The number jumped from 41 to 50 million when eight million formerly self-employed were added to the lost jobs numbers (Jill Schlesinger on KDKA Radio, 6/1/20).

      Now, we have the apparently unjustified killing of George Floyd, leading to more racial unrest in the country. The protests are fine, and I fully support people’s right to peacefully protest, even though I think they are a bit misguided.  But when they turn violent, and businesses are looted and torched, that adds to the economic hardships we have already been experiencing.

      Then there are the beatings and even murders of shop owners trying to protect their businesses, and at least one cop was killed (in Oakland, CA), with many more injured, as have been several news reporters.

      All of this is leading to even a greater tearing apart of the USA. That was the theme of the book I wrote two years ago, and it is even more true now than when I wrote it. It is all just too much to bear.

      All I can do now is cry out to God for relief. But sadly, many in our country no longer believe in God, which probably underlies this entire mess. I doubt any of the rioters believe in God.

 

            28And just as they did not think it was worthwhile to be having [or, keeping] God in [their] true knowledge [or, consciousness], God gave them over to a disapproved [fig. debased] mind to be doing the [things] not proper, 29having been filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetous desire [or, greed], malice; full of envy, murder, bitter conflict, deceit [or, treachery], maliciousness; gossips, 30back-biters, God-haters, insolent persons, arrogant boasters, schemers of evil [things]; disobedient to parents, 31senseless, untrustworthy, without natural affection, unforgiving, unmerciful; 32who having known the regulation [or just judgment] of God, that the ones practicing such things are deserving of death, not only are doing them, but they are also approving of the ones practicing [them] (Romans 1.:28-32).

 

      I have resisted calling the Coronavirus pandemic a judgment of God on our nation. But now, with this wave of riots across the country, it could very well be that God is judging our country with plague and violence and the resultant economic downturn for our having forsaken Him and His commandments. All we can do now is cry out in repentance and seek Him and His forgiveness. At least, that is what I hope and pray is the outcome of all we are going through.

 

       13If I should restrain the heaven, and there should be no rain, and if I should command the devouring locust to devour the tree[s], and if I should send death [fig., pestilence] on My people; 14then if My people, on whom My name has been called upon them, should be ashamed [fig., repent] and should pray and seek My face and turn from their evil ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will be merciful to their sins, and I will heal their land (2Chronicles 7:13-14).


 Tearing the USA Apart
From Kavanaugh, to Incivility, to Caravans, to Violence, to the 2018 Midterm Elections, and Beyond
 


References:

      Scripture taken from: Analytical-Literal Translation of the New Testament: Third Edition. Copyright 1999-2020 Gary F. Zeolla (http://www.Zeolla.org).

 

      Scripture taken from the Analytical-Literal Translation of the Old New Testament: Volume II: The Historical Books. Copyright 2013-2020 by Gary F. Zeolla (www.Zeolla.org).

 

Videos:

      ABC News. New video appears to show moments before George Floyd was pinned to ground.

      NBC News. George Floyd arrest video shows another angle with multiple officers.

      NBC News. New Security Video Shows Events Leading Up To George Floyd’s Arrest.

      YouTube. Unedited video of George Floyd’s death.

 

Details on George Floyd and His Death:

      CBS Minnesota. ‘A Beautiful Spirit:’ George Floyd Made New Life in Minn., But Lost Job Due To Pandemic.

      Christianity Today. George Floyd Left a Gospel Legacy in Houston.

      Grio. George Floyd and officer Derek Chauvin worked together at nightclub in 2019.

      NBC News. George Floyd’s death ruled a homicide by medical examiner.

      New York Post. First responders tried to save George Floyd’s life for almost an hour.

      New York Times. What We Know About the Death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

 

National News on Protests and Rioting:

      ABC News. Trump, Barr tell governors to ‘dominate’ streets in response to unrest.

      CNN. Cities extend curfews for another night in an attempt to avoid violent protests over George Floyd's death.

      CNN. Trump threatens military force if violence in states isn't stopped.

      Fox News. Dueling claims: Trump blames Antifa for riots, Minnesota officials point fingers at white supremacists and cartels.

      Fox News. George Floyd death: The cities where people are protesting and rioting.

      Fox News. George Floyd unrest: Cities face new looting amid stronger National Guard response, curfews.

      Fox News. Rioting across the nation leaves cities reeling as hundreds arrested, National Guard called in, businesses damaged and at least 3 dead.

      Fox News. Small business owners fear worst after rioting, looting destroy storefronts during pandemic.

 

The President at Kennedy Space Center and St. John's Church:

      ABC News. Police use munitions to forcibly push back peaceful protesters for Trump church visit.

      Fox News. Park Police defends actions clearing protesters near White House, says ‘no tear gas was used.’

      Fox News. Trump vows to mobilize federal resources in address to nation, makes surprise trip to church that caught fire.

      Mediaite. Trump Walks to St. John’s Church After Protesters Cleared Away; Slammed for Photo Op.

      Rev. Donald Trump Speech Transcript at Kennedy Space Center After SpaceX NASA Launch.

      Trib Live. White House: Trump church visit akin to Churchill WWII role.

      YouTube. President Donald Trump Speech at Kennedy Space Center After Space X Demo-2 Launch 5/30/20.

      Western Journal. Park Police Expose Media Lies on Trump's St. John's Walk: 'No Tear Gas Was Used.'

 

Peaceful Moments:

      ABC News. Photos: Moments of peace, unity you may not have seen in George Floyd protests.

      ABC News. Why some police officers stood with protesters outraged over George Floyd’s death.

      NBC News. Eric S. Clifford As chief of police, I knelt for George Floyd to show the people I serve that black lives matter.

 

Trib Live on National Events:

       Note: Trib Live is the website for my local newspaper and two other Pittsburgh area newspapers.

      Trib Live. Fox News reporter attacked amid protest near White House.

      Trib Live. Trump as thug or hero? Depends on what network you watch.

      Trib Live. Trump slams governors as ‘weak,’ urges crackdown on protests.

      Trib Live. Pentagon ready to send troops to Minneapolis if state asks.

      Trib Live. Protests force Target, CVS and Walmart to close some stores.

      Trib Live. Report: Trump rushed to underground bunker during protests.

      Trib Live. Trump vows to stop ‘mob violence’ in protests over Floyd death.

 

Shop Owners Beaten/ Defensive Gun Use:

      DML. VIDEO: Philly gun store owner was ready when looters broke into store, 1 dead.

      Fox News. Tucker Carlson: Our leaders have dithered and lied about the riots as the nation goes up in flames.

      Spectator, The. Owner of Philadelphia gun store shoots and kills armed looter during break-in.

      TMZ. Man Viciously Beaten for Defending Business.

      Townhall. Man Reportedly Trying to Defend a Local Business Savagely Beaten By Rioters in Dallas.

      Twitchy. Dallas man with a machete allegedly trying to protect his neighborhood hospitalized after vicious beating.

 

Pittsburgh Protests, Rioting, and Vandalism:

      CBS Pittsburgh. ‘Damn Shame’: Pittsburgh Police Chief Says White Males Dressed In Anarchist Attire Hijacked George Floyd Protests Downtown.

      Trib Live. 20 arrested as protests turn violent in East Liberty, Shadyside.

      Trib Live. Across Downtown Pittsburgh, city workers, volunteers clean up after protests.

      Trib Live. Calm after storm: Pittsburgh vigil promotes unity; protesters spray paint Downtown roads but remain peaceful.

      Trib Live. Fountain, historical marker vandalized in Highland Park.

      Trib Live. George Floyd protests in Pittsburgh: Curfew in effect; protesters turn violent; police cars torched.

      Trib Live. Mayor Peduto, Public Safety chief defend how Pittsburgh police handled weekend protests.

      Trib Live. Pastors, hundreds gather in Hill District for peaceful George Floyd protest.

      Trib Live. Pittsburgh extends overnight curfew another day.

      Trib Live. Police release names of people arrested during Pittsburgh protests.

      Trib Live. Pittsburgh police say rioters tossed bomb, molotov cocktail during initial protests.

      Trib Live. Shaler man accused of inciting riot that led to violence during Pittsburgh protests.

      Trib Live. Shaler man accused of inciting riot during Pittsburgh protests faces federal charges.

      Trib Live. The morning after: Repairing damage from protests in Pittsburgh.

      Trib Live. ‘Very peaceful’ protest brings people together in Greensburg.

 

Systemic Racism and Killings by Cops in General:

      CSNNews. Levin: There Is No Systemic Racism or Sexism in America.

      Daily Signal. Why Does the Left Ignore Black-on-Black Crime?

      Daily Wire. 5 Statistics You Need To Know About Cops Killing Blacks.

      Daily Wire. 7 Statistics You Need To Know About Black-On-Black Crime.

      YouTube. Tucker Carlson. June 3, 2020. Or click here.

      Mediaite. NatSec Adviser O’Brien: ‘I Don’t Think There’s Systemic Racism’ in Law Enforcement, ‘Bad Apples’ Need to Be Rooted Out.

      Merion West. The Myth of Institutional Racism.

      Quora. Do cops really kill more blacks than whites?

      Reddit. Is systemic racism real in the US?

 

SCOTUS Church Ruling and Space X Launch and Docking:

      Fox News. Supreme Court rejects challenge to limits on church services; Roberts sides with liberals.

      Fox News. SpaceX makes history, launches NASA astronauts into space from US soil for the first time since 2011.

      Trib Live. SpaceX captures the flag, beating Boeing in cosmic contest.

      Trib Live. SpaceX’s historic encore: Astronauts arrive at space station.

 

Protests Turned Riots (Lockdown Frustration, Domestic Terrorism, and Lack of Respect) Part Two. Copyright 2020 by Gary F. Zeolla (www.Zeolla.org).

Tearing the USA Apart
From Kavanaugh, to Incivility, to Caravans, to Violence, to the 2018 Midterm Elections, and Beyond

            The United States of American is being torn about by political differences more than any time since the 1960s and maybe since the Civil War of the 1860s. This division was amplified by political events in the summer to fall of 2018. This time period could prove to be seminal in the history of the United States. This tearing apart came to the forefront and was amplified during the confirmation proceedings for Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh. This book overviews the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation proceedings in detail. It then overviews these additional major events that occurred up to the end of November 2018.

The above article was posted on this website June 2, 2020.
The Updates were added June 4, 2020.

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