Think back to the spring and summer of 2020. In the aftermath of George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis, Black Lives Matter protests broke out across the country. These morphed into violent riots in multiple cities, which continued for months on end. At every opportunity, the legacy media presented “examples” of police brutality which were often false or misleading, including mischaracterizing the seemingly justified use of force against Rayshard Brooks and Jacob Blake. The result? Further protests, further riots.
As the violence continued, many Democrats attempted to distance themselves from the events. Others joined the legacy media and subtly or overtly justified the violence. However, there was one common theme visible across the entire Left — it was simply unthinkable that the violence be suppressed.
When riots continued in American cities, with local governments apparently failing to act, Trump’s call to employ the National Guard to restore law and order was met with derision. Such threats were presented as examples of authoritarianism, a further warning of Trump’s true fascist tendencies which simply must be stopped.
Indeed, when Tom Cotton — a sitting United States Senator and Army veteran who served in Afghanistan and Iraq — wrote an op-ed for the New York Times titled, “Send In the Troops,” it sparked such a backlash that James Bennet, the Times’ opinion editor, resigned. The newspaper then backed away from its initial defense of Cotton’s piece, blaming a “rushed editorial process” which “led to the publication of an op-ed that did not meet our standards.”
To summarize, as violent riots broke out for months across the country, politicians rejected the need to use force in order to return law and order to the streets. Those who lost homes, businesses, or even their lives were not worth defending.
Flash forward to January 6th, when rioters stormed the US Capitol building. Was the response the same? Were the rioters, as Baltimore’s Democratic Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said in 2015, given the space to destroy? No, of course not. And quite rightly so.
Instead, Washington, D.C., has been shut down. Thousands of National Guard troops have been deployed, with the Capitol “now crawling with more troops than in the United States’s main theaters of war in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria combined.”
Such a response is not limited to Washington, D.C. “Amid FBI warnings of the potential for violence at all 50 state Capitols, governors in roughly a dozen states have called up their National Guards to bolster law enforcement,” according to The Hill.
We should again clarify that the second response is the correct one. Violent rioters threatened the physical safety of elected officials, and the threat was neutralized. But why was the same decisive action not taken when ordinary Americans were the ones under threat?
The reason is simple. Our political class see themselves as more important. They are worthy of protection, while you are not. Not only that, they see their workplaces as more important. The US Capitol building is described as “holy” and “sacred,” and therefore requires protection. Your homes or businesses, however, are not.
Such an attitude is, frankly, disgusting. Politicians are no more important than you or I, and are not deserving of additional basic rights beyond those attributed to every citizen of this country. As individuals of equal value, it doesn’t matter whether it is the US Capitol building or your local independent store. We all deserve to live in peace and security from the violent mob who seek to destroy us.
As homes and businesses lie in ashes, while the US Capitol building stands under constant guard, people must realize that politicians see the average American as “less than.” It’s time for us to tell them how wrong they are.
Ian Haworth is an Editor and Writer for The Daily Wire. Follow him on Twitter at @ighaworth.
The views expressed in this opinion piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.