More than 100 St. Louis inmates erupted into a prison riot Saturday, flooding the detention facility, smashing windows, and launching items out of the building from several stories high, including chairs, mattresses, and even a stationary bike.
The explosive unrest came over inmate frustration related to pandemic restrictions that limited visits and stalled court proceedings. Jacob Long, a spokesman for the St. Louis mayor’s office estimated to the Associated Press that about 115 inmates were involved with the weekend chaos, describing them as “extremely violent and noncompliant.”
Despite their destructive acts, the group found solace in their local representative, St. Louis-area Democratic Rep. Cori Bush, who offered the rioters her support on Twitter.
“A riot is the language of the unheard,” Bush wrote, quoting civil rights icon Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. “I want to talk to my constituents in the window. Their lives and their rights must be protected.”
“A riot is the language of the unheard.” – Dr. MLK Jr.
I want to talk to my constituents in the window. Their lives and their rights must be protected.
My team and I are working to ensure that the urgent needs of people who are incarcerated are not ignored. https://t.co/wMq8ecyLQ2
— Cori Bush (@CoriBush) February 7, 2021
After Bush voted with Democrats to strip Georgia GOP Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene from committee assignments last week, it remains an open question now under the Democrats’ new standards whether Bush ought to remain on her committees.
Democrats broke precedent last week when they undermined the integrity of the voters in Georgia’s 14th congressional district by removing Greene from the Education and Budget Committees for the crime of being so-called crazy. Greene had been under fire for, prior to her election, having amplified fringe and debunked conspiracy theories ranging from claims the attacks on 9/11 didn’t happen to the 2018 Parkland school shooting was a hoax.
Bush, however, has now engaged in far more dangerous rhetoric by encouraging a prison riot — which, as Democrats’ impeachment of former President Donald Trump declares, is even grounds for removal from office. Republicans didn’t make these rules.
Bush enjoys no small committee assignments as a freshman member either, serving on the House Oversight and Judiciary Committees. Will Democrats apply the same standards to their own members that they’ve selectively imposed to punish Republicans? They won’t, but it’s worth highlighting the absurdity of weaponizing their House majority by seeking increasingly extreme measures to purge their opponents, which only further divides the country by making martyrs of those they’ve sought to de-platform.