One would think a major report from a group representing America’s top law enforcement leaders analyzing the widespread riots of 2020 would have garnered significant media attention. One also would think such a report would garner widespread discussion after the January 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capital due to the parallels between it and the 2020 riots. Given our hyper-partisan environment, however, one would be woefully wrong.
Specifically, back in October 2020, the Major Cities Chiefs (MCC) released a comprehensive report full of data from dozens of cities that provides deep insights into the 2020 riots that plagued America after George Floyd’s death in Minnesota. The MCC’s “Report on the 2020 Protests and Civil Unrest” served as an excellent after-action report that cities, states, and the federal government could use to reform their practices and, equally importantly, to prepare for future riots.
With the ongoing hunt for and prosecution of January 6 participants and recent actions by Democrat Speaker Nancy Pelosi to veto Republican Kevin McCarthy’s choices for the January 6 Commission, the MCC report has become more relevant than ever. The sheer similarities and differences between what happened with and to the participants of the 2020 riots compared to the January 6 riot and rioters are, frankly, shocking.
First, the left, its media sycophants, and dead-ender anti-Trump Republican Rep. Liz Cheney have spent inordinate amounts of time focused on the fact that the January 6 riot occurred at the U.S. Capitol, as if that building alone serves as the sole symbol of U.S. democracy.
The left and corporate media have always been supportive when people burn or disrespect the U.S. flag, or when left-wing extremists storm Senate buildings to shut down the democratic process involving appointing conservatives to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The left-media-Cheney outrage would appear far less politically driven if the 2020 rioters didn’t also focus, as the MCC report notes, on government buildings and “other iconic public buildings” including city halls, which in our federalist system are equal symbols of U.S. democracy. Here’s the report documenting that.
Now here’s a prime example of dissimilar treatment for far worse actions. The January 6 riot involved no guns or fires among protesters, only makeshift weapons like flag poles, batons, and objects from the area.
In contrast, the 2020 riots involved guns, incendiary devices, lasers, paint bombs, and fireworks that were used to torch buildings and cars, hurt police officers, and destroy meaningful parts of many U.S. cities. Despite the far greater violence and destruction the 2020 rioters perpetrated, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) haven’t hunted those rioters down with anywhere near the vigor and vim used against what are in many cases at most trespassers.
In stark contrast, the left and the media continue to falsely claim law enforcement officers were killed on January 6. While some law enforcement officers were certainly injured during that riot, the numbers and severity are far below the law enforcement injuries from the 2020 riots.
More than 2,000 law enforcement officers were injured during the 2020 riots, with numerous officers being shot and one, retired captain David Dorn, brutally murdered while protecting his friend’s shop from rioters. The 2020 rioters also shot other protestors.
In contrast, the only person violently killed on January 6 was the unarmed protester Ashli Babbitt, at the hands of a Capitol Police officer whose identity still remains unconfirmed by public officials.
We’ve also seen endless stories about the “national coordination” that led up to the January 6 riot among a couple of far-right groups and their members. According to the MCC report, the 2020 rioters appeared to engage in far more detailed and comprehensive national coordination, as evidenced by a similar pattern emerging in city after city. The pattern involved peaceful protestors timing their activities in the late afternoon, thereby allowing rioters the opportunity to engage in looting, violence, and arson when the sun went down.
Much ink also has been spent detailing the far-right extremists involved in the January 6 riot with the heads of the DOJ, FBI, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and even the U.S. Department of Defense claiming that right-wing extremists are the biggest threat to America. Yet little ink has been spent detailing far-left extremists involved in the 2020 riot who unequivocally did far more damage and engaged in far more violence than what happened at the January 6 riot.
Finally, as January 6 rioters and even those present that day who only nonviolently entered the U.S. Capitol are hunted down, charged aggressively, and left in jail for months on end, the 2020 rioters have not been similarly hunted down and charged. Even worse, they are being let go with no penalties or mere wrist slaps, after Vice President Kamala Harris and her Hollywood friends raised funds to cover their bail. No judge ordered the 2020 rioters to endlessly rot in jail.
Lady Justice is supposed to be blind, which is why statues show her blindfolded. Her blindfold clearly has been removed in the United States. The approach to and outcomes for the 2020 rioters as compared to the January 6 rioters vividly highlights America’s justice system now has two standards of justice based on the party affiliation of the prosecutors and the alleged perpetrators.
Left-wing rioters wisely did their acts in cities controlled by Democrats and with Democrat district attorneys, who went soft on them despite their disproportionate violence. In contrast, those who rioted on January 6 had the great misfortune of being in a jurisdiction controlled by anti-Trump Democrats and zealously left-wing U.S. attorneys looking to impress their fellow leftists.
All of these acts and omissions showing extreme bias are driving Americans farther apart and increasing the animosity and mistrust many Americans have towards government.
Those of us on the right agree without reservation that all of the January 6 and 2020 rioters who did bad things should face consequences—all of them, not just the ones whose ideology differs from their prosecutors. That said, the Americans who entered the U.S. Capital without engaging in any destructive or violent act should be set free with at most the same $50 fines as those issued to the rioters who stormed a U.S. Senate building during Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing.
Although they see themselves as the modern-day version of King Leonidas and his fellow Spartans at Thermopylae protecting Greece from the Persian barbarians, it is the left, the media, and Republicans like Cheney who are pushing for two standards of justice to apply to the same type of conduct (or worse), which is reminiscent of a banana republic. As evidenced by a recent survey showing that two-thirds of Americans want the 2020 riots investigated as much as the January 6 riot, a strong majority of Americans know what fairness looks like and firmly believe justice must remain blind.
A core foundation of our country rests on the people believing there is equality under the law. The dissimilar treatment of 2020 rioters and January 6 rioters is fracturing that foundation more with each passing day. As Abraham Lincoln wisely noted, a divided house cannot stand.