As I mirror on the occasions on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, I can’t assist however evaluate them to the occasions on the Duluth jail on June 19, 1920.
In Duluth, a mob shaped after the false allegation of the rape of a younger white girl, and 6 Black suspects had been held within the downtown jail. The police chief, captain, and lieutenant left the town to make extra arrests, leaving the boys within the jail vastly underprotected. The commissioner of public security ordered the few officers left to not use their weapons towards the mob, which broke down doorways and home windows, pulled the boys from their cells, and beat and hanged them. The National Guard arrived solely after the lynchings had been full.
In Washington, D.C., the U.S. Capitol Police didn’t appear to anticipate the menace posed by hundreds of people that shared their plans on-line to overrun the Capitol and who had been inspired by President Donald Trump. The Capitol Police turned down presents of further regulation enforcement presence. Some officers tried to defend the Capitol, a minimum of one took selfies, and others supplied little resistance, permitting many to go away with out arrest.
However, there’s a lengthy historical past of regulation enforcement allowing behaviors by whites and white supremacists that may be met with violence or demise if performed by folks of colour. Look on the pepper spray, tear fuel, and rubber bullets used towards water protectors and people protesting police brutality. Consider warnings that these protesters would face a minimum of 10 years in jail for damaging federal buildings. Contrast that with the restraint proven white pro-Trump rioters, who battered doorways, strolled by means of the Capitol’s halls, after which returned residence.
One hundred years later, we’d do properly to reckon with unremitting use-of-force double standards.
Elena Cowen Bantle