Jan. 6 Was Not A Riot

By | August 3, 2023 | 0 Comments

Commentators on the latest Trump indictment, or on the events of Jan. 6, often refer to a “riot.” In a practical sense, it was a riot. But legally, it was not. In order to prosecute someone for rioting, there must be evidence that police declared an unlawful assembly through a bull horn or other way that people could hear it. There is no evidence that police did so on Jan. 6.

Why didn’t they? If the object was to induce people to disperse and go home, the first thing I would do is repeatedly declare an unlawful assembly. On the other hand, if the object was to incite violence that could be blamed on Trump and Republicans, then I would remain silent, unlock and open the Capitol doors, and neglect to post signs that said “Keep Out” or barriers that said “No Entry.” Oh wait – that’s exactly what happened.

Before President George H.W. Bush could send troops to suppress the 1992 LA riot, he signed a proclamation declaring an unlawful assembly. All this goes back to the British Riot Act of 1714. If the government wants people to follow the rules, it must follow them itself. The rules must be crystal clear and apply equally to all. At least that’s the way things used to be.

Social Widgets powered by AB-WebLog.com.