Earlier tonight (Tuesday, April 28th), the Washington Times published a “breaking news” article entitled “Baltimore protesters defy 10 p.m. curfew, remain in streets.” The headline is pretty much self-explanatory. The Baltimore city government issued a curfew that ordered the Baltimore people off the streets by 10PM. The rioters refused to obey. So far, the city couldn’t or wouldn’t enforce.
Now what? Will cops start to shoot rioters out after 10PM or will the rioters be emboldened by the city government’s inability to to enforce its order by more looting and setting fire to more stores?
Here’s a video of one skirmish between what may have been 30 to 50 Baltimore police and about 15 to 20 black teens. You’d think the cops could easily handle these teens, but the cops are on their good behavior and not shooting the rioters. The rioters are are throwing rocks, bottles and chunks of concrete. The cops are blocking the projectiles with their shields. Then the cops break ranks and make a “trot” for it to get out from under the flying rocks. (The cops would’ve made a “run” for it, but they were generally a little too fat to run, so they trotted.)
The cops could’ve overpowered the rioters if they’d been willing to shoot their guns or use other high-tech weapons against the teens. But, the cops are probably under strict orders not to shoot anyone unless the the rioters start shooting at cops. Because the cops couldn’t shoot, the rioters won a small victory.
That victory will empower the rioters to lash out more boldly against the cops. Sooner or later, one of the rioters may shoot a cop, or a cop may lose his temper and shoot a rioter. Or maybe the National Guard will arrive and shoot a rioter. No matter who shoots first, fi anyone shoots, the other side can be expected to arm themselves and get ready to shoot a bunch of their adversaries.
It just may be that we are waiting to hear that first shot–that first “shot heard ’round the ‘hood”. If that first shot is fired by either side and results in a fatality, all hell may break loose in Baltimore. Baltimore just might provide the first instance of a shooting riot in recent American history.