Washington, DC – The White House experienced two contrasting scenes over the weekend: as violent protests raged outside, Donald Trump was taken into a special secure bunker within. The bunker is the same one that sheltered Vice President Dick Cheney during the terror attacks of September 11, 2001 as planes were flying towards the capital.
George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis sparked peaceful protests during the day which usually turned into violent riots and senseless looting as dusk tiptoed in. The mayhem was mirrored in dozens of cities across the US, including Washington DC.
With his inflammatory messages over Twitter, Trump has drawn widespread criticism for his response to the protests that have rocked the nation since the video of Floyd’s death began spreading on social media. According to sources, Trump was yet to address the nation, although the close aides had been urging him to do so as the cities across the nation went up in flames.
Curfew was imposed in several cities but in most places stand-offs and clashes couldn’t be avoided. The police engaged in violent face offs with protesters in New York, Chicago, Philadelphia and LA, firing tear gas and pepper bullets to try to disperse crowds. Police vehicles were set on fire and shops were looted in several cities.
Political pundits noted that the US faces a heightened racial turbulence and simmering civil unrest coming to the fore, not seen since the backlash to the assassination of Martin Luther King in 1968.
The outpouring of anger began last week, after a video showed Floyd being arrested in Minneapolis and a white police officer continuing to kneel on his neck for minutes even after he pleaded he could not breathe and fell unconscious. Floyd died.
The National Guard – the US reserve military force for domestic emergencies – announced that 5,000 of its personnel had been activated in 15 states and Washington, DC.
Sikhs of America Condemns
Senseless Violence: Jesse
In a statement, the Sikhs of America condemned, in the strongest terms, the cold blooded killing of Floyd by four police officers using excessive force. Expressing deep sympathy for the affected family and African American community across the nation, Jasdip Singh Jesse, the founding Chair of Sikhs of America called for appropriate action against racism, injustice and discriminatory behavior and asked for maintenance of communal and racial harmony across the nation.
“We are deeply troubled by this senseless loss of life at the hands of police officers and extend our deepest condolences to family and friends of the deceased,” said Jesse, adding, “ We stand ready to help the African American community and others in this hour of need and mourning.”
Without mincing words, Jesse lambasted the “thugs and opportunists who, in the guise of protestors are wreaking havoc on small and big businesses with indiscriminate looting.” Jesse cautioned those indulging in such antisocial acts that attacking good police officers and damaging properties will boomerang on them as this weakens the social fabric of American society. Jesse strongly endorsed the tough language used by Trump to deal with such miscreants. Jesse said, “Those are nothing but petty criminals, crossing state lines and indulging in looting, thus affecting an already fragile economy, suffering due to the Coronavirus.”
Echoing Jesse’s sentiments, Soni, President of Sikhs of America said: “Some of the rogue elements in the police force are giving a bad name to the hardworking law enforcement officers who do their jobs with unflinching dedication, which always inspires unsullied faith from the law-abiding citizens.” Sikhs of America believes in the rule of law and welcomes an appropriate judicial course of action by the authorities.