The riot strategy may be backfiring on the riot party.
That comes from that notorious right-wing rag, the New York Times.
John Geraghty, a 41-year-old worker in a tractor factory, has barely paid attention to the presidential race or the conventions.
Every day he focuses on survival: getting his son to sports practice, working at his job where he now wears a mask, and getting home to sleep, only to start over again the next day.
But when he woke up on Monday morning to images of his hometown, Kenosha, Wis., in flames, he could not stop watching. The unrest in faraway places like Portland, Ore., and Minneapolis had arrived at his doorstep… And after feeling “100 percent on the fence” about who he will vote for in November, he is increasingly nervous that Democratic state leaders seem unable to contain the spiraling crisis.
The New York Times is elbowing Democrats and rioters about the political consequences of burning down cities.
Mr. Geraghty, a former Marine, said he was disturbed to see his town looking like “a war zone,” and he feared that the Democrats in charge were “letting people down big time.”
Politics for him had long been like a sport he did not follow. In his late 20s, he voted for Barack Obama, the first vote of his life. He did not vote in 2016, and he called the president’s handling of the coronavirus “laughable.”
Mr. Geraghty said he disliked how Mr. Trump talked but said the Democratic Party’s vision for governing seemed limited to attacking him and calling him a racist, a charge being leveled so constantly that it was having the effect of alienating, instead of persuading, people. And the idea that Democrats alone were morally pure on race annoyed him.
“The Democratic agenda to me right now is America is systematically racist and evil and the only people who can fix it are Democrats,” he said. “That’s the vibe I get.”
Reality gets hard to ignore when it’s at your doorstep. And when all the people you voted for can do is call you a racist.
The politically calculated warnings of President Trump and the Republican Party about chaos enveloping America should Democrats win in November are reverberating among some people in Kenosha… some voters who were less sure of their choice said the chaos in their city and the inability of elected leaders to stop it were currently nudging them toward the Republicans.
Ellen Ferwerda, who owns an antique furniture store downtown just blocks from the worst of the destruction that is now closed, said that she was desperate for Mr. Trump to lose in November but that she had “huge concern” the unrest in her town could help him win. She added that local Democratic leaders seemed hesitant to condemn the mayhem.
“I think they just don’t know what to say,” she said. “People are afraid to take a stance either way, but I do think it’s strange they’re all being so quiet. Our mayor has disappeared. It’s like, ‘Where is he?’”
Vote for looters and enjoy the looting. And enjoy your own voters staying home.
Scott Haight, who was boarding up a line of businesses in a Kenosha strip mall on Tuesday, said he blamed Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes, a Democrat, for what he said was irresponsibly stirring up emotion. (On Monday, Mr. Barnes said the shooting “wasn’t an accident.”)
“It’s like ‘What, are you trying to burn our city down?’” Mr. Haight said.
Mr. Haight, 59, said he was a “lifelong Democrat” but had decided not to vote this year.
“It’s not worth it,” he said. “One’s as bad as the other.”
Or voting Trump.
Priscella Gazda, a waitress at a pizza restaurant in Kenosha, was having the opposite reaction. She said she had voted only once in her life — for Mr. Obama in 2008. Her son has Type 1 diabetes and was hoping for health insurance.
“I’m not the one who would ever vote,” she said.
But after the chaos in her town, this year is different.
“I am going to vote for Trump,” she said. “He seems to be more about the American people and what we need.”