The spectacle of mobs rampaging through America’s cities, while police were demonized and told to stand down, convinced millions of ordinary people that unless they owned a firearm, they would not be able to defend their businesses and families.
Moreover, many Democrats backed calls to cut funding to police or to abolish them entirely. The pushback from moderate Democrats was weak, as cities like Los Angeles cut $150 million — more than 10% — of the police budget, and crime surged.
In addition, Democrats and the media demonized ordinary citizens who dared to defend themselves.
When teenager Kyle Rittenhouse used an AR-15-style rifle to protect himself against a mob of rioters in Kenosha, Wisconsin, then-candidate Joe Biden smeared him as a “white supremacist” — a false claim that President Biden was unwilling to retract when it was taken apart during Rittenhouse’s trial last year, when he was acquitted of killing two rioters and injuring a third during the mel?e.
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That does not mean nothing will pass Congress. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has urged his caucus to consider a bipartisan compromise. There is broad public support for “red flag” laws, which allow law enforcement to confiscate temporarily the weapons of an individual who is identified as a potential threat to themselves or to other people.
Republican-governed Florida passed such a law in the wake of the Parkland high school shootings in 2018, and it has been used thousands of times since then.
But broader changes will be impossible. Voters will not soon forget the riots of 2020.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.