Aradio host in Seattle has apparently changed his outlook on how dangerous rioting is in the city after his apartment complex was damaged by anti-government rioters over the weekend.
ESPN radio personality Paul Gallant replied to a tweet from President Trump last month in which the president exclaimed, “The terrorists burn and pillage our cities, and they think it is just wonderful, even the death.”
“Walked through it last night out of curiosity and saw no burning, pillaging, or deaths,” Gallant replied. “Chill dawg.”
Among the businesses targeted was a Starbucks on the bottom floor of the building in which Gallant said he lives.
“Came home to my apartment complex. The Starbucks underneath has been destroyed, and cops are telling us to stay away in case something explosive is inside,” he tweeted on July 25. “I feel like I need to buy a firearm, because clearly this is going to keep happening. Enough is enough. It looks like a block party down the street from me. Really angry right now.”
Trump has criticized local officials in Seattle and Portland for allowing the violent demonstrations to continue in their cities, suggesting they are afraid of the demonstrators or even complicit in their mission.
“The governor and the mayor and the senators out there, they are afraid of these people. That’s the reason they don’t want us to help them,” Trumpsaidof the chaos in Portland. “They’re afraid. … I really believe they’re actually, maybe even physically afraid of these people because what they’re doing is incredible.”
Late last week, the police chief in Seattle warned local businesses and residents that officers would not be able to successfully contain protests in the city due to a new ordinance that bans the use of nonlethal weapons to control crowds.
Protest organizers and some journalists on the ground have criticized local police in Seattle and Portland, as well as federal officers sent to the areas by the Trump administration, for what they say is excessive use of force.
“This ordinance bans Seattle Police officers the use of less lethal tools, including pepper spray that is commonly used to disperse crowds that have turned violent,” saidPolice Chief Carmen Best.“Simply put, the legislation gives officers no ability to safely intercede to preserve property in the midst of a large, violent crowd.”
Earlier this month, a dozen police officers in Seattle wereinjuredwhile offering protection for a peaceful demonstration against police brutality and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.