But when Bouie gets down to defending the hands-off law-enforcement response to the white Oregon wildlife refuge occupiers, he doesn't exactly claim that it's because the occupiers deserve restraint:
To observers on Twitter, this caution was galling, especially after a year of highly visible police violence against unarmed black Americans and political fear-mongering over Muslim refugees to the United States. “Let’s be clear,” said columnist Cenk Uygur, “If Muslims had seized a federal building, they’d all be dead by now #whiteprivilege #OregonUnderAttack.” Likewise, thousands of people retweeted an image of an armed militiaman captioned “150 armed white men take over a federal building and threaten violence if removed -- Not a single shot is fired at them” followed by a photo of Tamir Rice with the caption, “12-year-old black boy plays with a toy gun -- is gunned down in less than two seconds without as much as a warning.”If I understand Bouie correctly, the reason it's okay not to shoot Ammon Bundy the way Tamir Rice was shot is that Ammon Bundy is presumed to have allies who'll not only target law enforcement but create hostage situations in which law enforcement might kill a lot of civilians as well as criminals. Or perhaps Ammon Bundy's friends will detonate a truck bomb at a federal building. Law enforcement can't be too cautious.
It’s easy to see why both tweets struck a chord. But ... there’s ... a different history involved. Confrontations at Ruby Ridge and in Waco, Texas, ended with scores of dead (white) civilians, and inspired the Oklahoma City bombing -- the deadliest terrorist attack on American soil prior to Sept. 11, 2001.
Law enforcement has been willing to use lethal violence against armed white protesters and the results were catastrophic. It’s no surprise federal agents are cautious; they walk with the hard-learned lessons of the 1990s. Even if the Bundys are paper tigers, no one wants to relive the past. In that, law enforcement officials are correct.
So I guess this is what Black Lives Matter needs to do: create a network of militias and armed compounds where civilian casualties are inevitable if law enforcement tries to enforce the law. Or perhaps what's needed is a terror network that will target large numbers of civilians if anyone in its ideological cohort is attacked.
Hey, wait -- the jihadists are said to have something like that now. And law enforcement doesn't show restraint. You don't suppose the deference shown to white militia types is just because they're white, do you?