Black riots in Milwaukee

15.08.2016

In Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA, riots have dragged on into their second day in response to the murder of an armed African American while police tried to arrest him. Protesters have set fire to several shops and destroyed a bank while accusing authorities of repression and racism.

Repression

Local National Guard units are on high alert while the state police have tried to cope with the protests without additional support. One local resident has been killed and several policemen wounded during protests. 17 people were arrested by security forces yesterday evening.

An American blackhole

Milwaukee, like other cities and towns with a majority African-American population, suffers from unemployment, an either extremely low level or complete absence of education, and an extraordinarily high crime rate. According to local residents, racial problems are also encountered. The majority of the city’s population is African-American, while the majority of top officials are white. The incomes of blacks are also significantly lower than the white population’s.

The system vs. blacks, blacks vs. the system

According to the chief of local police, the police officer who fired the fatal shot was also an African American. Although this might remove suspicion as to a racial motivation on the part of law enforcement officers, there is still the problem of crime, prevalent especially among African-Americans, and the disproportionate rate of violence used by police against ordinary citizens. These have become serious problems for the US. The riots in Milwaukee are not the first of their kind. The African-American community considers itself a victim of the US economic and legal system and is demonstrating a high degree of mobilization to defend its infringed-upon rights and interests. Racial conflicts, coupled with social problems, are an important factor of destabilization in the US.