In preparation for the upcoming election, state and federal government officials have started preparing for possible riots and unrest. AP news wrote that “the efforts are broader and more public-facing than in past years as fears grow over the potential for violent clashes in cities across the United States.” It was reported that according to experts, there are no specific incidents or information that are leading officials to prepare, but rather the general political climate of the nation over the past months.
“Democrats and Republicans alike have portrayed America’s choice in apocalyptic terms—one in which the rise of fascism or communism hangs in the balance for defining the nation’s future.”W.J. Hennigan, TIME Reporter
The Left believes the Right will be to blame. It is argued that President Trump has stoked paranoia by claiming that the election could be rigged and that conservative groups such as the Proud Boys could incite violence during the elections. “Members of the organization were emboldened by the president’s remarks and viewed them as a call to action,” wrote investigative reporter Shawn Mulcahy regarding Trump’s comments to the Proud Boys at the presidential debate last week.
“There’s really no precedent for this…The legitimacy of the election is being called into question, which has the potential of energizing those who feel they are cheated to perhaps take to the streets.”Paul Brace, Clarence L. Carter Professor of Political Science at Rice University
Many on the Left have also argued that law enforcement have used unnecessary force against protestors in recent months and are worried that they could do the same again if post-election protests take place.
The Right believes the Left will be to blame. It is thought that if Trump wins the election, left-wing protestors will incite chaos and violence similar to what has happened in cities such as New York and Portland in recent months. Journalist Emily Zanotti noted that it seems completely lost on the Left that “most of the current unrest has been perpetrated by demonstrators who identify with the far-left and allegedly facilitated by ‘anti-Fascist’ groups that boast far-left agendas.” Political commentator Ben Shapiro argued that the violence will not only continue but escalate greatly if Trump wins. He called the violence and looting “blackmail” by the Left and said their argument is: “The only way we stop this rioting and looting is if we stop the systemic racism…If [Biden] isn’t elected, well then, the systemic racism hasn’t been stopped, and therefore the violence has to continue.” He believes that the violence will necessitate Trump to invoke the Insurrection Act.
After polling showed the riots were going to cost Biden the election, the totally organic, nationwide rioting stopped.— Cernovich (@Cernovich) October 10, 2020