Protestors recently surrounded a government building in Washington, D.C, and it escalated into a riot. Armed with flags and signs, they chanted their favourite slogans as they assaulted police officers. Their attempts to storm into the building forced law enforcement to escort politicians out to safety. By the time it was over, the area was covered in smoke—it looked like America was being burned to the ground.
But what’s most disturbing is, I’m not only referring to the Capitol Hill riot. I’m not just referring to one riot—I’m referring to two separate riots, months apart.
You probably don’t remember that one weekend during the Black Lives Matter riots last summer—when the president of the United States was escorted to an underground bunker by the Secret Service. You probably don’t remember the images of Black Lives Matter rioters attacking police officers in Washington, D.C as they attempted to breach the White House fence.
You probably don’t know the Black Lives Matter riots last summer resulted in 25 deaths and over 400 injuries.
The Capitol Hill riot and the Black Lives Matter riots have a lot in common. But many of us refuse to acknowledge that because of our partiality.
If the Capitol Hill riot was filled with Black Lives Matter and Antifa signs instead of MAGA signs, many conservatives would have been less sympathetic with the rioters. On the day of the riot, I tweeted:
“Some MAGA supporters have shown today they would support Antifa if Antifa was on their side. They don’t hate Antifa’s antics, they only hate their politics.”
One reply said, “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”
The vast majority of conservatives didn’t justify the riot. However, many blamed Antifa. They claimed the rioters—or most of them—were Antifa members posing as Trump supporters. And although the FBI recently confirmed that a member of Black Lives Matter played a role in the riot, there’s no evidence that Antifa members were involved in the riot.
These kinds of reactions from some conservatives are actually similar to how Black Lives Matter supporters reacted to last summer’s riots—when they suggested the riots were caused by white supremacists who had infiltrated Black Lives Matter protests.
These destructive reactions, however, are connected to destructive reasoning. The protestors at the White House and the protestors at Capitol Hill are opposing groups, but they share identical suspicions about their government.
They were compelled to riot because they believe they’re victims of systemic injustice.
Black Lives Matter believe they’re victims of systemic racism, and many Trump supporters believe they’re victims of systemic fraud in the 2020 election.
Both of these claims, however, are not true. They cannot be supported by evidence. In fact, evidence shows they’re not true. Isolated events do not prove systemic injustice. Racism, of course, exists. That, however, doesn’t mean it’s systemic. In the same way, voter fraud exists. That, however, doesn’t mean it’s systemic or widespread—certainly not enough to switch at least 6 million votes for Trump to Biden, as Trump claims.
This isn’t out of character for Trump. Remember, he blamed losing the popular vote in the 2016 election to voter fraud.
Like 2016, Trump failed to prove his claims about the 2020 election in court. In fact, Trump’s legal team didn’t even repeat Trump’s original claims in court. Instead, they’ve only challenged a relatively small number of votes that wouldn’t even change the outcome of the election. And yet, though these legal battles were presented to some conservative, Trump-appointed judges, they still lost.
Like Black Lives Matter supporters who refuse to accept the outcome of a trial when it doesn’t go their way, many Trump supporters are doing the same thing today. And just like Black Lives Matter supporters, some Trump supporters resorted to political violence to express their frustrations.
Nevertheless, although there isn’t evidence of systemic voter fraud, the election was clearly rigged for Joe Biden. The Democrats used COVID-19 to make voting changes that benefit them. And especially, the mainstream media and social media colluded with Joe Biden and the Democrats to shape the outcome of the election.
Actually, the Democrat’s and the media’s political partiality is a major reason why the Capitol Hill riots happened. Except, unlike elected Democrats last summer, elected Republicans have not defended or justified the Capitol Hill riot.
Yet, even today, Democrats and the media continue to suggest the Black Lives Matter riots were peaceful. They refuse to be impartial. But I expect that from evil political leaders, I shouldn’t expect that from evangelical leaders.
In a since deleted tweet, one evangelical leader said:
“Its a good thing these riots are starting so I can again blame black people for the mistreatment they receive.” -lots of folks on Twitter who were really uncomfortable having to acknowledge the police brutality that killed George Floyd. But now, their narrative is safe again.”
And yet a few days ago, the evangelical leader blamed some Christians for the Capitol Hill riot. It’s concerning when some evangelical leaders seem more willing to defend Black Lives Matter than the Church.
The problem with political partiality—like any form of partiality—is, it produces a more hateful and violent culture. It doesn’t rejoice in truth, it rejoices in tribes.
America is in a dangerous position right now. If Christians in America do not maintain impartiality, who will?