The GOP’s ‘Mostly Peaceful’ Hypocrisy

Last summer, after months of protests and riots in response to the murder of George Floyd, the phrase “mostly peaceful,” often used by the media and Democrats to describe the protests, achieved parody status thanks to a CNN clip.

It showed a reporter in Kenosha, Wis., standing in front of a burning building and cars ablaze. CNN’s chyron read, “FIERY BUT MOSTLY PEACEFUL PROTESTS AFTER POLICE SHOOTING.”

Conservatives loved it—me included. It summed up a long, hot, pandemic summer of being told not to believe our lying eyes when it came to the violence we saw either on our TVs or in our communities. Thousands of properties and businesses around the country had been burned, damaged or looted, costing billions.

Still, the reality was a bit more complicated. The “mostly peaceful” thing was mostly true. A study by the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project found that 93 percent of protests were, in fact, peaceful. Part of the problem, according to the authors, was that the media couldn’t resist showing images of violence (duh!), which created a misperception about the protests.

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