Jacob Blake, More Riots, and a Forced Narrative

We have all seen the short video of the conflict between police and Jacob Blake. The shooting has led to riots in Kenosha, Wisconsin, wanton destruction of property, and loss of life. The headlines and story from the mainstream media try to shoehorn the incident into the popular narrative of white supremacy and police misconduct. The media turn to sensational headlines: “Police shoot another unarmed black man”; “Man shot while his children watched.”

Undoubtedly, the result of the incident is devastating for the Blake family as they go through a difficult time. We can empathize with the pain felt by Blake’s parents and his children. We can hope that the doctors work a miracle and that he will be able to walk once again.

But, if we are honest with ourselves, the video and facts that are emerging show that Blake was shot not because of racism, but because of reckless decisions that left the police officers with little choice but to shoot.

According to news stories, it appears that police were called to the scene to because of a domestic incident. There are multiple versions floating around the web, but it appears that Blake was the source of the domestic incident. According to the Daily Mail, a woman had called police and told them that Blake was violating a court order that banned him from the premises and he had taken her keys and refused to give them back. Dispatch also informed officers that Blake had an active warrant for his arrest. The charge was felony sexual assault. Because of the warrant, officers had no choice but to try to arrest Blake when they found him.

We are not sure exactly how things unfolded, but police located Blake, ended up tussling with him, and deploying a taser. According to a statement from the Kenosha Professional Police Association, Blake fought with officers, put one cop in a headlock, was armed with a knife, and was tased twice with no effect.

What we see on the video is Blake stomping away from the police as they have guns drawn and are giving him commands to stop. Blake walks around the car where his hands are not visible to officers. Officers follow him, with weapons drawn, and implore him to comply. Blake does not. He then opens the car door and appears to reach in toward the floorboard. At this point, officers try to pull him back by his shirttail and multiple shots are fired. The state department of justice has confirmed that a knife was recovered from the floorboard of the car.

What were the police to do when Blake marched around the car and reached into it? Take a chance that Blake was not reaching for a gun or knife? When I saw Blake open the door and reach in, I knew he would be shot. What else could a reasonable officer do at that point? Blake put the police in a horrible position, and he has paid a substantial price. In the federal system and for the purpose of analogy, an agent may use lethal force “when the agent has a reasonable belief that the subject of such force poses an imminent danger of death or serious physical injury to the agent or another person.” I’d say that the Kenosha officers easily meet this standard. Blake fought them, brushed off a taser, ignored commands, and appeared to reach for an object in his vehicle. He posed a danger to the cops and the many folks standing nearby and watching the incident.

The only issue I noticed with police conduct is the number of gunshots. But, if lethal force is allowed, officers must act until the threat is eliminated. But I do think it is proper for officials to investigate and obtain all relevant information about the shooting.

The fact that the Left, despite plain video and evidence of Blake’s atrocious and dangerous behavior, insist on making Blake a martyr to the social justice cause shows just how desperate they are to force events to fit a narrative. Celebrities and others are calling the shooting an attempted murder that merits criminal charges. Insane.

The false characterizations of the Blake incident unnecessarily feed the flames of division. Indeed, as shown by this video from Portland, radicals are teaching children to “F%&* the Police” and encouraging more unnecessary confrontations.

We live in a society dedicated to ordered liberty. Unfortunately, the mainstream media, Black Lives Matter, Antifa, and those individuals teaching children to hate the police, are destroying ordered liberty. The result is the chaos we see enveloping Kenosha. Streets are rendered dangerous, and private property is meaningless to the mob. Government implements a curfew, shuts down public transportation, and mobilizes soldiers. Order lurches toward oppression, and the liberty of the mob resembles anarchy.

The balance can be restored. But it calls for leaders and citizens to examine incidents such as the Blake shooting with honesty. What happened in Kenosha should not have been used to further an agenda, but the Left could not help itself. The death, destruction, and fear engulfing Kenosha are the fault of these opportunists who seek to tear down our society so they can erect the perfect state in its place. Heaven help us.

UPDATE: In a recent interview, AG Barr states that Blake was armed during the course of committing a felony. Blake had a knife and posed a threat to officers trying to arrest him on an outstanding warrant.

William J. Watkins, Jr. is a Research Fellow at the Independent Institute and author of the Independent books, Crossroads for Liberty, Reclaiming the American Revolution, and Patent Trolls.
Posts by William J. Watkins, Jr. | Full Biography and Publications
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