Black Lives Matter linked to 91% of riots over three months, study finds

Peter Hasson, DCNF

The Black Lives Matter movement is linked to more than nine-in-ten riots across the country, according to a recent study.

The U.S. experienced 637 riots between May 26 and Sept. 12, and 91% of those riots were linked to the Black Lives Matter movement, according to the US Crisis Monitor, a joint project of the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project and the Bridging Divides Initiative at Princeton University.

Forty-nine states, not counting Washington, D.C., experienced riots during that time period, the study found. California led the nation with 86 riots during that time, closely followed by Oregon with 79 riots during that time period, the data show.

Seven percent of Black Lives Matter-linked events have turned violent, according to the data.

The project defined “riots” as “demonstrations in which any demonstrators engage in violently disruptive or destructive acts (e.g. violence, looting, vandalism, etc.), as well as mob violence in which violent mobs target other individuals, property, businesses, or other groups.”

Black Lives Matter-linked events were defined as: “demonstrations that have a local BLM group involved; when the main issue of the demonstration concerns the police killing of a specific Black person (e.g. George Floyd, Breonna Taylor; when the main issue of the demonstration concerns police brutality against Black people in general; or when the demonstration is in solidarity with the movement in the USA against police brutality against Black people.”

Black Lives Matter Global Network, the national arm of Black Lives Matter, has seen an explosion in financial support from celebrities and large corporations since George Floyd died after a Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck for more than eight minutes, according to video of the May 25 incident.

Some Black Lives Matter leaders have declined to condemn rioting and looting.

Black Lives Matter Chicago organizer Ariel Atkins last month equated looting with “reparations.”

“I don’t care if someone decides to loot a Gucci or a Macy’s or a Nike store, because that makes sure that person eats,” Atkins said. “That makes sure that person has clothes. That is reparations.”

Black Lives Matter New York leader Hawk Newsome downplayed rioting in an April interview with Fox News. “I think that it is a tool of white supremacy to say if you want freedom, then you get it by protesting peacefully,” he said.

In another interview with Fox News in June, Newsome said, “I don’t condone nor do I condemn rioting.”

Black Lives Matter Global Network didn’t return a request for comment.

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