The murder of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis Police Officer (and psycho?) Derek Chavin while three other police officers stood by should sadden and outrage any human being with a conscience.
So should what's been happening in United States cities in the days and nights following the murder sadden and outrage us: violence, vehicles set on fire, stores looted.
I well remember the consequences of the 1968 riots in Washington, D.C. An entire section of downtown Washington remained a blight for years upon years:
The property loss caused by the riots was extensive and included damage to 1,199 buildings, including 283 residential and 1,590 commercial units. Losses to at least partially insured properties in the concentrated area of looting and destruction were estimated at $25 million. Insurance covered only 29% of the total loss suffered by these businesses. As a result of the riot damage, an estimated 2,900 insurance policies were cancelled and 500 businesses suffered inflated insurance rates. The Board of Trade estimated a loss of $40 million in tourist trade during April and May including those due to the cancellation of the National Cherry Blossom Festival.The same will happen to these cities being ravaged today.
The riots devastated Washington's inner city economy. With the destruction or closing of businesses, thousands of jobs were lost, and insurance rates soared. Made uneasy by the violence, white flight from the city accelerated, depressing property values. Crime in the burned out neighborhoods rose sharply, further discouraging investment.
On some blocks, only rubble remained for decades. Columbia Heights and the U Street Corridor did not begin to recover economically until the opening of metro (subway) stations at U Street in 1991 and Columbia Heights stations in 1999, which in turn assisted the areas' gentrification in the 2010s.
The destruction of property is no way to grieve — and serves only to perpetuate a particular racial stereotype, thus setting back race relations for years to come.
I weep for our republic and can barely watch the news during these terrible days.