Kamala Harris calls protests ‘necessary’
Democratic Vice-Presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris says that ongoing peaceful protests against racial injustice are necessary for the nation’s progress and to keep law enforcement in check.
“Nothing that we have achieved that has been about progress, in particular around civil rights, has come without a fight, and so I always am going to interpret these protests as an essential component of evolution in our country, as an essential component or mark of real democracy,” Harris said.
Harris said that she was so proud of the “brilliance” and “impact” of the Black Lives Matter movement.
“I actually believe that ‘Black Lives Matter’ has been the most significant agent for change within the criminal justice system,” she said.
The California senator and vice-presidential nominee said that protests were necessary in order for people’s voices to be heard.
“The people’s voices must be heard, and it is often the people who must speak to get their government to do what it is supposed to do, but may not do naturally unless the people speak loudly and obviously peacefully,” Harris said.
Her comments come during major protests across the country in response to the deaths of Black Americans at the hands of law enforcement officers. Just last week, a grand jury decided not to move forward with criminal charges against officers who gunned down Breanna Taylor.
The protests in many cases have turned violent and resulted in injuries and even deaths.
In Louisville, Kentucky, two officers were shot during protests that began after the Taylor case was closed.
Democratic Nominee Joe Biden has been trying to offer support to protesters while still denouncing violence.
“Protesting such brutality is right and necessary. It’s an utterly American response. But burning down communities and needless destruction is not. Violence that endangers lives is not. Violence that guts and shutters businesses that serve the community is not,” Biden said in May.
Harris also has a long history of supporting protesters.
“We must always defend peaceful protest and peaceful protesters. We should not confuse them with those looting and committing acts of violence,” she said last month.
Law and order have become a major campaign theme in 2020 with President Donald Trump promising voters that he will restore order to the nation and put a stop to lawlessness. The issue is likely to get a lot of attention in this week’s presidential debate.
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