Since When Is It Okay to Burn Down A Federal Courthouse?

Since When Is It Okay to Burn Down A Federal Courthouse?

The current situation in Portland, Oregon is far from calm and peaceful with various events happening in and around the small city.

Police officials are coming up with multiple strategies on how to bring the entire situation under control. Yet pieces in the puzzle are definitely falling apart.

This is one of the reasons behind the hearing of Attorney General William Barr. At the hearing, Barr defended the decision made by President Trump on sending Federal force to Portland. Most of Trump’s administration is keen on sending Federal agents to bring control and order into different parts of Portland, including Eugene. 

The decision is crucial, mainly because federal properties are being attacked and damaged during the endless protests. And these riots are quite ongoing in the region.

Barr continued to ask the leaders on when and why it is okay to burn federal buildings anywhere in the country. To be more precise, Barr asked when it was acceptable to burn down a federal courthouse in the country. 

Digging into the Details

The death of George Floyd has caused a lot of unrest in the country. Protests have erupted across the country, starting from Minneapolis, where Floyd lived.

Soon after the tragic incident, federal officers were commissioned and sent to Portland. The federal officers had to protect and defend the Mark O. Hatfield Federal Courthouse. This courthouse became the primary target of protesters.

On several occasions, violent mobs have tried to bring down the entire building. They even tried to set the entire courthouse on fire. Many US Marshall guards in duty were attacked during the protests!

This is why Barr had to bring up during the discussion on how to prevent federal courthouses from being burned down.

Digging into the Meeting Details 

Chairman Jerry Nadler told that Barr should be seriously ashamed for allowing federal agents to make such a move. Nadler quoted that the move was made as a part of political discussions. It was all about supporting President Donald Trump, and his intentions, as posted in Daily Mail. 

Barr didn’t keep quiet after hearing Nadler’s words. Instead, he responded, “… when is it ok …. to burn a …. federal courthouse?”

Barr had a pre-prepared statement upon the incident. He calmly mentioned that “events” that unfold around the federal courthouse cannot be treated as a protest in any way.

Objectively, it would turn into a force of destruction that affects the entire country. To be more precise, such events can mean assaulting the whole government itself.

It is quite evident that most of the assaults have been tried to connect with the death of George Floyd. This is one way of desperately justifying illegal acts to appear acceptable.

Barr used the words, “superficial attempts” to describe the actions. He also quoted that such actions cannot be justified by the police officers, found in Minnesota or anywhere across the country. Once again, Barr used specific terms like “lawlessness” to identify the situation. 

Other things that happened during the hearing 

The hearing took place for five long hours. During this course of time, Barr was quizzed and attacked in many ways. An array of issues was discussed as a part of the testimony. It was quite evident that the air between Nadler and Barr was not “friendly”. Both the leaders clashed on many topics. 

For instance, Barr requested Nadler for a short, five-minute break. However, the request was terminated immediately. This led to a series of intense and testy exchange of words between the two. Details about the clash and “intense” moments are shared by Hill, in a twitter post. Barr asked, “……. could we take a 5-minute break?”

Nadler responded, “No”. 

Barr also stressed the fact that he had to wait for a considerable amount of time before the testimony started and he didn’t even have lunch. All of these reasons didn’t move Nadler in any way. He continued to claim that the hearing was about to “end” and that everyone could have a break afterward.