Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D) provided an update on Sunday of his administration’s response to the civil unrest in the Keystone State and, as cities across the state burn, asserted that Pennsylvanians have been “joining together to speak out against this injustice and make their voices heard, peacefully.”
Cities in Pennsylvania — from Harrisburg to Philadelphia — saw violent protests over the weekend, spurred by the death of George Floyd. Two officers in Harrisburg had to be hospitalized as protesters hurled bricks their way, and several officers in Philadelphia were injured as the protests in the streets reached new heights of anarchy. Some of the officers suffered chemical burns to the face.
Wolf largely failed to condemn the widespread violence and pillaging, stating in a Saturday press release that demonstrators were “protesting violence and injustice that occurs far too often against people of color.”
On Sunday, the Pennsylvania governor continued in peddling the “peaceful protest” narrative but admitted that the protests, at this point, have been “co-opted by violence and looting.”
“Every Pennsylvanian should speak out against violence and oppression, and the recent murder of George Floyd in Minnesota has rightfully outraged many of us,” Wolf said, claiming that Pennsylvanians are “joining together to speak out against this injustice and make their voices heard, peacefully” as cities in his state burn.
“But yesterday was a challenging day for many cities in our commonwealth as these peaceful protests were co-opted by violence and looting. This is unacceptable,” he continued, urging everyone to be “peaceful.”
I will continue to work with Mayors Kenney, Peduto, Papenfuse, and others to make sure that everyone is able to make their voices heard, while keeping each other safe, and I want to thank of all our first responders. I urge everyone to be peaceful. I urge everyone to have respect for our communities and our neighbors. I urge all of us to continue to call out injustice. I don’t want to lose sight of why we are here.
“I want to again send my condolences to the family and friends of George Floyd, and everyone impacted by oppression, racism, and violence,” Wolf said, stressing the need to eradicate racism.
“Every day, in every corner of our society, we need to work at eliminating racism. That means we need to do our part to address racism – from the smallest thought to the biggest action – here in Pennsylvania, too,” he added.
Many, including President Trump and Attorney General William Barr, have emphasized that the protests engulfing the nation have taken the form of far-left radical groups like Antifa, resorting to violence and sowing civil discord.