Photo: AFP
Photo: AFP

US President Donald Trump does not seem to be looking at the recent protests in America with a favourable eye. A black man's death while a white police officer knelt on his neck had triggered large scale protests across the country, and 'Black Lives Matter' has become a rallying cry.

But even as many protested George Floyd's death peacefully, others indulged in incidents of violence, arson and looting. Reacting to the same, Trump had warned in his now censored tweet that "when the looting starts, the shooting starts".

"These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen," he had written at the time. And while one could argue that Trump does indeed have George Floyd's best interests at heart, it does not seem as though the same can be said of him when it comes to the protesters.

You may recall yet another recent incident that had triggered outrage -- where police officers were seen on video pushing a 75-year-old man to the ground in Buffalo, New York.

The video that went viral had been shot by a reporter from local public radio station WBFO and shows the man fall backwards and hit his head against the pavement. But even though he appears to be immobile and was bleeding from the head, officers continue to walk past him.

But if the officials in the video appear to show apathy, President Trump went a step further on Tuesday, wondering if the entire thing had been a "set up".

"Buffalo protester shoved by Police could be an ANTIFA provocateur. 75 year old Martin Gugino was pushed away after appearing to scan police communications in order to black out the equipment. @OANN I watched, he fell harder than was pushed. Was aiming scanner. Could be a set up?" he tweeted.

Now, far be it from us to disagree with the leader of the free world. For all we know, his allegations may be partially or wholly true. But in one 240 character (approximately) tweet Trump managed to suggest that the 75-year-old could be a part of a group that he recently said would be designated a terrorist organisation, and also alleged that the man in question "fell harder than was pushed" and that it could be a set up.

At this point however, this is mere speculation on his part. It would be unfair to deny that people have always been ready to condemn and be cruel to others based on the flimsiest of reasons, and the American President lending his voice to unproven allegations is a tad problematic.

Additionally the fact that an elderly man was pushed around by police officials in the first place -- whatever be the reason why -- appears to have been lost in a debate about the strength of the push in question.

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Free Press Journal