More than a hundred Wisconsin police agencies have backed out of an agreement to provide security at the Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee next month.
The police agencies changed their minds after Milwaukee's police chief decided to handcuff the cops by banning the use of tear gas and pepper spray during the event, which runs August 17-20. Randy Sutton of The Wounded Blue says it's part of the anti-cop mood Democrats seem to be in.
"The politicians who have been staunchly anti-law enforcement have taken the tools away for crowd control, which are low-lethality munitions, tear gas, pepper spray. That's the only way to control out-of-control crowds," Sutton argues.
Anarchist groups like Black Lives Matter and Antifa have promised to show up in force at the convention. Should that result in protests and riots similar to those in Portland, Seattle, and elsewhere around the U.S., Sutton expects that his non-profit – which provides financial and mental help for wounded police officers – will be getting more customers.
"This isn't about R or D here," he states, referring to both major political parties. "This is about the safety of the law enforcement officers who are being tasked with defending the political process."
Sutton maintains that the same handcuffs have already been placed on police in Portland and Seattle – to disastrous effects.
"When you take those tools away, you endanger even more the people in the area and law enforcement officers who are receiving unbelievable numbers of injuries because of the decisions made by politicians," he laments. "Quite literally, they're using their officers for cannon fodder."
Dems trim convention hours
Meanwhile, Democrats have announced they will meet for just two hours each night of their national convention next month in Milwaukee, according to preliminary schedule for the event that has been scaled down due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Joe Biden is expected to accept the party's presidential nomination on the final night of the convention, the schedule released late Wednesday said. Biden's vice presidential pick will be nominated August 19 and is scheduled to address the mainly virtual gathering.
The pandemic has delegates casting ballots remotely, beginning next week. A safety plan announced Monday says everyone attending will have to wear a face mask, consent to daily testing for COVID-19, fill out questionnaires and maintain a physical distance from others.
Associated Press contributed to this story.
In image above, a New York City police officer, among a detail of police guarding City Hall, watches as organizers with City Workers4Justice–an activist organization for city employees–prepare to lead a rally and march calling on Mayor Bill de Blasio to defund the police department, Thursday June 25, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)