A common argument on the Left is that if the police show up in force, it “escalates” the situation. Here is Jamelle Bouie:
honestly don’t know how one watches any of these videos and don’t see how the police are wildly escalating the situation whenever they can. hell, showing up in paramilitary gear is itself an escalation.
— b-boy bouiebaisse (@jbouie) May 31, 2020
But the fact is that it is only when police show up in force that rioting and looting stops, and order is restored. If the theory of police escalation were correct, for instance, Minneapolis would have been at its very worst last night, when the authorities finally got serious. Of course, it was much better than the prior nights.