Milwaukee has erupted in violence following the shooting of Sylville K. Smith during a chase with police officers. Milwaukee police have maintained the shooting was justified and there have been no reports of potential charges against the officer. But the city has been forced to impose a curfew. And social media threats against the officer, which seemed to inflame passions immediately following the shooting, have intensified.
In response to the shooting Hillary Clinton said at a campaign rally that there is “urgent work to do to rebuild trust between police and communities…Everyone should have respect for the law and be respected by the law”. On Tuesday Donald Trump essentially accused Clinton of being a bigot and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker said she was “inflaming the situation” and was “trying to imply that the police did something wrong”. This seems incorrect and a bad electoral strategy.
These statements by Walker appear instead to be an attempt to play politics. In the same interview Walker commented that in order to win Wisconsin, a state won overwhelmingly by Ted Cruz during the Republican primary and in which Clinton leads, Trump must focus on Clinton and not creating a sideshow.
Confidence in police has rebounded from last year’s historic low but remains uninspiring. Milwaukee is deeply segregated with a disturbing history of police corruption. And Scott Walker’s interest is in misrepresenting Hillary Clinton’s statement of support for political gain.
Maybe Walker should instead focus on alleviating the tensions rampant in his own state rather than on trashing Clinton, considering Clinton has a higher approval rating.