America’s youth have taken to the streets in Santa Monica, in Minneapolis, in Los Angeles, in New York City, in Washington, D.C., and more, in protest of the horrible police killing of George Floyd, and they’re setting fires, burning businesses — burning St. John’s Church, the historic place of worship for American presidents — looting stores, smashing glass, tossing Molotov cocktails and fighting police.
And they’re doing it with the aid and assistance of mandated, recommended or acceptably worn facial coverings.
A face mask is a looter’s equivalent of a lucky day.
Thanks be to the coronavirus crisis: Every criminal, would-be criminal and aider and abettor to a criminal can carry out his or her criminal act in broad daylight, in bold openness, in brash disregard for law and order, all while disguising identity.
Oh what happy times COVID-19 and the government’s random, unscientific, politically motivated and factually questionable response to the virus has been for Antifa and Antifa’s thuggish types. Most cities, counties and communities have local safety provisions in place that make it illegal to wear facial coverings and hoods with intent to disguise — and if not prohibited by ordinances, the locals at least frown on the full-face coverings, making it odd and suspicious to see them worn in public.
Now “cover thy face” has become national policy.
Facial coverings are hardly odd.
They’re certainly not suspicious.
It’s hardly odd or suspicious to see young men prowl the streets, dark glasses over eyes, black cloth pulled from nose to chest.
What a boon this face mask frenzy is proving for criminal business.
“Chicago looting continues in Wicker Park following continued protests,” ABC7 Chicago reported.
“George Floyd protests spread nationwide,” CNN wrote.
“Some property damage in Wilson after abut 200 gather for protests,” WRAL-TV in North Carolina reported.
“Second day of Atlanta protests ends with property damage, 157 arrests,” AJC.com wrote.
Police say these rioters and looters will pay for their crimes. And some will. Some will be arrested. Some have been arrested.
But it’s doubtful all will.
Many, if not most, will walk away scot-free, laughing into their face masks, confident the local cameras and locals in the area can’t identify them.
And just think: If these face masks become part of America’s “new normal” — so will the anonymous crimes.
Face masks aren’t just a hindrance and a virtue signal of supposed COVID-19 concern for others. They’re cover for criminals.
They’re a criminal’s new best friend.
• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter, @ckchumley. Listen to her podcast “Bold and Blunt” by clicking HERE. And never miss her column; subscribe to her newsletter by clicking HERE.