Aug 25, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Jacob Blake's mother calls for prayers, end to violent protests in Kenosha

Jacob Blake's mother, Julia Jackson, implored Kenosha residents on Tuesday to bring an end to the violence that followed the police-shooting of her son, adding, "We really just need prayers."

Why it matters: Kenosha, Wisconsin, has been in a state of chaos since police shot Blake, a 29-year-old Black man, eight times — months after the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Protests have consumed Kenosha with calls for racial justice and an end to police brutality.

The state of play: Attorney Ben Crump, who has represented other victims of police shootings and their families, commented on Blake's condition Tuesday afternoon.

  • "The medical diagnosis right now is that he is paralyzed, and because those bullets severed his spinal cord and shattered some of his vertebrae ... it is going to take a miracle for Jacob Blake Jr. to ever walk again."
  • "He is currently in surgery as we speak still struggling to sustain his life and to hopefully become some resemblance of the man he once was."

What they're saying: "If Jacob knew what was going on, as far as that goes, the violence and the destruction, he would be very unpleased," Jackson said. "So I really am asking and encouraging everyone in Wisconsin and abroad to take a moment and examine your hearts."

  • "As I pray for my son's healing, physically, emotionally and spiritually, I also have been praying, even before this, for the healing of our country." 
  • "Let's use our hearts, our love and our intelligence to work together to show the rest of the world how humans are supposed to treat each other. America is great when we behave greatly."

Catch up quick: Authorities declared an emergency curfew in Kenosha late Sunday as protesters rallied.

  • Demonstrations remained peaceful until the 8 p.m. curfew on Monday. Law enforcement fired tear gas at demonstrators, according to the Washington Post.
  • Protesters threw firecrackers and water bottles, set fires and attacked signs and storefronts, according to the Post.
  • In a move described by the ACLU of Wisconsin as "unnecessary," Evers (D) declared a state of emergency authorizing the state's National Guard to support local law enforcement in what he called "a limited mobilization."
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