Trump threatens 'shooting' in response to Minneapolis looting


President Trump early Friday morning lashed out at demonstrators in Minneapolis amid the protests over the death of George Floyd, warning that he would send National Guard troops to the city and that “when the looting starts, the shooting starts.”

“I can’t stand back & watch this happen to a great American City, Minneapolis. A total lack of leadership. Either the very weak Radical Left Mayor, Jacob Frey, get his act together and bring the City under control, or I will send in the National Guard & get the job done right,” Trump tweeted in the early hours of Friday morning.

“These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen. Just spoke to Governor Tim Walz and told him that the Military is with him all the way. Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts. Thank you!” 

Thursday night marked the third consecutive night of protests in Minneapolis over the death of Floyd, the black man who died earlier this week after a police officer knelt on his neck during an arrest. In footage of the arrest, Floyd can be heard saying “I can’t breathe.”

Protesters breached and burned a Minneapolis police precinct amid unrest throughout the city. Thousands of demonstrators marched through the streets calling for the police officers involved in Floyd’s death to be charged with murder. The officers have already lost their jobs.  

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz (D) activated the Minnesota National Guard earlier on Thursday in response to the violent protests that broke out in Minneapolis. Walz signed an executive order Thursday calling up the guardsmen “to help protect Minnesotans’ safety and maintain peace in the wake of George Floyd’s death.”

Trump also lashed out at Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey (D), who has called for peace in the streets of the city. Frey early Friday morning said that he pulled police out of the 3rd Precinct that was set on fire. He confirmed that officers in the area would continue their patrols. The precinct was the base for the four officers involved in Floyd’s arrest, NBC News reported.

Twitter later placed warnings on Trump’s tweets, saying that the messages violated the social media giant’s rules against glorifying violence.

“This Tweet violates our policies regarding the glorification of violence based on the historical context of the last line, its connection to violence, and the risk it could inspire similar actions today,” the site shared.

The move comes just a day after Trump signed an executive order aimed at increasing the ability of the government to regulate social media platforms. The president made the move just days after Twitter placed fact checks on a pair of his tweets on mail-in voting.