Minn. Gov. Walz enlists entire Nat’l Guard amid riots, marks first time in state history
UPDATED 9:45 AM PT — Saturday, May 30, 2020
Minnesota has mobilized its entire National Guard for the first time in history. On Saturday, Governor Tim Walz announced the state is moving forward to ensure safety, security and peace by assembling around 1,700 guard members.
“I am authorizing and talking to General Jensen to fully mobilize the Minnesota National Guard, an action that has never been taken in 164-year history of the Minnesota National Guard,” stated Walz.
More than 1,000 additional Citizen-Soldiers and Airmen are activating today. This is in addition to the 700 that were on duty as of late last night. This represents the largest domestic deployment in the Minnesota’s National Guard’s 164-year history. pic.twitter.com/aV9NOFv5uo
— MN National Guard (@MNNationalGuard) May 30, 2020
Overnight, the mayor also imposed a citywide curfew to try and curb the destructive protests.
We have implemented a temporary nighttime curfew in Minneapolis and St. Paul in order to restore peace.
It will be in effect from 8pm-6am on Friday and Saturday night. I urge Minnesotans to comply – It’s time to rebuild our community.
— Governor Tim Walz (@GovTimWalz) May 29, 2020
His announcement followed this week’s violent and destructive riots, which the governor claimed have “nothing to do with the death of George Floyd. He went on to offer his condolences to business owners, whose livelihoods have been destroyed and damaged by rioters.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey also noted 80% of the people damaging property and looting were not citizens of the city, having traveled from out of state.
Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz: “Let’s be very clear. The situation in Minneapolis is no longer in any way about the murder of George Floyd. It is about attacking civil society, instilling fear and disrupting our great cities.” https://t.co/a9S9a49kht pic.twitter.com/ZnTEXcmeeu
— CNN (@CNN) May 30, 2020
According to the governor, peaceful protests that were scheduled will resume Saturday in honor of Floyd will be carried out in a civil and safe manner.
Minneapolis the morning after pic.twitter.com/tMmlNjHYaM
— Jack Posobiec (@JackPosobiec) May 30, 2020
On Friday night, the Pentagon ordered the army to put several troops “on the ready” to possibly deploy to Minneapolis. This included soldiers from Fort Bragg in North Carolina and Fort Drum in New York.
The units would be deployed under the Insurrection Act of 1807, which was last used nearly two decades ago in the Los Angeles riots following the Rodney King trial. The 1991 case prompted violent protests when four policemen were acquitted for the beating of a black man.
Meanwhile, Second Amendment advocates have come to the defense of local businesses in Minneapolis. Over the last few days, video footage has surfaced of both black and white Americans showing up armed in the Twin Cities to protect local stores.
Resident Michael Solomon has said he’s guarding businesses to protect the personal property of store owners and to guard the First Amendment right of peaceful protesters.
“Cops are a lot less likely to try and tread on people’s rights when there’s other armed Americans with them,” he explained. “So, we figured it’s about damn time some, or at least I figured that it’s about damn time, some heavily armed rednecks stood with fellow citizens.”
Solomon was just one of many First Amendment advocates bearing arms in the area as George Floyd protests continued Friday. Residents were also seen assisting in cleanup after the streets cleared.
Morning in Minneapolis. Members of the community coming out to clean up the sidewalks after this US bank was burned. pic.twitter.com/6Ois6RFk17
— NBC News (@NBCNews) May 30, 2020