It has been a bad week in the United States in a bad year marked by remarkable international turmoil. The recession and high unemployment persist at a time when the powerless seemed poised to fight back, creating a recipe for insurrection—as happened first in the Middle East and now in Great Britain. According to Wednesday’s (August 9) Washington Post editorial, “the common factors [sparking the riots] include high unemployment, resentment toward a prosperous and seemingly impenetrable upper class and hatred of the police.”
All that sounds only too familiar, so should the United States expect riots here next? Are recent instances of mob violence in Philadelphia, Milwaukee and Montgomery County Md., leading edges of a wave of violence here? I think the answer is probably not, at least not on the scale of what has happened in London.