After a summer of protests, rage is still flowing. Lancaster, Pennsylvania, erupted in riots this week after a police shooting. And in Los Angeles, a gunman shot two sheriff’s deputies in their patrol car on Saturday, sparking protests against the officers at the hospital treating them and at LA Mayor Eric Garcetti’s home.
Mayors face a tricky balancing act in what has been the costliest civil disorder in U.S. history – guaranteeing the right to free speech and assembly, while maintaining public safety.
Mayors set the tone but can be targeted by protesters: Not just Mayor Garcetti’s home was set upon, but those of mayors in Portland, Oregon; St. Louis; Chicago; Seattle; and Pittsburgh.
The key to managing the disorder, say mayors and observers, is real, noticeable reform, and st...