WashingtonExaminer reports a leading Democratic candidate in a closely watched House race brushed off looting and arson that occurred during nationwide unrest during protests about racism and police brutality sparked by the death of George Floyd.
“What the hell you got snipers on the roof for in a peaceful march? Even if people loot, so what? Burn it to the ground, you know, if that’s what it’s going to take to fix our nation,” retired Air Force Col. Kim Olson said during a live digital event on Tuesday, shown in a clip obtained by the Washington Examiner.
“I don’t think people want me to say that,” added Olson, a Democratic candidate in Texas’s 24th Congressional District, which covers much of the suburban area in between Fort Worth and Dallas.
Olson, 62, made the comment during a several-minute answer to a question about what she thought about far-left calls to disband or defund police departments.
Olson started by saying that while “defunding” is a “tough word,” explaining that she supports prioritizing funding services such as rehab centers and social workers.
“You can’t just tackle the police, you’ve got to tackle some of the social injustice issues that are going on within our justice system,” Olson said. “You can’t train racism out of folks.”
She criticized highly militarized police forces, leading into the criticism of snipers on the roof during a recent march in Dallas and then making the comment about looting and riots.
“This quote is being taken out of context,” Rachel Perry, Olson’s campaign manager, said in a statement to the Washington Examiner on Wednesday. “As a combat vet, Colonel Olson knows first hand the human heartbreak of violence. She knows we cannot use force to fix a systemic problem of undue violence and discrimination perpetrated by those who are sworn to protect and serve. We have to rebuild from the ground up a color-blind public safety institution across America.”