Trump says 99% of law enforcement are 'great people' as police attack protesters

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Trump also tweeted an attack on a protester hospitalized after he was assaulted by police.

Donald Trump lauded policing in the United States on Monday, rejecting the notion of any systemic racism in law enforcement.

Trump's praise for the police came as protesters across the country continued to face violent police attacks.

"We want to make sure we don't have any bad actors in there. And sometimes you'll see some horrible things, like we witnessed recently. But 99 — I say 99.9, but let's go with 99 — percent of them are great, great people," Trump said at a roundtable discussion with administration officials, several state attorneys general, and representatives of police departments and organizations at the White House.

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Mass protests continue in communities across the country to demand an end to police brutality and racism — and peaceful protesters across the country continue to be attacked by police.

Last week, six officers in Atlanta were charged with using excessive force during a protest. On Monday, two Minnesota law enforcement agencies admitted that officers had slashed the tires of vehicles parked near protests in Minneapolis.

Trump also tweeted attacks on protesters himself on Tuesday morning, making the baseless suggestion that a 75-year-old man in Buffalo, New York, who was assaulted by police officers as he protested was an antifa crisis actor.

Tweeted Trump, "Buffalo protester shoved by Police could be an ANTIFA provocateur. 75 year old Martin Gugino was pushed away after appearing to scan police communications in order to black out the equipment. ... I watched, he fell harder than was pushed. Was aiming scanner. Could be a set up?"

The protester, Martin Gugino, was pushed to the pavement by the officers and struck his head. As of Monday, Gugino was still hospitalized in what his attorney called "serious but stable condition."

The attorney, Kelly Zarcone, said in a statement, "We are at a loss to understand why the President of the United States would make such dark, dangerous, and untrue accusations against him."

Two officers have been charged with second-degree assault in the incident.

Trump isn't the only member of his administration to downplay the issue of police brutality against black people.

Attorney General William Barr told CBS News on Sunday that he does not "think the law enforcement system is systemically racist."

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf told ABC News Sunday, "I do not think that we have a systemic racism problem with law enforcement officers across this country."

Acting Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security Ken Cuccinelli told CNN on Sunday that "we do not have a systemic racism problem in our policing in this country" and that George Floyd's race had nothing to do with his killing.

An August 2019 study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that African Americans are 2 1/2 times more likely to be killed by law enforcement than are white people.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.