David Stovall, a professor of Black studies and criminology at the University of Illinois at Chicago, said the uprising sent a clear message.

“This put everybody on notice that folks have had enough,” he said. “They are saying this is what it means to be poor, hungry and fed up, and if we’re really not ready to address the foundational issue of housing, health care and employment, this is what we’re going to do.”

The brazenness of people openly looting and attacking police officers shows that they feel that they have nothing to lose, he added. “You’re so numb, so disaffected and so disenfranchised, so what could be any worse than that?”

“This was no doubt a long time coming.”