By Anne Cacherell
This is Papa Palace in West Baltimore. It has been on business for 8 years.
However, during the recent Baltimore protests, a number of businesses, including police cars, were suspiciously burned by people who participated in the riot. This is how Papa Palace looks like today.
The owner and operator of the pizza place Essam El Ghannam had a brutal experience with the rioters. While he was trying to escape the mob, a teenager girl protester poured a lighter fluid on him and his car then tried to ignite the flame to burn him alive.
Luckily, he was able to run for his life. On the other hand, he wasn’t able to save his store. It was burnt and looted. The aftermath was a very devastating sight.
The fire left him with nothing. He wouldn’t even be able to fill the order of this elementary school.
But at the end of the day, Ghannam didn’t choose to give up. He said, “This is my life. I do not know why they do this to me. But it will not stop me. I will reopen. I’m gonna secure my business very good. Get a weapons license and protect my shop.”
What do you think is the purpose and relevance of burning buildings in this recent Baltimore protests? Do you think it will have a positive impact to what these rioters are fighting for? Tell us what’s on your mind.