By Gabe Kaminsky, The Federalist
A year ago Tuesday, George Floyd died. Thereafter, hundreds of businesses across the nation were looted by Black Lives Matter and other radicals. MN Fashion and Jewelry in West Philadelphia was one of them.
Masum Siddiquee stood in his home at 2:30 a.m. with his eyes glued to the surveillance cameras depicting activity in his store, he said. His two-decade-old shop, which sells cell phones, games, and jewelry, was being ransacked by criminals. Siddiquee was ready to go to the store and burst through the doors to protect it, but his wife advised him against it.
“I tried to come to my store but my wife said ‘No, don’t go, they’re going to kill you,’” Siddiquee told The Federalist. “I came back four or five hours later after dawn.”
When he finally arrived, the looters were gone. They had taken $200,000 worth of goods and the windows of the storefront were smashed, he said. He cleaned up the place himself, and said, “Everyone was watching, but no one was helping.” The Bangladesh immigrant had worked hard for what he had, and it was destroyed in the blink of an eye.
Before the riot that destroyed it, Siddiquee’s business was closed for more than two months because of strict coronavirus restrictions in the Commonwealth. After opening, he taped signs to the doorway informing customers that only two people with masks at a time could walk in. Only this month is Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf finally easing pandemic orders. But until 70 percent of Pennsylvanians have been vaccinated, Wolf’s mask mandate remains.
The shop owner was denied a bank loan and received no coronavirus aid. He has relied on neighbors for help.
“I borrowed a lot of money from people and my area and I’m still trying to,” he said. “I’m trying to arrange all those things. I’m trying to get back my business.”
The doors are still shuttered to customers. When I spoke to Siddiquee upon calling his store, he answered only because he had happened to stop by and grab an item. He said he “is suffering profoundly” and has “lost everything.”
Read more at The Federalist.