There are many types of people and many groups as well. As in every group there are exceptional ones and the medium, or neutral ones, no matter how you assess the group. Among the extremes, there are exceptionally smart people and exceptionally dull ones, there are exceptionally empathetic ones and exceptionally selfish ones... The neutral ones are somewhere in between leaning one side or the other, sometimes they can change the "side" under influence of the environment.
Anyone has their form of regulatory feedback constantly comparing their status against their expectations and the others. The exceptionals have either low level of the feedback at all (I am who I am. period) or weak influence of the surroundings (I want to be an astronaut and I will be one!). The mediums try to conform with the others, some to the level they have no own opinion (which is exceptional in other measure...). If their surrounding get wild, they get as well, if the surrounding act bravely, they are brave as well.
In this case in Minnesota several millions of people live. Every single day many people die there, many are born as well. Many are arrested, harassed, many live their lives calmly. There is no coverage of this in any media, because it is just a normal daily life routine. Nobody cares about it.
But there is one guy killed by another one and every single newsroom from the anywhere is broadcasting live news about it. Because violence sells. Violent death doubly so. The other news that sells are super-rich celebrities affairs (drugs, sex, violence,... the more shocking the better!). Those who watch news are overwhelmed by those bestseller news. And only thing they can compare it with are their shitty lives - mortgage, debts, taxes, dull boss,...
They are in their bubble frustrated. They are being filled with anger, fear.
There are people who calmly protest against the system - do not confuse it with government, though. Some are fighting it through helping the vulnerable, some are joining the open discussions, some are organizing rallies, some take part in those rallies. Some don't give a damn. The exceptionals do take actions, the neutral ones are watching the situation or take some actions with the herd.
There is also group of exceptionally violent people and there is significant amount of latently violent people. The most extreme ones does not need any excuse, they are randomly aggressive. Some just need something to "fight" for and the frustration helps them to justify the reason for the violence.
There are also psychopaths that love chaos outside and actively but surreptitiously support and propagate the frustration, spark the conflicts etc.
We can clearly identify at least one psychopath, I won't mention the president, because it is far away from Parenting.SE, enjoying and profiting from the situation.
We can identify groups of people that disagree with the status quo - the officer caused a death of the suspect ignoring their status.
We can identify the violent herd rioting American cities. This herd is full of neutral people set in the violent frame, so it is normal for them now. Many are hiding themselves in the huge herd thinking they are invincible...
You can also see that:
- People from those three groups seldom mix.
- There is a small group of leading rioters and huge herd that follows them.
- When the calm protest turns wild the original protesters are labelled as "traitors" and attacked by the new protesters.
- The riot is localized so there is a huge density of rioters per square meter. When spread out, the riot weakens and extinguish.
Maybe explaining them that not all people are good will help. Explaining that not everybody has good intentions. Explaining them that there are logical fallacies that many can be fooled by...
Another way is setting up a thought experiment:
- Imagine big room with N apes, a ladder in the middle and a banana above the ladder. Anytime a ladder is touched entire room is sprayed by cold water.
- What will happen, when some ape touches the ladder? (all the apes got a cold shower)
- What will happen within few days? (apes will avoid the ladder)
- Now, remove one ape from the room and put another one in. What will happen? (the new one tries to get the banana and the others will attack them even before they reach the ladder, because of the shower about to happen again)
- Now, turn the water spray off. What will happen? (the apes will still protect the ladder from being climbed)
- Wait until situation settle down.
- Now remove one ape after another while placing new ones at the time. What will happen? (the "old" apes will defend the ladder against the "new" apes).
- Continue until you remove all the "original" apes.
- What will happen if you put another one in? (the herd will attack the newcomer reaching for the ladder even though there is no reason for it.)
You can see how a group can transform from one calm state to violent one just by sharing noncomplete information. The later apes are attacking the newcomer just because the others do so.