Sympathy for rioters?

“The British, for their part, persisted in seeing the American colonies less as a collection of people whose needs should be attended to, then as the means by which the wealth and power of England could be enhanced. Colonial interests were, above all, subordinate to those of Englishmen in England. This attitude was not odd, because the interests of a great many Englishmen, primarily those too poor and debased to make their wishes known in any other way but through desperate riots, were similarly subordinated to the interests of their betters.” Page Smith in “A New Age Now Begins: A People’s History of the American Revolution” Volume 1 p. 139

Is there ever a case to be made for sympathy with rioters as human beings? For the reasons why they riot, if not how or that they riot? Page Smith seems to draw an analogy between the early American struggle for Independence and the hopeless riots of poor Englishmen.

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