The riot where Dr. Hawkins was shot is based on the riots that erupted in Los Angeles after the acquittal of the police officers involved in the Rodney King beating incident.
The problem appears to be neurological. The more you use the harness, the more dependent on it you become.
Dr. Miles Hawkins: It's a technical problem. All progress comes at a cost.
Hawkins' Assistant: The harness is destructive, Doctor! If you continue to wear it, you sacrifice any hope ...
When MANTIS is holding Kid MG over the edge of the building, he jumps down to the ground quickly, and the wire holding MANTIS is visible as he descends.