We are witnessing in Ferguson, Mo. the oppression of a black community, which, of course isn’t out of the ordinary, with the attendant arrests of working journalists and photographers documenting this violent crackdown.
Not only was there the shooting of a young man, possibly shot in the back while running from the gunman in blue, but we’re are also seeing an armed government agency intent on stopping unbiased media coverage of their over-the-top behavior.
I’m not going to argue the specifics of the killing of Michael Brown as I believe we don’t know all the facts yet. I’m very skeptical that we will ever know the facts as the Ferguson Police Dept. the mayor and the governor can not be in any way trusted to give us the facts.
This is even more opaque as the “eyewitnesses” tell a very different story the authorities. I’m inclined to believe the eye witnesses except for one very discouraging fact: eyewitness testimony is rarely sufficient to know the truth as different witnesses detail different stories.
But in this case, the seemingly obviously lying by the authorities lends more weight to the eyewitnesses. I, like many of you fellow progressives, want the truth. However, in this hair trigger environment, we are left with highly debatable “facts.”
This however, does not in anyway exonerate the authorities either with the shooting nor with the aftermath of attacking the protesters with highly aggressive, provocative military style behavior.
This event should explode the myth that the police are in minority neighborhoods to protect the residents from the “criminals” in their midst. As any resident of any segregated neighborhood can attest, the police are there to control and oppress the black and brown residents.
If you think I’m blowing smoke here read Alexander’s book, “The New Jim Crow” and for a deeper historical look at this pervasive problem read Sally Haden’s ” Slave Patrols: Law and Violence in Virginia and the Carolina.” Each book will provide in depth insight into law enforcement today and what and who it serves.