Thursday, August 14, 2014


AP Photo/Jeff Roberso
I was reading Twitter last night when I came across more details of the situation in Ferguson, MO.

It's awful and disgusting and really, really bad. When looting is going on...when police and citizens are at such odds...when tear gas and rubber bullets are being fired...I mean, really? In Ferguson, MO. In the United States?

As they say, "Merikuh!"


Most awful, of course, is an 18-year-old man is dead. A life that was just getting interesting is over. He was unarmed. He apparently had no criminal background. He, in short, had no reason to be shot.

But he was shot. By police. In a town of mixed races and mixed economics. The police won't release the name of the officer who shot Brown, and of course, they are defending one another.

Oh, did I mention Michael Brown was black? Ferguson is two-thirds black, which is a stark change from just 15 years ago. The police force is predominantly white. Now add in lingering Trayvon Martin outrage and let's play the feud!

Again. Sigh.

The fact that Michael Brown is black is relevant and, yet, I wish it wasn't. But he is, and it is. I'll leave that right there for those of you smarter than I to analyze. What's bothering me more is a man is dead and there is chaos between police and people.

And the media. Wait, what?

Wesley Lowery, a reporter for The Washington Post, and Ryan Reilly of the Huffington Post, were working in a nearby McDonald's, taking advantage of wifi and power outlets, when SWAT officers decided that they were going to kick everyone out. Lowery decided to film the exchange, which initially caught him grief (this is not illegal, by the way). The bottom line is that the police felt the two, who had never met before yesterday, weren't moving fast enough.

They were handcuffed, arrested, taken to jail, booked...and released with no paper trail or reason as to why they were arrested.

This is what Lowery remembers of it all.

Later in the evening, Ferguson police were demanding all cameras be turned off. Yes, TV cameras included. Which is, ya know, illegal and all.

What's got me is that, where I'm used to seeing 24 hours of blathering over things like this, I'm seeing nothing. When the LA riots occurred, I remember watching plenty of live coverage. Last night, I saw Iraq...Lauren Bacall (yes, I know how to whistle, RIP)...Robin Williams (Nanu Nanu, RIP)...and a little Ferguson. I'm more confused than anything else over this.

Again. Staying focused, a young life is over. I think what people want is an answer. Answers. Who was the officer? Why was Michael Brown killed? Why were those reporters arrested? Why did this whole thing evolve into this?

What's going on?

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