Tuesday, November 25, 2014

My Thoughts

I don't normally post about current events or anything that can be deemed political. I was brought up to know that politics aren't something you talk about with other people all that much. If my post offends you, I don't really mean for it to. Hopefully we can all agree to disagree. However, it's my blog and I want to talk about the matter at hand.

I live in Missouri, although I'm about 4 hours away from St. Louis. At least that's how far away I think it is. I'm not really good with those kinds of things.

I don't pay a lot of attention to the news, because most of the time it just breaks my heart.

You all know that my home state has been in the news a lot lately. You all know that last night the grand jury decided that the evidence they were garnished and the accounts that they heard, for 70 hours, made them decide to not indict Officer Wilson on any charges.

I agree with what they decided. That's neither here nor there.

What I really want to talk about is the unrest that is going on.

 I don't understand why people feel that they need to loot the town of Ferguson. What good does this do? Burning down buildings, stealing things from businesses, that is no way to remember a young man who was laid to rest.

I feel that which ever way the verdict was going to go, would cause this chaoticness (not a word but my blog). That in itself is a very unfortunate view to have.

What bugs me the most about this whole thing, is that the media has played it out to be about race. This wasn't about race. Playing the race card here should not matter. Every story I've read has said "a black man was shot by a white officer". Fair journalism should read "a man was shot by an officer". The media needs to get their heads out of their asses and get away from this situation. They are only making the looting and destroying of the town worse. It's like they're the big brother who has to antagonize his little brother just for fun. They have to see what they're doing, and until they stop, the violence in Ferguson will continue.

I work with a girl who's in the Missouri National Guard. She got pulled away from her life on this holiday week to deal with the madness that is going on. I know she signed up for the Guard knowing full and well what in entailed, but my heart still goes out to her and the family she's left behind. Her significant other also works with us. Her heart is shattered. She's scared for her girlfriend. As long as the media keeps this story floating, the longer she'll be there.

The looters see the attention they are receiving, which is what they want. They say it's in "justice" for Michael Brown. How do they tell themselves that? Especially when Mr. Brown's parents said that they don't want people destroying their community. Peaceful protests are fine, rioting protests aren't.

Let's all just agree on one thing, this country does have a long way to go. One day, maybe there will be peace, one day maybe racism will be a trivial thing of the past, one day maybe we all can come together. Until then, I leave my thoughts too the Brown and Wilson families. Because if I know one thing to be true about this, neither of them wanted what has happened or what is currently happening, to be something that's happening at all.


Optimistic Existentialist said...

Definitely a complicated topic. I was not in the grand jury room, nor a part of their deliberations, so I do not know what evidence that they were presented. However, I do find it sad that young unarmed men are frequently killed by police officers in this country. It seems as if it happens on a weekly basis. This is much too regular an occurrence to happen in a free and civilized society. I know police officers have a tough and thankless job, and the vast majority of them are professional, but I feel that police officers are oftentimes WAY too quick to pull the trigger. You can’t take that bullet back once it’s fired. Thank you for this post. One thing we can agree on - we have a LONG way to go in this country...

Stephanie said...

I agree with the decision too. Who knows what went on in that grand jury - but I guarantee no one took it lightly. Everyone is so quick to judge the officer, but they weren't there. What would you do, if you thought your life was on the line? You don't have a whole lot of time to sit there and think it out.
And the looting is just pathetic. Burning that town to the ground helps nothing, it's not justice. If anything, it totally distracts from anything legitimate that's happening around it.

Kerry @ Till Then Smile Often said...

I can't believe the looting and the burning of buildings and cars. It serves no purpose other than to make the hurt spread to those who had no part in it. I think the grand jury too the decision very seriously especially with how emotionally the case has played out.

Brian Switzer said...

You have to look at the bigger picture. For decades a black majority has been systematically oppressed by a nearly all white police force. Hundreds of tickets written every month for jaywaking, for 'impeding sidewalk traffic', for 'loitering' in front of their own houses. Court costs from these nuisance violations are what fund the town. Court is a 9 am cattle call. the court room doors are locked at 9:01. if you are not there an arrest warrant is issued. You are not allowed to read, to talk, to listen to an Ipod. You sit, in court, all for hours. You can go get a drink, or use the restroom. But you aren't allowed back in the courtroom. And a warrant is issued for you arrest. You do this every other Thursday for months, making what payments you can afford against the $780 court costs that were assessed against your jaywalking ticket. A federal investigation showed that on August 6, 2014 82 percent of the black population of Ferguson had current arrest warrants for misdemeanor charges or missed court dates associated with those charges. There wasn't a single nuisance ticket written to a white person for the first six months of 2014.

Into this atmosphere of oppression and resentment throw in an unarmed black man that was shot six times. Michael Brown was the seventeenth unarmed black male killed by police in this country this year. One of them was holding a toy gun in a WalMart when he was killed- you can not count him if you'd like. We don't hear about them because it doesn't affect us but ask a black friend- I guarantee they are aware. Think about that number. What would we do in this country if seventeen six year old white girls were murdered by the police? We'd revolt, that's what.

Read what it's like to be young and black and out driving on your way to work or college and then seeing the police pulling you over. It's a harrowing event that you don't know you are going to survive.

Look at the video of the protestors (not the looters but the vast majority assembling in the streets) after Brown was shot. They had loaded guns pointed at them, were shot with teargas and rubber bullets. For assembling while black in Ferguson MO.

Every group has it's assholes, such as the ones using the verdict as an excuse to loot a shoe store of fifty pairs of Air Jordans. But there is a legitimate rage in that town.

The police in this country have to stop murdering unarmed black men. Until that is addressed towns like Ferguson are going to burn.

Brian Switzer said...

Oh, and I want to know who brought you up not to talk about politics. I've been preaching social justice to you since you were three years old.

Angel Miller said...

I don't get it either. The people who are looting are hurting completely innocent people, in their own neighborhood. I saw on Facebook a lady who was crying because she had a small bakery that she ran on her own, and they just came in and destroyed it. I see nothing but evil in that. I feel like a lot of the people who are looting are just using the situation as an excuse to get away with terrible behavior. If I died in such a way that people thought it was wrongful, I would NOT want people to act like this and attach my name to it!!!

Kristen said...

I know I'm late, but I agree with a lot of what you said.
I don't know if you heard what went on in Sydney yesterday, but some of the idiots on my facebook etc were just spouting the most ridiculous racist crap, I just don't understand why people do what they do or say what they some sometimes.