So I was just attempting to start some homework because it is the end of the semester and then I looked over on the trending topic section on Facebook and see something about Joe Scarborough saying it’s the last straw after seeing five players (Stedman Bailey, Tavon Austin, Chris Givens, Kenny Britt, and Jared Cook) from the St. Louis Rams showing solidarity with the protestors in Ferguson by coming out with their hands up. Well the St. Louis Police Officer Association wanted the NFL to punish these players for what appears to be expressing their first amendment right (Good thing the NFL respects their players’ rights to exercise their discontent with something). Scarborough decided to chime in saying that what these players did was the last straw for him. He went on to equate how people are embracing Mike Brown to how right wing extremists embraced Zimmerman as a hero following the death of Trayvon Martin. He then threw in conversations about the looters and rioters just for good measure to express how upset he was about how he felt Ferguson and the hands up signal (which is the universal sign of surrender) has become a way to bash police officers for the difficult job they have to do.
I just have a few things that ran through my mind when I should have been doing homework. First of all, no one has denied that police officers have a difficult job. I never heard anyone says being a police officer is easier, that being said you cannot deny that the police and the black community have a long tenuous relationship that pre-dates Mike Brown and Darren Wilson’s existence. Secondly, if you think this is just about Mike Brown you have not been paying attention. Continuing in the same train of thought, this is not just about Michael Brown anymore. Yes his family and community deserve to grieve for him but this is a systematic problem where black men are 21 times more likely to be killed in a police encounter. Yes the symbol of hands up started with Mike Brown’s death but this has become a representation of black men killed by police officers while unarmed. Tamir Rice is a new example of the institutional problem that is present in this case. By the way Mr. Scarborough whatever your rationale for mentioning what happened to Tamir Rice in your rant, because I couldn’t figure it our, there was no excuse a 12 year old should have been shot within a short time frame of officers arriving on the scene. Third, there was rioting after the announcement of no indictment. Businesses were burned down yes, Yet, you and many like you are only focusing on this. The majority of people protesting across the country were participating in civil disobedience. Yes the riots hurt the local black businesses there but you have missed Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s quote on why riots happen in the black community. Also, did you focus on riots as much when they happened in other instances where the participants were mainly white and the reasons were a lot less noble? Finally, why are we putting the victim on trial when he is dead and there will never be a case to determine how he should be tried for what allegedly occurred in the store (it will remain allegedly because there can be no trial). Mr. Scarborough, you have the privilege of being born white in this country where you can express your ideas about race and you will be supported by a large number of America, I believe your number was 95% which I doubt is fair. However, what remains is Mike Brown is dead and cannot be tried for this alleged robbery (I still would like to know what constitutes a strong armed robbery). Regardless how you feel about the entire ordeal, a family is grieving. If Mike Brown was taking in for booking, which is standard procedure for robberies, maybe we would not have this situation, plus may I remind you the Police Chief explicitly said Officer Wilson had no knowledge of the robbery when he confronted Mike Brown, which highlights another issue of lies and the cover up which are so apparent in this case. Then again the laws were not written to protect black people as we were reminded a week ago. You claim people made Mike Brown a hero which is not true. The truth is Mike Brown is typical and the campaign to discredit him is also typical and a reason black people are distrustful of the criminal justice system. People tried to rationalize Emmett Till”s death by saying black boys shouldn’t whistle/talk to white women but that doesn’t make it right that he was killed. Now I know Mr. Wilson said Mike Brown punched him but without a trial we will never get to the bottom of this (Also his injuries did not look convincing to me), instead the majority of America (Mainly the people who think like you and those who have no common sense) will accept Mr. Wilson’s inconsistencies as fact, others will not care either way, but the rest of us will not accept these so called facts.
I have to give Wes Moore credit for trying to explain what the situation was really about to Mr. Scarborough because the tension in that room was thick. The women sitting next to him could barely look at Mr. Scarborough and obviously disagreed with him to an extent as she refused to be dragged down the rabbit hole with him.