The Word from #Ferguson


What concerns me most about the impending verdict in Missouri (as well as Ohio), is not what the jury decides, but instead the effect the (in)decision to charge will have on the collective psyche of children of color across America. It is a powerful message, a searing one, to say that these young folks, we youth, we adults, can be killed without cause, without consequence, in the face of national scrutiny. If we can be slain, before a nation of our fellow citizens, without recourse, what hope are we to have in the laws that govern us? Can we expect parents to teach their young to obey laws that demand, maim and steal theirs lives as a consequence of mere existence? Shall we expect children to respect or uphold laws that seemingly only function efficiently when their elimination is the task at hand? The question for the grand jury is not whether Officer Wilson–an agent of the state–illegally killed the unarmed youth, Michael Brown, but instead whether it is proper for the question to be decided by court at all. If there are no charges tonight, if there is no green light for further investigation I fear that scores of young folks of color and concerned anti-racists will learn what I l’ve long feared to be true; that the function of law enforcement is not to bring peace to those most affected by violence and disadvantageous circumstances, but to instead control them, taunt them and when feelings permit, slay them. I also wonder what this says to/about white folks writ large…but that ain’t none of my business….

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