Look, I have nothing against a good old healthy protest. People get mad, come together on one cause, formulate a crowd and action, and don’t hurt anyone. The foundations of this country were built on healthy protests. Martin Luther King Jr. marched with protesters. Other groups marched for their civil rights. It’s positive and healthy. However, with the one year anniversary of Michael Brown’s death ringing in this morning, the healthy ideas will be tabled for more stupid actions. The followers, supporters and memorial candle holders of Brown and his family will probably unleash havoc on Ferguson tonight.
The word around the city is there will be loud actions and that’s unfortunate. That’s the wrong way to get your message across. When people start vandalizing property and burning cars and buildings, their purpose is lost. It’s tarnished and weak.
Think about it. You respond to an unfortunate event with reckless behavior. How is that supposed to inspire the right people to look at your cause and issue? It only makes things look worse. Records show that Brown robbed a convenience store before being justifiably gunned down by former officer Darren Wilson(who is now living in seclusion in St. Louis). We are not talking about a saint here folks. Put down the pitch forks and glass bottles. Find a better cause. Read a little. Be calm. As Brown’s own family preached during last winter’s riots, this is NOT the way to mourn their son or ask for a more fair world. It paints the whole situation black and blue.
Last year’s damage claimed several stores and buildings. Other people died. National Guard rode into town. Tear gas was fired across city streets. Things got loud and I get it. Ordinary human nature breeds this type of reaction. A year later, they can do better. We can think this time before we act. The digestion period has passed. New reports came out that Brown indeed charged Wilson and the cop had no choice. If I am in Wilson’s position and anybody, white or black, charges me, they are going down. If it takes the whole magazine in my gun, it’s happening.
The worst people in the riots are the ones who didn’t know Brown or don’t really care a lot about this event. They are basically taking this event and plugging into their own cause. It’s fuel for their beliefs. As a result, businesses are tarnished. A family man’s tire shop was burnt to a crisp last year. A man who had nothing to do with the death of Brown saw his business go to the ground in flames because people got angry. It’s savage and it’s stupid. Worst of all, it’s the wrong way to react.
Just protest. If you feel the need to voice your opinion or field your emotions, come together, march and protest. Hold up a highway. Go ahead. As long as no one gets hurt, nothing gets burned and innocent people don’t suffer due to one event, it’s all good. That is the right way.
However, this is not what will happen. People will burn things. Violence will occur. People may die. Bad people will run wild. All in the name of a young kid who made a bad decision that cost him his life but also cost Wilson his own life. The New York Magazine article painted a picture of the former officer that isn’t pretty. He’s living a sheltered life, looking over his shoulder and he can’t find work. All due to him doing his job. His life is pretty much ruined.
Due to one event, violence will happen every year because that’s the norm for our species. React instead of think. Resort to violence instead of thought. Hurt instead of reason with. It’ll never change and therefore, the world will never change. A sad old tireless truth that will be on fine display this week.