The Ferguson story is tediously familiar. Black thug attacks white person. White person uses lethal force to defend himself. A huge racial uproar follows. Things quiet down after a while. In certain segments of media and government, the dead black thug is canonized as a genuine Saint of the Holy Civil Rights Movement. White commentators, etc., are bitterly attacked for believing that the dead black thug was not any kind of saint, just the kind of stupid, useless thug that most white people would regard as a stupid, useless thug even if he were white.
Thus we have the tedious, nauseatingly self-righteous screed by Ted Strickland, former governor of Ohio, concerning the killing of Michael Brown in the town of Ferguson, Missouri. The title of the article, From Emmett Till to Michael Brown, a story as old as America itself (By Gov. Ted Strickland and Judith Browne Dianis, MSNBC.com, Aug 30, 2014) tells you much of what you need to know about it.
So far, based on what I've read in papers and on-line, this is what happened: Brown stole a box of cigars from a convenience store and shoved the much smaller clerk out of the way as he was leaving. A few minutes later he was walking in the middle of a street. A police officer told him to get off the street. He opened the car door and attacked the officer. After failing to get the officer's gun, he punched the officer in the eye and continued to walk down the street. The officer got out of the car, drew his gun and ordered Brown to halt. Brown turned around and started charging at the officer. The officer hit Brown's arm with a few shots. Brown continued charging. Then the officer shot Brown in the head and killed him.
Here is the narrative offered by Strickland and Dianis:
Eighteen-year-old Michael Brown was killed by a police officer when he was stopped for walking in the middle of a street. Witnesses say Brown put his hands up and said "Don't shoot" to Officer Darren Wilson. The police, however, have remained quiet on Wilson's version of events, choosing instead to make the victim the focus by releasing grainy video footage of the teen allegedly haranguing a store keeper over a pack of pilfered cigars.That account leaves out much detail, but it does include one point that I omitted. The security camera footage of Brown leaving the store was "grainy." I too wish security cameras were High Definition. It would make stories about black thugs robbing convenience stores much more pleasant to watch on the evening news. But seriously, the account is flat-out wrong on one point. Brown was not "haranguing" the store keeper, he was shoving the guy.
If this blog entry is your first encounter with the Ferguson story, then you don't know the facts of the story. Ultimately, neither do I, neither do Strickland and Dianis. But just by reading the two accounts above, you can tell who is at least trying to tell the truth. I am. Strickland and Dianis are not. I am willing to change my account when better information is available. Strickland and Dianis are not. If Officer Wilson is guilty of any misconduct or criminality, I want to see him punished. Strickland and Dianis want to see Wilson punished whether he is guilty or not. I have no vested interest in my account being The Truth. I think it is close, anyway, but if it isn't, I'll admit it. I'll post an addendum to this blog entry. Strickland and Dianis, like inveterate liars, will never change their account.
Their account (in all likelihood false) is what justifies all of their whining and hand-wringing:
A 2012 study revealed that police officers, security guards, or self-appointed vigilantes extra-judicially killed at least 313 African Americans that year alone. This means a black person was killed at the hands of a "security" officer every 28 hours. But these dire fates are not inevitable. They are the result of generations of suppression and inequality, devaluing the lives of African Americans to the point where we invest little in economic equality, education and the other types of policies that create opportunity in other parts of America.First, an "extra-judicial" killing is not necessarily an un-justified killing. If you are charging at me and I whip out my 9 mil and bust a cap on your ass and kill you, it would be "extra-judicial" but still totally justified. I have a right to defend myself. And if you, as a departed spirit, look down with sadness on your body while it bleeds out, hey, you should have left me alone. If you are white, no one will care. The headline, in small type, will be "White thug shot and killed while attempting thuggery against innocent citizen" and it will be followed by about two column inches of story, all below the fold on page 7C, in some local editions. If you are black you will become a great Civil Rights Hero, basking (while disembodied) in the pantheon which includes Rodney King, Tawana Brawley, Crystal Gail Mangum, Alicia Hardin and, of course, Saint Trayvon Martin.
Strickland and Dianis suggest that we Americans "invest little" in the welfare and the betterment of conditions and expansion of opportunities for black Americans. Totally false! We have spent literally (and I literally mean "literally") trillions of dollars over the last 50 years or so on those sorts of things. After all we've spent, all we've done, all we've hoped for, all we've tried, we end up with whiny little dorks like Strickland and Dianis not noticing any of it.
I wonder why a former governor and current president of a huge Democratic Party fundraising outfit wants to spend his time promulgating racially incendiary lies. His lies have an eerie similarity to the Big Lie promoted by mass media, by leftist activists and by Democrat politicians before the Los Angeles riots of 1992: That Rodney King was an innocent victim of police brutality. Strickland's lies bear a vague similarity to the lies used by the George W. Bush administration and his media allies before America's invasion of Iraq in 2003. Weapons of mass destruction, an innocent black man with his hands in the air gunned down by police. Such lies can be precursors to violence.
We white people need to notice what people like Strickland and Dianis are
up to. We need to prepare for the possibility that our cities will go up in
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