Michael Brown killing: Unrest in Ferguson
The other day I was working on my assignment when the #Ferguson case headline sent a chill down my spine. It was then that I decided to do a case study on the case and came across with the details mentioned in the article below.
What is the #Ferguson story all about?
#Ferguson became viral on twitter where people expressed their anger and demanded justice for an 18 year old African American male, Michael Brown, who was shot dead in cold blood on August 9th, 2014.
He was a resident of Ferguson, Missouri, United States of America and was shot six times by a police officer Darren Wilson which led to racial unrest in the whole area.
Where on one side some people blamed the social media for adding up to the tension in the case, on the other end, there were others who praised it for making the story viral. A lot of people who could never speak otherwise took to Twitter as a refuge and acted as storytellers to be done away with the baggage they carried in their minds.
Alex Byers, a print media person stated, “Social media was the kerosene that turned fire in Ferguson into a national blaze.
What it’s less likely to be: the extinguisher.”
What many of us don’t know are the two different versions of the same case which are in complete contrast with one another.
According to Joe Belmar, St. Louis County Police Chief, Michael Brown physically assaulted the police officer involved and pushed him into his car, which led to an arm struggle between the two where Brown tried to reach for Wilson’s gun. This resulted in Wilson firing a gunshot from his car and the other gunshots outside the car in self-defense.
During the investigation, the police had earlier alleged Brown of being involved in a robbery in a convenience store just before he was shot.
The other version is completely different from the first. The friend Dorian Johnson, who accompanied Brown before he was shot, along with the other eyewitnesses stated that Brown was killed while trying to surrender where he was stopped for walking in the middle of the road. The autopsy report proved that he was shot six times from the front where two bullets directly hit his head. A witness who had earlier stated that Brown tried to run away from the spot and it was then that he was shot, later changed his statement once the autopsy report was out in public.
The change in the statement further problematizes the whole case and the mystery related to it. There is no black or white side to the story here, what we come across is a complete chaos.The thing which further aroused rage in the people was the city police earlier declining to reveal the identity of the police officer involved.
If the police narrated the whole incident truly then the need to keep the identity a secret doesn’t sound right. However, the identity was later revealed on the immense pressure put on the police officials.
If Wilson wanted to stop Brown from running away and to protect himself then why did he keep shooting even when Brown had turned towards him to surrender? Leaves you speechless, right? The same happened with me too. The Missouri Governor Jay Nixon had to declare an emergency in the area, later followed by a curfew to keep the furious protesters away from any kind of violence. Some people protested in peace whereas things took a bad turn when the police officials had to use tear gas and rubber bullets to keep the crowd in control. Things seem to be in control for now, but for how long? Nobody is sure of that.The tension continues to rise in the area since there is a long history of distrust between the black community and the whites. If this case was a result of the same reason and the deep rooted racial hatred in minds of certain people, then nothing can be said of how bad things may turn out to be.
I simply wish that people understood what H.G. Wells once rightly said, “Our true nationality is mankind”. Had people understood that no race is superior to the other and the basic human rights are guaranteed to all, this world would certainly have been a better place to live in.