WASHINGTON, August 16, 2014 – In Ferguson, things are not as they appear and due process must be allowed to take its place without media speculation defining the narrative. We can’t jump to conclusion and vindicate or condemn the officer who shot Michael Brown not knowing the facts.
On Friday the Ferguson Police Department released video depicting Michael Brown and his friend allegedly robbing a
Quik-Trip convenience store Ferguson Liquor Store, stealing around $40 worth of cigars and assaulting the store clerk.
All this happened just moment before Brown was approached by Officer Wilson.
While this newly released footage does not prove the shooting was justified it does show that there is much more to the story.
If it is in the realm of possibilities Brown used force in the store robbery, could he have used it against Officer Wilson? Some media reports state that Officer Wilson had no idea Brown and his friend were suspects.
Was soft-spoken Big Mike a promising young man or a powder-keg that exploded when he was approached by Office Wilson? The media should not promote one or the other.
If these reports are true could both of the suspects have believed Wilson was not just asking them to move out of the street, but instead intended to arrest them for the robbery and assaault at the Quick-Trip. Situations like these often set off our “fight or flight” instincts. Did Brown and his friend choose “fight” instead of “flight”? These questions need to be answered through due process and the rule of law, not mob rule.
While the video does not vindicate or condemn either party involved in the shooting it show’s how manipulative the media and race-baiters can be.
In the beginnings of this tragedy the media tried to paint Brown as a “gentle giant” and someone who was on his way to college. Now social media and the store video tape shows us a very different young man. And we still don’t know what the interraction between Wilson and Brown was.
They also tried to create a narrative that turned the shooting into a racial conflict. We may not know what exactly happened however we do know that there is much more to the story.
CNN has reported that the Department of Justice, under Attorney General Eric Holder, tried to pressure law enforcement not to release footage from the convenience store. Why, because it would take away from the media bias that this promising young man did “nothing but walk down the street” or because it would inflame the fires of Ferguson more?
The media has taken some criticsm, including by this writers, for bashing law enforcement and claiming that the police are “over-militarized”. It appears that the police attacks were justified as looting and violence picked up after law enforcement ratcheted back their efforts.
The looting became so bad that store owners we’re forced to defend their property, some using guns.
— Victor Blackwell CNN (@VictorCNN) August 16, 2014
Were the police going “too-far” earlier in the week or was there a serious need for their strong presence?
While there are many peaceful protesters, they are vastly overshadowed by the “few bad apples” who choose to resort to violence and looting. During the protests a store owner was forced to defend himself because the police wouldn’t get involved.
We are not sure what exactly happened the day Michael Brown was shot, that will be for the evidence and the forensics to decide.
Again if the officer involved was in the wrong he should be held fully accountable, however his and Brown’s innocence or guilt should be decided by due process not by mob rule. Or the media.