Things Are Blowing Up in Ferguson

Also, the autopsy was released and he was shot six times, twice in the head. The kill shot was at the top of the skull, suggesting he was on his knees as when he was killed, as witnesses stated.

FWIW:






266 replies
  1. 1
    Cervantes says:

    Here (again) is Glenn Greenwald, writing a few days ago.

    The harrowing events of the last week in Ferguson, Missouri – the fatal police shooting of an unarmed African-American teenager, Mike Brown, and the blatantly excessive and thuggish response to ensuing community protests from a police force that resembles an occupying army – have shocked the U.S. media class and millions of Americans. But none of this is aberrational.

    It is the destructive by-product of several decades of deliberate militarization of American policing, a trend that received a sustained (and ongoing) steroid injection in the form of a still-flowing, post-9/11 federal funding bonanza, all justified in the name of “homeland security.” This has resulted in a domestic police force that looks, thinks, and acts more like an invading and occupying military than a community-based force to protect the public.

    As is true for most issues of excessive and abusive policing, police militarization is overwhelmingly and disproportionately directed at minorities and poor communities, ensuring that the problem largely festers in the dark. Americans are now so accustomed to seeing police officers decked in camouflage and Robocop-style costumes, riding in armored vehicles and carrying automatic weapons first introduced during the U.S. occupation of Baghdad, that it has become normalized. But those who bear the brunt of this transformation are those who lack loud megaphones; their complaints of the inevitable and severe abuse that results have largely been met with indifference.

  2. 2
    Burnspbesq says:

    Any remaining doubt that this was premeditated murder seems to have been resolved.

  3. 3
    jheartney says:

    None of the shots are from the back, which contradicts the idea that he was shot while fleeing. OTOH the shots were not fired at close range (no gunpowder), whatever that suggests.

  4. 4
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    I do not recognize my country.

  5. 5
    A Humble Lurker says:

    @Cervantes:
    Seemed to have missed the point, this one has.

  6. 6
    Burnspbesq says:

    Greenie accusing others of paying too little attention to a 15-year-old problem that, by all appearances, he discovered about six days ago? That’s both rich and typical.

  7. 7
    AT says:

    Haven’t you heard. The shot to the top of the head was because he was ‘charging’ the officer.

    Scary scary black man.

  8. 8
    Mike in NC says:

    Execution-style cop killing. More common than you’d like to think.

  9. 9
    jheartney says:

    I’m in STL, listening to local TV coverage. Reports of shots fired (not by police) as well as a fire at a nearby supermarket. Lots of reports of opportunistic troublemakers distinct from peaceful Ferguson-based protesters. Mostly very sad that this just seems to be going on and on night after night and getting worse (trouble beginning earlier in the evening as days go by).

  10. 10
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    Don’t lets make Glenn Greenwald the issue here. Michael Brown is the issue. The police’s actions in Ferguson are the issue.

  11. 11
    Lolis says:

    I wonder which autopsy these results are from. This curfew was a horrible idea. I have no idea how this is going to end. I can easily see this officer not being charged or being acquitted. The police deliberately contaminated the jury pool with the shoplifting video. So much wrongness here.

  12. 12
    amk says:

    @Cervantes:

    But those who bear the brunt of this transformation are those who lack loud megaphones; their complaints of the inevitable and severe abuse that results have largely been met with indifference.

    Where was gigi and his megaphone on abuse of minorities all these years?

  13. 13
    jheartney says:

    @AT: If he was charging the officer, he was still a good distance away at the time of the head shot(s).

  14. 14
    Violet says:

    Mentioned in the previous thread that other countries are sending in their war correspondents to cover Ferguson.

    So crazy that @robcrilly is in Ferguson. Dude covers wars.— Blake Hounshell (@blakehounshell) August 18, 2014

  15. 15
    KG says:

    @jheartney: eye witness accounts were at least nine shots fired, only six entry wounds. Cop could have fired while Brown was running away, and with shit fired, Brown turned around

  16. 16
    jheartney says:

    @Lolis: This is from an autopsy commissioned by the Brown family. They will be holding a press conference to discuss the findings tomorrow morning.

  17. 17
    rikyrah says:

    @jheartney:

    they don’t know about close range because all this independent examiner had was the body – not the clothes, which would contain the gunpowder residue.

  18. 18
    Violet says:

    Did you hear about the rally in St. Louis tody to support the cop Darren Wilson? Sample quote from attendee:

    “If you do what the police tell you do — if you’re not doing anything wrong, and the cops ask you to do something, then you’re not going to have nothing to worry about,” said Michael Bates, 33.

    Uh huh. Sure. That’s how it works.

  19. 19
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Lolis: According to the linked article, the results are from the private autopsy. As far as the rest, I don’t blame people for cynicism right now, but there has been too much national attention for this to just go away.

  20. 20
    scav says:

    a) could we forget the fucking mirrored navel of the Internet and it’s randomly throw up typing keyboard jockeys? Pay attention to, I don’t know, actual events.

    b) from what I could gather, that examiner was being scrumptiously careful. He’s got access to no witness statements or other evidence, he’s got the body and is to present positions in which the observed wounds could be created. His jobs is not to decide which of the alternatives actually happened unless the physical evidence he has is unambiguous. If others take one or another of his statements to blow up as spurious proof, that’s their misuse, from what I understand of the process.

  21. 21
    AT says:

    @jheartney: was using the sarcasm.

  22. 22
    rikyrah says:

    @Lolis:
    the curfew was a horrible idea.

    the citizens were attacked tonight THREE HOURS BEFORE THE CURFEW WAS SUPPOSED TO BEGIN.

  23. 23
    Violet says:

    The guy who live tweeted Mike Brown’s shooting has this to say:

    I cant say much, but let my tweets show you, i never said he was shot in the back— Bruh. (@TheePharoah) August 18, 2014

  24. 24
    Groucho48 says:

    Most of the wounds seem to be in his right arm. I wonder if there is anyway of determining the position of his arms when the bullets hit. One wound appears to be on the inside of the forearm, for example. An awkward place for a bullet to hit if arms are down by his side but not so awkward if arms were up in the air.

    I also wonder how many procedure rules were broken by firing 6-9 shots at a target 25-30 feet away in a residential neighborhood?

  25. 25
    max says:

    @jheartney: None of the shots are from the back, which contradicts the idea that he was shot while fleeing. OTOH the shots were not fired at close range (no gunpowder), whatever that suggests.

    No idea if he was at close range. However, he was shot all over the right side of his body. It’s a little difficult to make out, but it looks like he got hit in the thumb, the lower arm, the upper arm twice (which may have passed through arm and hit him in the chest), once in the eye (?) and once in the top of the head. All but the head shot on the right side of the body. Unless he was 2 inches away from the cop, or the cops is very precise but very inaccurate shooter, the kid was turned to present his right side to the cop.

    I read that as him turning to run, getting hit 4-5 times and going down, and then shot in the top of the head. So that seems to me from the witness descriptions that the kid tried to get away and the cop shot the shit out of him, intending to kill.

    max
    [‘I don’t see grounds for that. That’s prima facie manslaughter at the absolute minimum. And the PD tried to cover it up.’]

  26. 26
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @rikyrah: I saw some reports that the cops reacted to firecrackers going off as though they were gunshots. No idea if there is any truth to it.

  27. 27
    rikyrah says:

    Natalie Jackson @NatJackEsq

    #MikeBrown @MSNBC Your reporter is missing the most important thing on the autopsy, 1 shot was on the right inner palm. Looks like hands up.

  28. 28
    jheartney says:

    @KG: I’d be leery of depending on eyewitnesses for for numbers of shots fired. Eyewitnesses are notoriously unreliable, particularly for numerical data.

  29. 29
    gwangung says:

    @Groucho48: Inside palm? Hands up?

  30. 30
    gwangung says:

    @jheartney: At best, one or many.

  31. 31
    Pogonip says:

    Tunch was 6′ 1″?

    I swear I can’t figure out what either the individual officer or the police chief thought they stood to gain by this sorry mess.

  32. 32
    🚸 Martin says:

    @rikyrah: Or reaching for a gun – along with the number of entry wounds on the right arm. Enough of the eyewitnesses are lining up for me to think that wasn’t what happened, but the autopsy really only tells us that the officer fired many times and didn’t shoot him in the back.

  33. 33
    jheartney says:

    @rikyrah: I don’t think that’s a fair description of what happened. I saw it on TV as it happened, and saw reporters on the scene asking police why they moved in. Reports of gunfire from the protesters, a brick through the window of the McDonalds, and landscaping bricks removed and thrown at the police line. The crowds were reportedly very large and unruly. I don’t believe police just took it on themselves to sweep the street for no reason.

  34. 34
    different-church-lady says:

    Unfortunately I’ve reached the point with this where I just assume everyone on both sides is hiding the parts of the truth they don’t like and the only thing that has any veracity in this world is the cocktail I’m holding.

    World is fucked up and nobody is ever going to do anything about it because everyone is more interested in proving their biases right than doing something about it.

  35. 35
    scav says:

    @Groucho48: Regulations about gunplay in neighborhoods? Gunplay by cops?! “frightened” cops? The nearby article at the NYT on Arizona Loose With Its Rules in Executions, Records Show makes for sobering reading sidenote when considering law enforcement following regulations.

  36. 36
    Groucho48 says:

    @gwangung:

    That, too. That could be a defensive wound, though. Putting your hands up to block bullets is a pretty automatic action.

  37. 37
    Betty Cracker says:

    @different-church-lady: I have reluctantly reached the same conclusion. ETA: Only without the cocktail.

  38. 38
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    It’s perfectly plausible to me that there were more shots fired than actually hit Brown. It’s not at all uncommon. If witnesses were saying there were fewer shots fired than there were wounds on Brown’s body, that would be weird.

  39. 39
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @🚸 Martin:

    Or reaching for a gun – along with the number of entry wounds on the right arm.

    If you are suggesting a possibility that the cop deliberately shot Michael Brown in the arm, you can forget it. People aren’t that good with pistols.

  40. 40
    KG says:

    @jheartney: well, we should be able to figure out how many shots were fired by checking the cop’s gun/clip. Also, while one eye witness may not be reliable, if multiple witness report the same fact, it is more reliable.

  41. 41
    gwangung says:

    @🚸 Martin:

    Or reaching for a gun – along with the number of entry wounds on the right arm.

    Hm. Facing the shooter, inner arm wounds are hard to do with the arms at side

    Much easier to see it happening if the arms are above head.

  42. 42
    jheartney says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): That’s true, there are also reports of fireworks being set off. If we didn’t live in a country awash in private firearms, it wouldn’t be necessary for police to assume loud bangs are gunfire.

  43. 43
    gwangung says:

    @Groucho48: Or….”My hands are up! Don’t shoot!”

  44. 44
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    No, Glenn, it goes back a bit further than 15 years. Or 34 years.

    The second sin of America was race based slavery, the first sin being simply stealing the land from the indigenous peoples.

    Think about this the next time you express support for racist scum like the Pauls, ummkay?

  45. 45
    jheartney says:

    @KG: Also, a properly handled crime scene ought to have spent shell casings found and counted. No idea if that happened.

  46. 46
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Violet: Another example of a privileged white imposing his perception on a black kid.

    It doesn’t work that way for blacks, sorry.

  47. 47
    gwangung says:

    @jheartney:

    Also, a properly handled crime scene ought to have spent shell casings found and counted. No idea if that happened.

    Bet a $50 that never happened.

  48. 48
    Plantsmantx says:

    @jheartney:
    There’s supposed to be a midnight curfew, but the security forces started rioting well before it.

  49. 49
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): That’s actually plausible…particularly if they were vets.

  50. 50
    Groucho48 says:

    @scav:

    Came across the Missouri policy:

    3. A law enforcement officer in effecting an arrest or in preventing an escape from custody is justified in using deadly force only

    (1) When such is authorized under other sections of this chapter; or

    (2) When he reasonably believes that such use of deadly force is immediately necessary to effect the arrest and also reasonably believes that the person to be arrested

    (a) Has committed or attempted to commit a felony; or

    (b) Is attempting to escape by use of a deadly weapon; or

    (c) May otherwise endanger life or inflict serious physical injury unless arrested without delay.

    4. The defendant shall have the burden of injecting the issue of justification under this section.

    That seems awfully broad. It could also be why the police chief had to come back and make the point that the cop was aware of the shoplifting incident after saying he wasn’t. Though, I’m not sure that shoplifting a pack of cigars and brushing by a clerk rises to the level of a felony. Unless there were extenuating circumstances, of course. Like being black.

  51. 51
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Groucho48:

    Unless there were extenuating circumstances, of course. Like being black.

    Yup. “Walking while blah” was, that night, apparently a capital offense in Ferguson, MO.

  52. 52
    jheartney says:

    @Plantsmantx: Having watched it happening on TV, I don’t think that’s a fair characterization.

  53. 53
    Ruckus says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:
    Reposting this from the last thread.
    Unfortunately I do recognize my country. This shit has been going on my entire life and I’m pretty close to you in years. We are just seeing more of it because of the digital world. And the militarization just makes it easier for the cops to be assholes.
    This is our country. It was our country in 65 in LA, in 67 in Detroit, and on and on, and it is every year in the confederacy. You say that was abolished 150 yrs ago? In name only it was.
    People say there are good cops. What happened to the highway patrol capt that was in charge? Did they replace him? Did he just get pushed out of the way? Isn’t it time for the president to declare an emergency and just take over? The governor obviously is useless, what other choice is there? The MO national guard?
    Then Violet answered my question about the HP capt, Johnson was out arresting reporters.
    So this was my answer to that.
    So the one “good” cop there has given in and is doing that fat blue line a solid?
    Yep this is our country. I see it clearly now. This is who we are. FUCK.

  54. 54
    Dwayne says:

    I think we should all wait for the full autopsy report. This is only a fragment of information and we really cannot conclusively say what happened.

    What still boggles my mind is where the hell is the incident report from the night of the shooting??? It’s been well over a week and still nothing from the Ferguson PD. What possible reason could there be for withholding this information (other than tampering w/evidence and getting stories straight)?

    This whole thing stinks to high heaven. Glad the FBI is on the ground now…I hope they aren’t too late.

  55. 55
    scav says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: I was about to mention to @Groucho48: the precedent of being armed with a public thoroughfare in a manner not judged appropriate by guy with gun.

  56. 56
    Skerry says:

    @gwangung: one witness did speak to a bullet dug out of a nearby apartment building wall.

  57. 57
    gwangung says:

    @Skerry: Ah, but were they cataloged…..

    I dunno….it just seems that whole police scene there is totally lackadaisical and incompetent.

  58. 58
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    I’m not sure you got a very clear view from your TV — the police have been blocking journalists from the protests and even arrested a few reporters.

  59. 59
    rikyrah says:

    Greg Mitchell @GregMitch

    Love TV guests/hosts saying autopsy report doesn’t tell us much new. Except that it sustains all witness accounts. No big deal?

  60. 60
    Mnemosyne says:

    @gwangung:

    I dunno….it just seems that whole police scene there is totally lackadaisical and incompetent.

    As someone else pointed out today, they only seem lackadaisical and incompetent if you assume their purpose was to try and properly investigate the crime. If their purpose was to try and cover it up, tamper with the evidence, and try Brown in the media in order to taint the jury pool, they’ve done a damn fine job so far.

  61. 61
    gwangung says:

    @rikyrah: But is it consistent with the police rep–

    Oh. Wait.

  62. 62
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @scav: Could have been worse. He might have been carrying skittles.

  63. 63
    rikyrah says:

    I’ll ask again:

    WHERE IS THE GOVERNOR?

  64. 64
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne: Local TV was a couple dozen feet from the police line as it went through. They’ve been doing constant live shots on location the whole time.

  65. 65
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Mnemosyne: I agree. This entire incident was handled to muddy the waters as much as possible about a pretty clear-cut crime by Darren Wilson.

    Gotta create that “reasonable doubt”, especially if proper procedure might work against its creation.

  66. 66
    different-church-lady says:

    @jheartney: That’s part of what’s getting to the heart of my despair over this. At first it seemed so obvious that the police were overreacting in a crystal-clear example of systemic racism. But then I went and got some info outside of the liberal blogsphere filter that seemed to indicate that the flashpoint for the SWAT-type action was in one particular place where rioting had taken place.

    It’s been very difficult for me to try to articulate what’s got me upset about this. I can’t trust people on my own side anymore. I know that kid should not be dead, and I know systemic racism played a part. But I feel like everything else my own side has been feeding me is untrustworthy.

    Which completely sucks, because I really thought this was the time we were going to address it, because it was too clear to ignore. And now we’re not going to, because there’s too much bullshit to claw through.

  67. 67
    🚸 Martin says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): No, I’m saying when someone reaches for a gun, the victim is putting themselves into the path of the bullet. No need for the shooter to aim. Note:

    Dr. Baden provided a diagram of the entry wounds, and noted that the six shots produced numerous wounds. Some of the bullets entered and exited several times, including one that left at least five different wounds.

    Brown was hit 6 times, 4 in the arm, 2 in the head. One of the head shots is described as causing multiple wounds. It suggests that at least some of the shots in the arm entered and exited multiple times. If he was arms up, I think it’s unlikely that they would have exited his arms and struck him elsewhere. The marking on the diagram shows the shot in the hand as being a long wound – probably hitting at a shallow angle. That’s less likely to be hands up, and more likely to be arm outreached. One of the shots went into his chest and that looks like it was the upper arm shot or the hand shot. I’ll note that it’s a normal autonomous reaction to put you hand out in front of you to block something you think is going to hit you – even a bullet.

    Like I said, it doesn’t sound like there was a struggle for the gun, but I don’t believe most of these shots were while arms were up. After all, if he was reaching for a gun, there’d be gunpowder on his hand, and the autopsy could have found that but didn’t, so it sounds like he was at least some distance away. Same with the shots to his head – they must have been at some distance.

    We need a lot more information.

  68. 68
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    Right, that’s my point — the journalists are being confined to the police lines. You’re not seeing what’s going on across the street with the protesters, and the police are preventing journalists from going over there.

    Basically, you’re getting the “shock and awe” version of what’s going on, which is about as accurate as the Iraq War coverage was with “embedded reporters” telling us everything from the military’s point of view.

    You’re getting the police’s version of what’s going on. Don’t think for a minute you’re getting the whole story.

  69. 69
    Mnemosyne says:

    @different-church-lady:

    But then I went and got some info outside of the liberal blogsphere filter that seemed to indicate that the flashpoint for the SWAT-type action was in one particular place where rioting had taken place.

    Link?

  70. 70
    jheartney says:

    With curfew just going into effect now, there are a “handful” of people defying the curfew, with a massive police presence moving in on them. Current reports are that of those arrested so far, few actually live in Ferguson, which goes along with the “outside agitators” narrative. Looting and a fire reported at Dellwood Market (municipality adjacent to Ferguson).

  71. 71
    Unabogie says:

    @rikyrah:
    Exactly, right? I’m totally gobsmacked by the reaction to this. It seems to back up the witnesses.

  72. 72
    sharl says:

    For those interested in following real time via twitter, a reporter for Poynter has put together a list of 124* reporters covering or broadcasting news from Ferguson (*she’s still tweaking the list, so that number will change):
    https://twitter.com/kristenhare/lists/stl-journalists

    Note that “reporters” includes not just professional journalists, but locals who have been providing good information to date (e.g, Antonio French).

    Someone noted that war correspondents are arriving at the scene, like Rob Crilly of The Telegraph (UK). Now there’s this:

    Amnesty New Zealand ‏{at}AmnestyNZ

    The situation in #Ferguson has prompted us to send human rights teams. First time we’ve deployed inside the US. http://bzfd.it/1mZtFSN

    Retweets 2,898………..Favorites 687
    12:38 AM – 18 Aug 2014

    Finally, some protestor took a moment to review the performance of outsider journalists, primarily based on degree of fearlessness. He gave the highest marks to Russian reporters, with those from UK and Al Jazeera also getting favorable reviews.

  73. 73
    Anya says:

    The most troubling thing about the discussions of the shooting is the acceptance that the police is justified to shoot someone unless the person has never done anything wrong in his/her life (not even a parking ticket), was an A student with a clean attendance record and volunteered at homeless shelters. I don’t understand why it matters whether Brown shoplifted or not.

    I am honesly avoiding the news these days because everything is so depressing. It’s like we’re having a collective nervous breakdown.

  74. 74
    CaseyL says:

    What’s happening in Ferguson is an obscenity. It doesn’t just remind me of the Jim Crow South and the police actions against civil rights and anti-war protestors during the 1960s-1970s; it also reminds me of Iraq from 2003 on, when the US presence was so much a causative factor of the chaos and bloodshed.

    If the US law enforcement apparatus is anything more than state-sanctioned brutishness aimed at the powerless… if the US government is anything more than a shill for the 1%… this would be a good time to let us know. Because it sure as fuck doesn’t look like it right now.

  75. 75
    Plantsmantx says:

    @jheartney:
    Why not?

  76. 76
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @rikyrah: @Unabogie: I would have been surprised if it didn’t support the eyewitness statements.

  77. 77
    beth says:

    @🚸 Martin: Didn’t Dorian Johnson say Michael Brown got hit by the shot fired from inside the car? I could have sworn he said he did and that he turned and ran after that. Wouldn’t there be residue on him from that shot or would it all land on his clothes?

    Does anyone think Wilson can ever go back to being a cop in Ferguson or anywhere else after this even if he’s acquitted of any charges brought against him? I can see people putting up their hands and chanting Hands Up Don’t Shoot every time he walks into a public place. And how could he possibly answer any calls in that (or any predominantly black) neighborhood again? I don’t think he’ll be convicted of anything but I do believe the police department will find a way to relieve him of his position.

  78. 78
    different-church-lady says:

    @Mnemosyne: Hard for me to provide a specific link in the moment — it was stuff I was reading on the St. Louis Post Dispatch website. Which is not exactly the most comprehensive reporting. I can try, in my addled state, to dig it up.

    I ain’t saying I trust them. I’m saying I’ve stopped trusting that anyone is giving me a complete picture or being honest about what they know vs. what they merely think. Especially people here.

  79. 79
    Felanius Kootea says:

    @jheartney: I heard (from twitter) that the cops mistook firecrackers for shots fired. Don’t know how accurate that is.

    If the point is to make an arrest, are officers trained to shoot to disable (legs, etc.) or is it always shoot to kill (shots to the head)? I’m trying to figure out what the police training is. On a residential street in broad daylight with the target not shooting back is there any consideration for stray police bullets that could hit residents? The whole thing makes no sense.

  80. 80
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    Also, too — a huge part of my cynicism here is because I was in Los Angeles during the 1992 riots watching it on TV and, believe me, the story that the media constructed afterwards did not match up with the reality I saw with my own eyes from roaming reporters on the street. When yeshiva boys are doing their share of the looting, it’s hard to argue that it was just black people doing the rioting. But that all got glossed over when it was all done.

  81. 81
    Suffern ACE says:

    @sharl: I also can’t believe how willing reporters were to stand in a cage. I shouldn’t be, but I am. They’ve all been detained and none of them thought – hey, I don’t have to be in this cage?

  82. 82
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne: I’m watching local TV coverage, which is not linkable. I did see the people from the McDonalds clearing out once the police had cleared the surrounding area; they were inside when the windows were broken, and took refuge at the back of the store and called 911. They were only able to leave once the surrounding area was secured.

    This simple binary of evil police and peaceful protesters really isn’t sustainable if you actually look at the situation.

  83. 83
    Suzanne says:

    I haven’t been commenting much on these Ferguson threads, because everyone, especially Rikyrah, has been saying everything I have been thinking, and no one needs me saying “TRUTH” yet again.

    But I am just so fucking horrified by this bullshit. This is so literally a war waged on American citizens, BY AMERICAN CITIZENS. I am just so sad about this, because this diminishes this country and every citizen’s worth. Every crime committed by the government is a reflection of society’s failure. Lord.

    Not that it matters, but my last interaction with police was also disappointing: I was driving down one of the freeways in Phoenix, when I saw a woman climbing over the barrier on one of the overpasses. I called 911 and described the situation. The dispatcher was such an idiot that she couldn’t figure out where I had identified the situation, despite me telling her which freeway, which overpass, and which direction. She sent the cop car to the wrong place, told me that no one was there, and didn’t believe me until other people started calling in. She kept asking me where it was, because she very clearly didn’t know the Phoenix freeway map. I never found out if they were able to stop the woman, or if she was okay. God.

  84. 84
    Mnemosyne says:

    @different-church-lady:

    That’s always the trouble with situations like this — remember how the Superdome in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina was a hellhole where women were being constantly raped, except that it never happened? Remember how people trying to evacuate from New Orleans were shot down in the street based on rumors of violence and looting?

    As I mentioned above, I’ve been in a city with widespread rioting. Ferguson ain’t even a blip on the same radar. Seriously, two burned convenience stores and a rock through the window of McDonald’s is proof positive of widespread rioting?

  85. 85
    beth says:

    @Suffern ACE: I believe the words used by Chris Hayes were that the police were on a “hair trigger”. If you had someone pointing an assault rifle in your face, telling you to stand in a particular place and one of those people had just gunned down an unarmed teen in broad daylight, wouldn’t you be a trifle afraid to rock the boat? I guess we should be glad they started intimidating journalists otherwise the media would be on to covering other important stories like the anniversary of Elvis’ death.

  86. 86
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Ruckus:

    Yes, you are right. For me to say “I don’t recognize my country” was lazy, a laziness born of fatigue and despair. You are right, I do recognize my country, and I feel worse than ever.

  87. 87
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    This simple binary of evil police and peaceful protesters really isn’t sustainable if you actually look at the situation.

    Neither is the simple binary of heroic police and evil rioters, which is what you seem to be buying into.

  88. 88
    Fair Economist says:

    @gwangung:

    I dunno….it just seems that whole police scene there is totally lackadaisical and incompetent.

    Nothing of the sort. Multiple shots to the inside of the arm followed by a kill shot to the head from above clearly show this was an execution killing while Brown was trying to surrender. The rest of the department are conspirators trying to cover up the murder, starting with refusing to allow CPR to make sure Brown could never tell his side of the story, and continuing with sequestering the body, not providing written reports for nearly a week, and spiriting the murderer out of town. They’re actually fairly good at it, considering how blatant the original abuse was and how much attention this has gotten.

  89. 89
    James E. Powell says:

    @AT:

    Haven’t you heard. The shot to the top of the head was because he was ‘charging’ the officer.

    Right. After taking five bullets, one of them in the eye.

    But it’s propaganda. The right-wingers are just being told what to say.

  90. 90
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne: I imagine that was a larger situation than what we have here, which is happening along a few blocks of a small municipality. I think you can get a pretty good sense of it from the HD cameras set up along the route.

  91. 91
    Ruckus says:

    @Felanius Kootea:

    The whole thing makes no sense.

    An absolutely, 100% true statement of the entire fucking mess.

  92. 92
    sharl says:

    @Suffern ACE: Yeah… at least some of those US reporters were following orders from their editors/publishers (e.g., Matt Pearce of LA Times). Not saying that’s right/proper journalism, but that puts them in a bind. And Russians are certainly a tough lot, but being able to honestly report on America being bad to an appreciative home audience had to be a sweet, sweet inducement for diving right in to the mess. Brit and Al Jazeera reporters – many of the latter once with UK media organizations – are also a tough lot, and many are already battle-hardened by prior postings in war-torn areas of the world.

  93. 93
    Felanius Kootea says:

    @Anya: I know. There are situations like the James Holmes shooting in Colorado where the suspect had mowed down 12 people and injured 70 but was still escorted into a police car, not shot to death. Again, I wonder about police training in different parts of the US.

  94. 94
    goblue72 says:

    @Mnemosyne: This is America. Not some Third World country. In America, we beat and shoot our poors WITHOUT having Amnesty International over our shoulders as an eyewitness.

    I have absolutely no doubt that on the other side of that police line away from the cameras, that the Ferguson police are having a field day violating the civil rights over everyone within reach of a nightstick or a tear gas cannister. Its what the pigs do.

    Buddy of mine got tossed into the back of a paddy wagon and locked in a mass arrest cage along the Hudson – Pier 57 (aka Guantanamo on the Hudson) during the GOP Convention in NYC 2004 for the audicity of bicycling down the street while Republicans were in town. Of the 1800 arrested during that week, 90% of all charges were dropped. His lawsuit is still winding its way.

    This is what we do in America. The War Pig must be fed.

  95. 95
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne: I’m doing no such thing. I’m just describing what I’m seeing.

    The local Ferguson PD has been spectacularly incompetent in the early stages, and continued to be incompetent with not releasing autopsy results, and with the shoplifting/pushing video, which just inflamed the situation. But they’re not the ones doing this large operation. This is highway patrol, STL County police, and lots of municipal officers. There’s been looting and a store burned down, and apparently shootings and gunfire. They had to respond to restore order.

  96. 96
    🚸 Martin says:

    @beth: I believe he did say that. Problem is that Michael was wearing short sleeves per the store video, and it looks like the only wound that would have hit clothing was the one in the upper arm. In that case much would be on the clothing, but probably not all unless the shot was almost point-blank. GSR only travels about 5′ and it spreads out with distance. The family’s ME didn’t find any residue. It’s possible it all landed on his clothing, but that seems unlikely based on where Michael was shot.

    Michael could have been a bit farther than that and that would explain the lack of GSR. That would also further argue against there being a struggle.

  97. 97
    amk says:

    To protect one killer they will destroy a whole city. #Ferguson

  98. 98
    different-church-lady says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Seriously, two burned convenience stores and a rock through the window of McDonald’s is proof positive of widespread rioting?

    I’m thinking this is actually a good example of how it plays both ways. If you buy one narrative, then there’s rioting all over the city. If you buy another narrative, there’s SWAT teams cracking down on peaceful protestors all over the city.

    Near as I can tell from reading things OUTSIDE of political blogs, everything’s happening on West Florissant Avenue. That’s where the army-cops are. That’s where the looting happened. That’s where the protestors are in the daytime. That’s where the tear gas is going off. There’s a battlefront in that spot, and everyone’s extrapolating.

    Do I know this for a fact? No. That’s part of the problem. I no longer trust that I know anything for a fact. Other than the kid shouldn’t be dead.

  99. 99
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Felanius Kootea: Well, this one is easy. James Holmes doesn’t have a melanin surplus.

  100. 100
    gwangung says:

    @jheartney:

    I’m doing no such thing. I’m just describing what I’m seeing.

    What you see is controlled by what you think, though.

    For example, you’re treating the non-police as a single unit. We know that there are at least several components there, though. One is Ferguson residents. One is outside opportunists using the cover of protests to commit crimes. There is apparently a provocateur element trying to incite violence between the various factions.

    This is obvious from the various reports, yet your analysis seems to treat the non-police units as monolithic.

  101. 101
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    I will try this one more time, even though I know it’s not getting through to you:

    The police are preventing reporters from covering the story.
    This fact is widely known and has been reported extensively over the past week (see my link above as well as links from other people).
    What you are seeing on your television is the approved police version.
    If you’re only watching local news, you are getting only one side of the story.
    Don’t believe everything you see.

  102. 102
    goblue72 says:

    @Mnemosyne: Me too. And this stuff is penny ante B.S. being whipped up into a mirage of “riot” in order to provide cover for the cops to keep doing their thing. And far too many white people are willing to give the benefit of the doubt to where it hasn’t been earned for over 400 years.

    White people have a problem in this country – and it ain’t just the obvious right-wing frothing at the mouth ones.

  103. 103
    scav says:

    @different-church-lady: Um, you are aware that this is a conglomeration of random people distributed across a chunk of the globe, probably none, essentially zeropointnotmany, of us with first-hand experience of the events in question, especially of the precipitating events. Of course we’re giving our filtered and understood descriptions of events. (Eyewitnesses give biased accounts and fragmentary evidence for that matter.) And, if you’re using “sides” “yours” or “other” as a cheap and easy proxy for determining relatable source of information, of course that doesn’t work. Everything that is said to you probably needs to go through the internal bullshit and logic detector all the time, although you can dial the degree down for specific individual sources after time and personal experience. But this search for the ideal source of perfectly unbiased information that all you have to do is effortlessly ingest is a myth.

    Thing that struck me during the LA riots was the gangs of fat men toting guns protecting their hoods, only totally legitimate as they had the little lizard and puma gang signs on their twill shirts. Sometimes the dreaded polo poly.

  104. 104
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @jheartney:

    The local Ferguson PD has been spectacularly incompetent in the early stages, and continued to be incompetent with not releasing autopsy results,

    Spectacularly incompetent, or well aware that one of them had committed the ultimate crime and they immediately began to work to muddy the waters to create enough “reasonable doubt” that he might not be punished for his crime.

    They’re willing to be seen as incompetent if the murderer Darren Wilson goes free. After all, he didn’t kill a human being, you know. He killed an animal. No harm, no foul, amiright?

  105. 105
    Ruckus says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:
    That’s OK, your message was fine. You clearly made your point. I just wanted to say the same thing the opposite way. It is, can tiring be the right word? That sounds like I took a long walk and need a nap. What else I wanted to get across was that this is nothing new. This is an ongoing thing in this country.

    Racism is at the base of all of it. Every last bit of it. I’d say this country is at a crossroads here. Our history is catching up with us. Only one problem with that line of bullshit. We’ve been at this crossroad before and we’ve always just swept the issue away and moved on down the same road, with the same problems. Old saying “Same shit, different day” That’s how we handle racism in this country. By not doing a fucking thing to change it.

  106. 106
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    From Al-Jazeera America:

    But as the curfew deadline arrived early Sunday, remaining protesters refused to leave the area as officers spoke through a loudspeaker: “You are in violation of a state-imposed curfew. You must disperse immediately.”

    As officers put on gas masks, a chant from the distant crowd emerged: “We have the right to assemble peacefully.”

    Shortly after, police began firing canisters into the crowd. Highway Patrol Spokesman Lt. John Hotz initially said police only used smoke, but later told The Associated Press they had also used tear gas canisters.

    The cops didn’t start using tear gas on rioters. They used it on nonviolent protesters who the police felt didn’t disperse fast enough once the police decided to start the curfew early. So at this point I think it’s pretty fair to say the police started this round.

  107. 107
    beth says:

    I’ve seen reports that there was a pro-Darren Wilson rally today somewhere but I didn’t see anything outside of a few photos of protesters. I wonder what the police presence there was like? Do you suppose they rolled up in a tank and pointed sniper rifles at the white people? Funny how there’s been no news coverage of that.

  108. 108
    skerry says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    Hey, you know something people? I’m not black, but there’s a whole lots a times I wish I could say I’m not white. Frank Zappa

  109. 109
    GregB says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Yep, I remember there were people reporting that cannibalism was occurring in New Orleans.

    Also, the sloppiness of the media when they would report gunfire as sniper fire. Sniper fire is a really specific type of gunfire and I can bet that there weren’t any snipers on the streets of New Orleans. Yet it was all reported breathlessly.

    By the way, can anyone offhand remember how many died in Katrina? That statistic was literally buried.

  110. 110
  111. 111
    jheartney says:

    @gwangung:

    For example, you’re treating the non-police as a single unit. We know that there are at least several components there, though. One is Ferguson residents. One is outside opportunists using the cover of protests to commit crimes. There is apparently a provocateur element trying to incite violence between the various factions.

    From my earlier comment:

    Current reports are that of those arrested so far, few actually live in Ferguson, which goes along with the “outside agitators” narrative

  112. 112
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne: Interesting that you can critique this coverage that you’re not actually watching.

  113. 113
    scav says:

    @beth: Here’s something on it, or at least one rally in St. Louis from the Guard

  114. 114
    skerry says:

    @beth: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/....._hp_ref=tw were about 125 people (one black guy – local Republican) and 11 police (5 on bikes).

    Noel Jackson ‏@noeljackson 7h
    #DemilitarizeBicycles MT @aterkel @jonswaine 11 officers policing rally in support of Darren Wilson, five on bicycles pic.twitter.com/YlILQobz0c

    ETA: Well, that link in the twitter block quote didn’t work, but you can check twitter to see pics. Search Darren Wilson Rally

    ETA2: FYWP. Other link is being weird too. Going to bed now

  115. 115
    gwangung says:

    @jheartney: Then why are you complaining about binary coverage when you and I are extracting the fact that this is a multiple player scenario?

  116. 116
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    So your local news did show the police firing tear gas at protesters who were chanting, “We have the right to assemble peacefully,” or they did not show it?

  117. 117
    different-church-lady says:

    @scav: Right. And I’m taking this kind of hard because I thought my BS detector was a bit more tuned. And it failed me on something important.

    And this comment probably won’t make much sense the way I’m saying it right now, but it’s feeling like honest participation is impossible, because everyone’s more interested in the BS than the fix. Like I need to just go away from the world and do some gardening, because at least the tomatoes aren’t trying to hand me a line.

  118. 118
    SatanicPanic says:

    @different-church-lady:

    there’s too much bullshit to claw through.

    That was going to be the case regardless of what some blogs said

  119. 119
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne: It showed the people escaping the McDonalds where they had to hide in the back of the store when a brick came through the window before the police sweep happened. Or the local news crew hiding behind an SUV as bullets were flying. BTW, if you want to argue that the curfew isn’t justified, you might want to take it up with Martin Luther King III, who agreed that in the current emergency that it is.

  120. 120
    fleeting expletive says:

    Four bad things have happened tonight, or lately. This Mess in Missouri, Robin Williams, my car battery is dead, and my house has somehow been infested with flies. I’ve worn out my flyswatter and I haven’t opened a door in two days, but I’ve killed 25 flies in the last two days. Sometimes shit just wears me out. Robin’s death hit me hard. And Ferguson—Man, will we never get this shit right?

  121. 121
    Ruckus says:

    @jheartney:
    How many of those arrested who don’t live there are reporters? Police building up their stats a bit maybe? “We’ve arrested 200 people, 80% of them don’t live in Ferguson.” Of course they may have arrested 100 reporters twice, or heaven forbid just lied about it. That’s not a real quote of course, just an example of the type of thing that sounds bad but isn’t and can be made up in 2 seconds with no way to verify. These cops have not one bit of believability. Don’t be fooled by what they provide to the media.

  122. 122
    Mnemosyne says:

    @different-church-lady:

    I guess I’m still not getting where you think your BS detector failed you. As far as I can tell the “rioting” seems to have consisted of a few stores being looted and a rock being thrown through the window of the McDonald’s, plus noises that have been variously described as either gunfire or fireworks, but no one seems to know for sure. Nothing that I’ve seen reported so far seems to justify a massive police response with body armor, machine guns, tear gas, and rubber or wooden bullets fired into crowds of protesters.

  123. 123
    Felanius Kootea says:

    @different-church-lady: What is the fix? What can commenters on BJ do to prevent another unarmed black man from being shot dead from your point of view? The first case I was aware of was Amadou Diallo, shot 41 times by police officers in New York for reaching for his wallet. That was 1999. There have been other similar shootings since (e.g., Sean Bell, killed the morning before his wedding in 2006). I remember outrage that died and then things went back to “normal.” The international scrutiny in the Ferguson case is the only thing that feels different this time around. Not sure how much of a difference it will make.

  124. 124
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    You didn’t answer the question: was that information from Al-Jazeera America about police firing tear gas at protesters early this morning new to you, or was it reported on your local news?

  125. 125
    jheartney says:

    @gwangung: I wasn’t complaining about binary coverage. I was saying simple binary interpretations aren’t realistic. I agree that both police and protesters have done good and bad things and that the protesters are a heterogenous group.

  126. 126
    different-church-lady says:

    @SatanicPanic: Well, I think you just helped me put my finger on it. Way back during the days of W’s Mad Iraq Adventure I started using the blogs to help me feel sane in a world that seemed to be going insane.

    And now I’m finally coming around to the knowledge that faith was misplaced.

    I’m a little old to have significant disillusionment be part of my days, but I guess one never really runs entirely out of naivety.

    It was nice to believe that my allies were telling me the truth. Guess I’ll have to figure something else out now.

  127. 127
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne: Local news wasn’t talking about Sunday morning, they were covering Sunday evening. Why are you bringing up a separate incident?

  128. 128
    MattR says:

    @Mnemosyne: Are you two talking about the same night? The article you linked to described what happened on Saturday night/Sunday morning while I think jheartney is talking about the events of tonight (Sunday night/Monday morning).

  129. 129
    Mnemosyne says:

    @different-church-lady:

    I’m still not getting what you think people lied to you about. You made a vague mention of something you think you read on a St. Louis website, but you don’t have a link to it, or to anything else that you think people are lying about. Can you be more specific in your accusations?

    That videotape of Brown supposedly stealing cigarillos from a store? It looks as though it’s possible that the cops cut the part where he paid for the “stolen” merchandise.

  130. 130
    Goblue72 says:

    @scav: Those were legitimate citizens protecting their property rights via their Second Amendment remedies.

  131. 131
    Goblue72 says:

    @skerry: I feel like Zappa did probably several times a week. On the bus, at the grocery store, at work, at the bar, walking down the street…

  132. 132
    Jordan Rules says:

    @different-church-lady: How have the blogs you kinda thought were allies made you feel insane, or more so than thru the Dubya occupation, over this?

  133. 133
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    a few stores being looted and a rock being thrown through the window of the McDonald’s, plus noises that have been variously described as either gunfire or fireworks

    You left out the large, angry crowd, after dark in what’s usually a quiet residential neighborhood, and the fire set at a local market. Maybe it would concern you more if it happened in your town. Around these parts it qualifies as a major disturbance.

  134. 134
    Mnemosyne says:

    @MattR:

    Here’s the headline from the local St. Louis NBC station from tonight:

    Peaceful Protest in Ferguson Deteriorates

    Here’s the BBC’s version of tonight’s events. Again, the report is that police used tear gas and other weapons to break up a peaceful protest. So it’s actually looking as though the police have done this two nights in a row, unless the St. Louis NBC station and the BBC both waited until 10:00 pm Central time to file a report about something that happened the night before.

    That’s why I keep asking jheartney if he’s seen these reports, or if he’s only seen the reports from the police command station in Ferguson.

  135. 135
    sharl says:

    Meanwhile…

    Kelsey Proud ‏{at}KelseyProud

    So there was also a Katy Perry concert tonight in #STL.
    1:50 AM – 18 Aug 2014

    FYI, Ms. Proud has been tweeting out the same horrible stuff as everyone else, so this is a nice “irony break” rather than situational cluelessness on her part. Well done, Kelsey!

    ETA: Umm, oh my! (“Crazy Fun!!”??)

  136. 136
    Groucho48 says:

    @Felanius Kootea:

    One thing I’d like to see done, and would chip in a bit of cash for, is to have a massive voter registration and get out the vote drive in Ferguson. Seems like a natural thing in a town two-thirds black but with a vast majority of white elected officials in every area.

    Residency requirements for cops might be a good thing, too. A local suburb of Buffalo has used strict residency requirements to even apply for a job on the police force for decades to keep blacks off the force. Seems only fair to use that tool to get more black folks on the police force.

  137. 137
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    You left out the large, angry crowd, after dark in what’s usually a quiet residential neighborhood.

    Yes, I can’t imagine why that large, angry crowd keeps getting angrier every time the police tear-gas them for peacefully protesting.

    ETA: I”m not saying it’s not a big deal for you locally. I’m saying that firing tear gas at people trying to peacefully protest is pretty much guaranteed to make them angry, so maybe the police should come up with a better idea.

  138. 138
    Goblue72 says:

    @jheartney: Having lived in a city where this kind of stuff occasionally happens – no, I don’t think it warrants this kind of tear gas & rubber bulkets first, questions later response, just because a few people happen to piss their pants.

    Chemical weapons are not the only tactical option available to the cops.

  139. 139
    scav says:

    @different-church-lady: why are you apparently expecting people NOT to have a take on this situation? Or, are you conflating a few different meanings of BS? BS is most characteristically and deeply indifference to truth, especially indifference and manipulation of truth to specific ends. We’re still in the chaos and discovery phase, with more information coming at us from all sides, no way do I see it as reasonable to expect people not to be necessarily filtering it into a coherent subset as they try to understand what’s going on and of course we do it with preconceptions. But, “truth, capital t” hasn’t been perfectly established yet, although individuals may or may not be ignoring and twisting established information — especially more so as we go on. But this is going to be a noisy event, especially as it’s going to bring to the surface deeply-established differences of experiences to the surface. Some of these differences in preconceptions and expectations are there for a reason, based on long experience.

  140. 140
    tc says:

    Vice Magazine and I think Argus Radio have had live feeds each night. You can watch in real time with your own eyes. I have, and it’s clear the cops have lost their damn minds. You can see it in the images and hear it in the voices of the reporters and the people they are covering. You can see and hear cops threatening both reporters and residents.

    But if you are unwilling to look then yes, shut the fuck up and go back to your gardening. That way it will be easier for you to pretend the scary blacks are at fault.

  141. 141
    fleeting expletive says:

    Rust Cohle “This thing has scope”.

  142. 142
    SatanicPanic says:

    @different-church-lady: There’s been some speculating on blogs, but I don’t know if I feel disappointed about that. I don’t come here (or to any other source) expecting every early guess about something to be right. Shit, even if someone did throw a molotov cocktail at the cops, I don’t think that justifies the police response we’ve seen. Or threatening reporters with jail. That sort of thing.

  143. 143
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne: The previous night there was at least one shooting (not done by police; witnesses who brought the victim into the hospital wouldn’t say how it happened), plus numerous shopowners and residents who stood guard outside local businesses to keep them from being looted. The convenience store where the video of Michael Brown was made was looted, along with other businesses. If you think the protests were peaceful Saturday night, you ought to expand your news sources a little.

  144. 144
    Mandalay says:

    @scav:

    But this search for the ideal source of perfectly unbiased information that all you have to do is effortlessly ingest is a myth.

    This. And it’s also worth pointing out that biased information can also be relevant and true. Here’s a great example from the guy who performed the autopsy of Michael Brown at the request of his family:

    “People have been asking: How many times was he shot? This information could have been released on Day 1,” Dr. Baden said in an interview after performing the autopsy. “They don’t do that, even as feelings built up among the citizenry that there was a cover-up. We are hoping to alleviate that.”

    Now Baden is an interested party; he is working for Brown’s family (pro bono btw). And I found his claim to be surprising. But he has performed ~20,000 autopsies, and I haven’t performed any, and he has his reputation to preserve, so I’m strongly inclined to believe him. As you suggest, just use your BS and logic detectors.

  145. 145
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne: They were angry well before the tear gas. And as gwangung pointed out, the protesters aren’t a homogenous group. The violent ones who end up arrested mostly don’t turn out to be from Ferguson.

  146. 146
    MattR says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    The cops didn’t start using tear gas on rioters. They used it on nonviolent protesters who the police felt didn’t disperse fast enough once the police decided to start the curfew early.

    You used the Al Jazeera to justify that conclusion about the police’s actions tonight. The two articles about tonight’s actions that you linked to stated that the police claimed they responded to a group of “protesters” approaching them. None say anything similar to the following quote from the Al Jazeera piece so I don’t think your conclusion about the police actions tonight can be justified based on current reporting (though it may end up being true).

    As officers put on gas masks, a chant from the distant crowd emerged: “We have the right to assemble peacefully.”

  147. 147
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    Whatever, dude. You’ve obviously made up your mind that tear-gassing citizens during a protest is completely justified because a brick got thrown through the window of the McDonald’s afterwards, and even reports from journalists who were on the scene won’t be able to persuade you otherwise.

  148. 148
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    They were angry well before the tear gas.

    Yes, it’s so weird that they would be angry after an unarmed young man is shot down in the street and the police try to cover it up, followed by days of the police tear-gassing them and firing rubber and wooden bullets at them when they protested. It’s totally inexplicable why they would be angry!

  149. 149
    MattR says:

    @Goblue72: In case you weren’t aware (or for any one else who wasn’t), skerry was quoting a lyric from Zappa’s “Trouble Every Day”. The next lyrics are:

    Well, I seen the fires burnin’
    And the local people turnin’
    On the merchants and the shops
    Who used to sell their brooms and mops
    And every other household item
    Watched the mob just turn and bite ’em
    And they say it served ’em right
    Because a few of them are white,
    And it’s the same across the nation
    Black and white discrimination
    Yellin’ “You can’t understand me!”
    ‘N all that other jazz they hand me
    In the papers and TV and
    All that mass stupidity
    That seems to grow more every day
    Each time you hear some nitwit say
    He wants to go and do you in
    Because the color of your skin
    Just don’t appeal to him
    (No matter if it’s black or white)
    Because he’s out for blood tonight

  150. 150
    Mnemosyne says:

    @MattR:

    We can wait and see, but at this point I will be extremely surprised if tonight’s “rioters” were a completely different group than the ones who were gassed last night.

    And jheartney still hasn’t answered my question about whether or not his local news told him that the people who were gassed last night were shouting that they had a right to peacefully protest, or if they only covered it from behind the police’s shoulders as they shot the canisters into the crowd.

  151. 151
    scav says:

    @Mnemosyne: I’m sorry, I’m just suddenly laughing manically at the vision of some Nugented Bundy Sheriff-totaller ‘mercan patriots cheerfully dispersing at the first order of a curfew by some flak-and-jack booted police authorities.

  152. 152
    sharl says:

    In response to rikyrah’s observation that protestors were attacked hours before the curfew even began, a local STL TV reporter relays this:

    #Ferguson police say coordinated effort to attack police 3 1/2 hrs before midnight curfew prompted tear gas use

    Hmm, could be. But given past statements that didn’t turn out to be true, or were perhaps wildly exaggerated, it would be prudent to take this statement in to The Ye Olde Credibility Shoppe for appraisal.

  153. 153
    Chris says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    The second sin of America was race based slavery, the first sin being simply stealing the land from the indigenous peoples.

    QFT.

    And while the second sin and its legacy are at least often discussed out in the open, the first one seems to’ve been swept pretty completely under the carpet.

  154. 154
    jheartney says:

    @Mnemosyne: Neither of your reports say the protests were peaceful before the police sweep. The first (CBS, not NBC) simply says the marchers “pushed to one end of the street,” and doesn’t address questions of ancillary violence. The second actually quotes the police claim of gunfire and molotov cocktails.

    Is it possible that the police are lying and conducted their teargas and flash grenade sweep just for the hell of it? I guess, but it hardly seems plausible. These forces have been on duty for eight straight days, and are both tired and haven’t seen their families. Most likely their main wish is for this all to be over. I think the large majority of Ferguson feels the same way. Tomorrow’s the first day of school in Ferguson, and the kids are supposed to go catch their buses on streets covered with tear gas canisters. Nobody, including the police, gains from an unnecessary anti-riot action.

  155. 155
    amk says:

    @jheartney:

    They were angry well before the tear gas.

    Of course, they were. Why do ya think they are protesting?

  156. 156
    gwangung says:

    @jheartney: Hm. You keep talking about protesters in monolithic terms. And certainly the police have been treating non-police in monolithic terms. I think it’s best that I think that you conceive of this in simplistic binary terms.

    Oh, and yes, I DO consider the police (at least Ferguson and St. Louis County ) to be less than honest. Proven and shown by their actions and words.

  157. 157
    jheartney says:

    @Ruckus: How many of those arrested who don’t live there are reporters? Not many, if any. In the coverage I watched, reporters were right on the scene, and weren’t mistreated by police. This isn’t like last week, when reporters were excluded from the area and arrested.

  158. 158
    Jordan Rules says:

    Missouri Nat’l Guard called upon by Nixon:

    http://www.abc17news.com/news/.....n/27578148

  159. 159
    jheartney says:

    I’m going to bed. As my final take, I think the STL County police have plenty to answer for, particularly WRT treatment of POC. The Brown shooting looks very bad, and may well have been an act of murder. And Ferguson PD is likely acting to cover for its officer.

    But the idea that tonight’s sweep was an unjustified action taken merely to suppress protest is foolish, if you actually look at the facts on the ground. That’s all I’m saying.

  160. 160
    amk says:

    @jheartney:

    reporters were right on the scene, and weren’t mistreated by police.

    chris hayes tweets tell me you lie.

  161. 161
    John Revolta says:

    “I can hire one half of the working class to kill the other half”

    -Jay Gould, 1886

  162. 162
    Alison says:

    @jheartney:

    Is it possible that the police are lying and conducted their teargas and flash grenade sweep just for the hell of it? I guess, but it hardly seems plausible.

    Why on Earth does this “hardly seem plausible” to you, after everything that has happened? FFS, if you are going to be honest about the relationship between cops and the black community – not just in Missouri but anywhere in this fucking country – you ought to realize that it isn’t just plausible, it’s fucking predictable. The police have ALREADY been lying through their damn teeth about this case for days, while letting the cop who killed Mike Brown take off and gallivant around in parts unknown. The people in Ferguson are pissed because a young man was killed and NO ONE IS DOING A DAMN THING ABOUT IT and apparently no one in charge thinks the person who did it should even have to show up for what will likely be a slap on the wrist.

    These forces have been on duty for eight straight days, and are both tired and haven’t seen their families. Most likely their main wish is for this all to be over.

    It could be over if they would put away their fucking GI Joe toys and get Wilson’s ass back there to face the damn music. “Their wish for this all to be over” – God, this is like wanting someone to apologize for letting their face run into your fist.

  163. 163
    sharl says:

    @Chris: Regarding that whole stealing-the-land-from-those-currently-living-there thing, my strong suspicion is that US history – while not credited (for obvious reasons) – served as a useful template for more recent and ongoing territorial plunder, as laid out in this post and this rather detailed comment over there.

  164. 164
    MattR says:

    @Mnemosyne: I can’t really comment on tonight since I just got home about two hours ago. But I will say the Ferguson and St Louis County PD really put the State Police behind the 8 ball.

    No direct Ferguson mentions at the Oddball Fest in Jersey tonight, but at least one comedian, I think Michael Che, did a bit about getting “the talk” from his dad about the police. WIsh I could remember exactly what he said, but the 8 comedians are all kinda running together in my head right now.

  165. 165
    jheartney says:

    @amk: You mean like this one?

    Lots of police *not* being hotheads. Being calm and cool.

  166. 166
    jheartney says:

    Tweet from Antonio French, St. Louis alderman who was arrested a few days ago:

    These people are not protestors. This is something different and it has little to do with #JusticeForMikeBrown.

    Now I really am going to bed.

  167. 167
    Suffern ACE says:

    @Jordan Rules: not surprising.

  168. 168
    amk says:

    @jheartney: yeah, one selective tweet that floats your boat.

  169. 169
    Suffern ACE says:

    @amk:

    The situation “took a very different turn after dark,” Johnson said, deteriorating at 8:25 p.m. with a civilian shooting. Protesters fired at police and threw Molotov cocktails, he said.

    So that’s two. French and Johnson are saying that something is different. The governor, who could have called out the national guard any time in the past four days , has now done so.

    Or it could just be a fuckwit who thought fireworks would add excitement to the street and everyone overreacts. At this point, who knows?

  170. 170
    Debbie(aussie) says:

    Just read that Gov Nixon has called in/on (?) National Guard. One of the problems as I see it is how to distinguish between protesters and assholes who use it as cover to damage. I am so sorry that a young man has been murdered and the colleagues of the murderer are (successfully) attempting to cover it up. I really do not understand racism at all.
    I guess that not only must you choose rich parents, ensure they are white, (or does that go with out saying). /Snark

  171. 171
    sharl says:

    Governor Jay Nixon is sending in the MO National Guard. Probably not a surprise to most folks already following this fustercluck…

    And hey, declared candidate for the 2015 Nigerian Presidential election, Elnathan John, has some thoughts about Ferguson too. Specifically, he sees a potential role for Nigeria as a defender of oppressed descendants of Mother Africa. So he’s thinking that maybe Nigeria should offer to send peacekeeping troops into Ferguson, or if things get really bad, send in some drones to do some airstrikes.

    I feel like maybe we’ve done some effective mentoring here, student-becomes-the-teacher and all that. I hope Sen. Walnuts is feeling as proud as I am about this.

    ETA: It’s possible that Elnathan John is being a bit snarky; mixed feelings here if true. His writings on their Ebola crisis is dead-on serious though, and maybe worth a read.

  172. 172
    Suffern ACE says:

    @sharl: I’m fine with Nigerian aid. There are a few square blocks of “unrest”, that don’t appear to be spreading anywhere else in the country or the city. So far, counting Brown, the fatality toll is up to one. We might as well call in the blue helmets. It’s practically Gaza .

  173. 173
    wasabi gasp says:

    The witness accounts I heard said that Brown took a bullet near the cruiser, one while fleeing – causing him to turn and raise his hands – then the rest were fired. Assuming that’s true (and assuming the shot in the eye wasn’t the first shot,) that would mean at least one shot in the arm would have occurred at each of these three moments. I don’t know what to make of it, but it’s a little odd, that arm.

    The two head shots appear to have similar trajectories. Unless the cop executed Brown while he was kneeling down (which I don’t recall mentioned by witness accounts) then brown would have been bent over for some reason, (I don’t recall that mentioned, either.) I’m not seeing a real obvious reason why he might have bent over from a standing hands-up position.

    What’s known about Michael Brown’s actions that day don’t seem to match his history. That robbery was pretty brazen and incriminating. Was he not aware of surveillance cameras? And a getaway strolling down the middle of the street?

    It’s not hard to think this kid really did not want to go to college.

  174. 174
    Chris says:

    @Alison:

    Why on Earth does this “hardly seem plausible” to you, after everything that has happened?

    I fucking love it when after all else has failed, people fall back on “but why would these nice people do a thing like that? It makes no sense.” When someone dies in a gang killing, or a jihadi attack, does anyone ask “goodness. But why would they do a thing like that? It just doesn’t make sense, ergo I don’t believe it happened.”

    Because there’s no possible way 1) it might make sense from a cop’s POV (in a “every ten years the U.S. needs to pick up a little country and throw it against the wall just to show we mean business” kind of way), or 2) that cops would ever do anything that wouldn’t make sense.

  175. 175
    Junior says:

    @jheartney:

    The facts that there are some violent people AND peaceful demonstrators are not mutually inconsistent. The fact that there are violent people in town also doesn’t mean the police are primarily attacking peaceful demonstrators.

    I’ve seen people (at a safe distance) starting a riot by turning over police cruisers and setting them on fire and throwing literally and factually hundreds of projectiles at small groups of police officers. This was in 1970 (or ’71 – it was a long time ago) in Chicago, in a sunlite park after a free concert in the summer afternoon. We were young men in civilian clothes in a Navy school north of Chicago and we got away from the increasing violence fast.

    I don’t believe all of even most of the demonstrators in Ferguson at violent, not at all. I have also seen (on national TV news, which at the time was the only news source) Chicago police riot in the face of peaceful demonstrators, intentionally and obviously causing public disturbances where there would be none without an overwhelming and violent police presence.

    I have friends (one is an ER Doc) who were arrested for participating in a peaceful demonstration in Washington DC, kept overnight, booked and released, then later having all charges dismissed.

    I have friends who were in Kent Ohio when the National Guard shot kids who were going between class while peaceful dduteemonstrations were also going on. The pollice shut Kent down and searched house to house, with no reporters present for days. They were trying to find the communist organizers who magically caused the police to shoot students who should have been violent outsider members of anarchist members of revolutionary student organizations, but were in fact students at Kent State University going to class.

    There is nothign new about police rioting in the USA. Nothing. They do it to white people too, all the time, as needed. Labor organizers, political organizers – anyone who is nott part of the power elite in a town can be atacked, often with machine guns and tear gas.

    Labor groups used to dig slit trenches as one of their first tasks in a strike, because they knew the police and/or company enforcers would be shooting at them, women and children machine gunned right here in America, in the recent past. I had a friend and teacher who was maimed and beaten to a pulp and left to die in a ditch for the crime of being in a union and organizing in Kentucky.

    So no one should be shocked or surprised that a small group of cops in a small town have turned violent and are shooting tear gas at their employers, the people who live in THEIR town. The cops are not going to see one of their own arrested for killing a Ni-CLANG if there is anything they can do about it – and there is something they can do about it.

    The only way to stop the violence in Ferguson is to get the out of town trouble makers – that would be the Cops, who don’t live in town – out of a position of p[ower in the town. They all need to be put on a paid suspension for what they are doing, and then peace would magically take place. Any new group of law enforcement people would be better than what they have.

  176. 176
  177. 177
    sharl says:

    @wasabi gasp: If Michael Brown did not really want to go to college, he would hardly be the first reluctant teen in such a matter. All I remember is his mother saying something to the effect that (paraphrasing): DO YOU KNOW HOW HARD IT WAS TO GET HIM TO THE STAGE OF BEING A HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATE? It may be that she was in fact dragging her son kicking-&-whining toward college – I have no idea, but having known a few teens (and moms) in my time, it wouldn’t particularly surprise me if it were true. That’s a typical mom thing to do, and maybe/probably/usually a good mom thing to do, and if one’s son has bleak prospects in the face of limited alternatives, it’s likely a thing a worried mom will try to do.

    I’ve read on several occasions that so many low/no income African-American mothers of sons live in a state of almost daily terror, wondering whether their sons will be shot on the street in any one of so many dangerous scenarios, or sent to prison for an offense – real, exaggerated, or fabricated entirely – with racist-and/or-trigger-happy cops being a significant risk factor. If such mothers can get their sons through their teenage knucklehead years without imprisonment, crippling gunshot injury, or death, it is no small victory. Lots of idiot white teenage boys manage to get away with shoplifting, auto infractions, vandalism, etc., without getting pumped with bullets. Would be nice for idiot black teenage boys to get the same breaks.

    I dunno, maybe my knowledge on this comes from the 90s crack era, and things are better now on average (though apparently not in Ferguson). But I still see frequent reference to parents of African-American boys giving their sons The Talk

    Although fiction, and though involving an equally fictional “good” Baltimore City police force, there is a scene (8m5s) from an episode of the 1994-5 season of Homicide: Life on the Street, that has always stuck with me, with two mothers in the police station commiserating with one another on these terrifying challenges of raising boys in a violent and unforgiving environment. [That episode, Every Mother’s Son, has a gut-wrenching, horrifying ending.]

    Reluctance to go to college, or acting like a bullying jerk in a shop, or arguing with a cop – regardless of whether any of those are applicable or not to the final minutes of Michael Brown – should not carry the death sentence in any decent civilized society.

  178. 178
    Chris says:

    @sharl:

    Good posts.

    This especially:

    The Israelis have no more motivation to actually settle for a permanent two state solution with the Palestinians than the 7th Cavalry had to settle with Sitting Bull or Red Cloud.

    Agreed.

    The problem here is ultimately that the state of Israel is a theocratic state based on allowing only one religious group suffrage. That is an artificial circumstance.

    Well, technically, no – Arab Israelis and other non-Jews are allowed to vote, I believe. However, if I recall correctly, their parties have to uphold Israel’s status as a Jewish state – and in any case, their being allowed to vote is done with the understanding that they’re minorities anyway (“we can afford to be generous: it’s not like they’re ever going to outvote us anyway.”) If demographics do eventually “threaten” to turn them into a majority, expect the kind of vote-suppression thing we’ve seen in America in the last few years… on fucking steroids.

    And this, of course, is talking only of Arab Israelis. The status of the Palestinians in the territories is… vaguer… intentionally so. It’s one reason Israel hasn’t gone for one big outright annexation: it would be difficult for them to justify the denial of voting rights to all the people living there. So for the moment, it’s in this fuzzy legal limbo, where the West Bank is “occupied” territories as far as the foreign cameras are concerned, but colonization is continued with strong covert and increasingly overt support from the Israeli government, borders keep getting redefined… etc.

    The Israeli’s have effectively prevented a two state solution, so there will have to be a one-state solution. However, like South Africa, the Arab and non jewish population will have to be suppressed by increasing levels of force. At some point this will fail and there will rise a multi cultural secular state.

    Even in the far future, the thing about a multicultural secular state is that it goes against everything Israel is and was founded as. Israel is the Jewish state, and it’s an article of faith far beyond the Likud crowd that it’s indispensable that it remains, as the one refuge where Jews needn’t fear persecution.

    Look at how paranoid and insecure the white community is in the U.S. at the prospect of America no longer being a white or white-majority nation. Throw in the fact that America’s strategic situation is far better than Israel’s (in fact, pretty much the best in the world); that its citizens have no memory of recent attempted invasions; that there was no holocaust of white or WASP people underpinning the creation of America; that the creation of America, in general, wasn’t justified along the lines of making America specifically THE homeland to keep X ethnic group safe… and consider how much exponentially worse it’s going to be when Israel hits that point.

    That process may take a while.

    That is a fucking fact.

  179. 179
    raven says:

    Key Smith, 46, a veteran who served in Iraq, said that he, his wife and their 7-year-old son had traveled two hours from Fort Valley, Ga., to attend a church rally to honor Mr. Brown and that they were caught up in the violence as they were trying to get home.

    “I just came out to see a peaceful rally,” Mr. Smith said. “It takes away from his death, his memory.”

    Mr. Smith said he did not blame the police for their response. “You have to disperse the crowd if the crowd gets wild,” he said. “This is getting out of hand. It’s kind of sad that it’s come to this. If you really want to hit them in the right way, get out there and vote.”

  180. 180
    Chris says:

    @raven:

    And there we are with that assumed benefit of the doubt, every possible doubt, for the cops. “Oh, well, if there was an altercation, I’m sure it was all justified, I’m sure these nice young boys in their nice blue uniforms would never do anything unless they were provoked.” And people wonder how an above-the-law mentality took hold in the police in the first place.

  181. 181
    raven says:

    @Chris: WE aren’t anywhere pal.

  182. 182
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Chris: Giving every possible benefit of the doubt to the cops would obviously be dumb, given their past behavior. But does it makes sense to attribute every move they make to pure malice, particularly given the change in command?

    I saw a clip of Captain Johnson’s speech during the rally yesterday afternoon. He seems like a decent guy who understands the community and the stakes. Late last night, after the cops rolled in to disperse the crowd, I heard him say he had no choice but to suppress the demonstration because shots were fired at the cops, businesses were vandalized and looted and Molotov cocktails were thrown.

    So is Captain Johnson a villain now? A tool of the white power structure? I don’t know what’s going on in Ferguson with any certainty. But I’m pretty sure it’s more complicated than pure good vs. pure evil. It always is.

  183. 183
    Cervantes says:

    @sharl:

    Regarding that whole stealing-the-land-from-those-currently-living-there thing, my strong suspicion is that US history – while not credited (for obvious reasons) – served as a useful template for more recent and ongoing territorial plunder, as laid out in this post and this rather detailed comment over there.

    As it’s not on-topic, I won’t get into details, but — you may be interested in the following exchange (1982) between Gilles Deleuze and Elias Sanbar:

    GD: You insist […] on the comparison with the American Indians. There are two very different movements within capitalism. [On the one hand] it is a matter of taking a people on their own territory and making them work, exploiting them, in order to accumulate a surplus: that’s what is ordinarily called a colony. [And on the other hand] it is a matter of emptying a territory of its people in order to make a leap forward, even if it means making them into a workforce elsewhere. The history of Zionism and Israel, like that of America, happened that second way: how to make an empty space, how to throw out a people?

    […]

    ES: Moreover, I think that in 1948 [my land, Palestine] was not merely occupied but was somehow “disappeared.” That’s certainly the way that the Jewish settlers, who at that moment became “Israelis,” had to live the thing.

    The Zionist movement mobilized the Jewish community in Palestine not with the idea that the Palestinians were going to leave one day, but with the idea that the country was “empty.” Of course there were certain people who, arriving there, noticed the opposite and wrote about it! But the bulk of this community functioned vis-à-vis the people with whom it physically rubbed shoulders every day as if those people were not there. And this blindness was not physical, no one was deceived in the slightest degree, but everyone knew that these people present today were “on the point of disappearance,” everyone also realized that in order for this disappearance to succeed, it had to function from the start as if it had already taken place, which is to say by never “seeing” the existence of the other who was indisputably present all the same. In order to succeed, the emptiness of the terrain must be based in an evacuation of the “other” from the settlers’ own heads.

    In order to arrive there, the Zionist movement consistently played upon a racist vision which made Judaism the very basis of the expulsion, of the rejection of the other. This was decisively aided by the persecutions in Europe which, led by other racists, allowed them to find a confirmation of their own approach.

    I’ve taken that from:

    Deleuze, Gilles and Sanbar, Elias, “The Indians of Palestine,” Discourse: Journal for Theoretical Studies in Media and Culture, 20:3 (1998).

    And that is Timothy Murphy’s translation of the 1982 original:

    “Les indiens de Palestine,” Gilles Deleuze & Elias Sanbar, Libération, Mai 8-9, 1982.

  184. 184
    Cervantes says:

    @A Humble Lurker:
    @Burnspbesq:
    @amk:

    So predictable it’s funny.

  185. 185
    sharl says:

    @Cervantes: Thanks; that IS interesting (and gawd-awfully sad and tragic)! My limited knowledge on this topic has basically been vaguely recalled accounts by honest* historian (and unapologetic Zionist) Benny Morris of what REALLY happened in 1948, i.e., many Palestinians did NOT just abandon their own homes of their own volition, which was the official Israeli story for the longest time (and maybe still is, for all I know).

    *AFAICT

  186. 186
    Cervantes says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Without commenting on the — is “merits” the right word? — of what you say above, here you are four days ago:

    Glenzilla is not interested in the problems of dark people. Only dudebros.

    and

    Good that he’s tweeting, but when he brings more of his patented endless blog posts to bear, I’ll be much more impressed.

    Not yet, I guess!

  187. 187
    Cervantes says:

    @sharl: Yes, Benny is honest, at least to the extent that anyone can be. Glad you read him; more people should.

  188. 188
    Cervantes says:

    @sharl: Incidentally, re “sad and tragic,” would you say it’s Sanbar’s third quoted paragraph that is most devastating?

  189. 189
    Kay says:

    @Chris:

    I think you’d want to start focusing in on specific wrongdoing, just because it gets blurred and that probably protects the people in the county who have really behaved badly.

    Criminal lawyers here (and one, my husband, is a former prosecutor) think police releasing the video of the theft incident was outrageous and should have to be answered for. They’d want to know who approved that release, and whether the county prosecutor had any role in that decision. I didn’t have that initial reaction but they all believe it was an incredibly bad decision on all kinds of levels and should be challenged.

  190. 190
    sharl says:

    @Kay: Outside of the police officials who actually released that video, I’ve heard nothing but criticism.

    At the time the top police guy said he was responding to a FOIA request… or was it that he was expecting a FOIA request, and acted pre-emptively? I cannot remember, but assuming the former: are FOIA requests a matter of public record, or is that jurisdiction-dependent at the state level (i.e., might MO be different from OH)?

    Someone should demand he show that FOIA request (or requests), if in fact such request(s) exist. If nothing else, I would think that could be a major issue in one or more* civil cases (but IANAL).

    *e.g., in the event looted/vandalized shop owners want to recover damages, and think they can make the case that release of that video, and the way they did it, lit a keg of dynamite, so to speak.

  191. 191
    Marc says:

    @Cervantes: Your hero-worship of St. Glenn to the contrary, others have been leading on these issues for years.

  192. 192
    Cervantes says:

    @Marc: Your definition of “hero-worship” leaves something to be desired. All I did was quote a relevant excerpt of his that others claimed they needed to see.

  193. 193
    Kay says:

    @sharl:

    Well, they would have thought it was dirty pool if he had released all the information from the FOIA demand and included the video but police could then come back and say “FOIA!” so it would be harder to claim bad intent. They think the selective release is just really bad behavior and obviously intended to bias and inflame. We know the DOJ advised against it, so who was on the other side of that? The county prosecutor?

  194. 194
    Cervantes says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name):

    Don’t lets make Glenn Greenwald the issue here. Michael Brown is the issue. The police’s actions in Ferguson are the issue.

    The passage of his that’s quoted above was on topic; the responses hilariously not. Pavlov’s dogs would be embarrassed for these people.

  195. 195
    Cervantes says:

    @Kay: What was your initial reaction? Mine was the same as your husband’s.

  196. 196
    Kay says:

    @sharl:

    lit a keg of dynamite, so to speak.

    That’s part of it, but what’s worse is that they desperately need credibility and doing that really corrodes credibility. Even if it was a mistake or just a bad call (II don’t think it was, I think it was deliberate) there are some mistakes that can’t be undone. It’s nice to apologize and all, but there’s consequences for actions and one of the consequences here is they damaged their own credibility.

  197. 197
    sharl says:

    @Kay: Thanks. That was the impression I got, i.e., that releasing the video, especially in the way they did, was a you’ve-shit-the-bed-and-you-can’t-unshit-it situation.

  198. 198
    Kay says:

    @Cervantes:

    I didn’t think about the ethical or tactical issues, prosecution versus defense and what’s right to put out there. I just focused on watching the video. I’m having trouble with it. I watched the longer version yesterday and I sincerely hope that there was an actual, verifiable “robbery” there (which in Missouri just means theft with force, any force, that’s 2nd degree robbery in that state) there or it’s really bad behavior by police/prosecutor. . He isn’t at all covert in the video. I thought it was a situation where they shoplifted the cigars and then got caught so panicked and pushed the clerk. The longer version doesn’t look like that scenario at all. I don’t know what happened. Do they? If they don’t, why release the video?

  199. 199
    Cervantes says:

    @Kay: What do you make of the argument that it shouldn’t matter whether there was “an actual, verifiable ‘robbery'” there?

  200. 200
    Peter says:

    Arguments that the police just have to tear gas all those protestors because they were getting unruly and violent would hold a lot more water with me if the police were not themselves continually escalating the conflict by pointing assault rifles at the protestors and showing up in fucking tanks.

    You know, and if we hadn’t actually seen how totally different the results are when they put the dick-enhancement devices away for a night.

  201. 201
    Cervantes says:

    @Peter: Re what the so-called police have done in Ferguson, see here for Kelsey Atherton’s collection of comments by US veterans.

  202. 202
    Kay says:

    @Cervantes:

    It shouldn’t matter. I agree with that. The only way it might matter is from the other side, the defense of the police officer. If they say the police officer knew that they were leaving the scene of a robbery and that they were the suspects, that justifies more force certainly than jaywalking although not shooting him to death.

    But so far they aren’t saying that. It looks like they are relying on “struggle for gun” and “injured officer”. Again, they aren’t the defense. They shouldn’t be working on one. It’s like we skipped a step here and we’ve moved right to “was it justifiable?” – he hasn’t even been indicted yet. The way this works is the prosecution goes first.

  203. 203
    raven says:

    @Peter: “You know, and if we hadn’t actually seen how totally different the results are when they put the dick-enhancement devices away for a night. ‘

    That’s bullshit and you know it.

  204. 204
    redoubt says:

    @raven: Two hours from Fort Valley to St. Louis area? Private plane. Let’s hope Fort Valley–home of an HBCU–can continue to be accepting.

  205. 205
    Cervantes says:

    @raven: How so? Can you elaborate?

    (I did see your earlier exchange with Chris.)

  206. 206
    Peter says:

    @raven: You’re right, it is bullshit. That military gear doesn’t enhance their penises at all.

  207. 207
    sharl says:

    @Cervantes: I don’t know. The second (long) paragraph is competitive in that contest IMO; seems to combine Orwellian doublethink with ‘banality of evil’*, as in – if I’m interpreting correctly – ‘we’ll just assume the land is empty, and we’ll see straight through the apparitions of existing residents as if they aren’t there (because they’re NOT there!), and reconcile any inconvenient situations we encounter by whatever means necessary, as long as it results in alignment with reality as we’ve defined it.’

    *the classic non-revisionist version of Arendt, as opposed to this, for example.

  208. 208
    Keith G says:

    @jheartney:

    I’m doing no such thing. I’m just describing what I’m seeing.

    You are engaging with that part of the commentary here who will brook no deviation from the their “party line”.

    The shooting of Brown is a tragedy. The political leadership of that community bear most of the responsibility for the conditions that lead up to that act and complete responsibility for the stupid earlier responses to the rightful outpouring of public emotion over this event.

    At what point do groups of people stop being part of a solemn observance, or a Constitutionally protected protest and become just a crowd milling about the public streets?

    When there is no positive leadership suggesting action for that crowd and the crowd becomes a vehicle for some to engage in activities that pose danger or are clearly illegal, the police will act.

    Remember, this is the state police that folks here were so happy to have on the scene just two days ago. Now because these “good guys” have acted to address a perceived risk to public safety, they have become the bad guys?

    Too bad that there has not been better community (non governmental) leadership on the ground in Ferguson to put forward an effort to proactively shape the activities of folks on the street. Give them a focus for gathering, a goal to accomplish, and then an end point – and the chance to say, “We are done for today. Now go home and we will meet back here tomorrow.”

    The National Guard are coming next. (Sigh)

    I hope community leadership can somehow step up before the reason for this outpouring of emotion get watered down by unnecessary events.

  209. 209
    BobS says:

    @Burnspbesq:Had you bothered to read the article rather than commenting while ignorant — a trait you seem to share with others at Balloon Juice whenever Greenwald is mentioned — you would have learned he addressed the issue of the militarization of the police in 2008 while writing about the Republican convention in St.Paul for Salon.
    He also provides a lot of useful links (including articles in the Christian Science Monitor, LA Times, and NY Times) and nods to other writers like Rodney Balko for anyone trying to get up to speed on the subject. Of course, that wouldn’t include someone who’s already an expert like yourself.

  210. 210
    LAC says:

    @jheartney: and thus ends this episode of “faux concern/real troll”. Tune in next time when we will be making a pained face and worriedly discussing “blacks-why so angry?”

  211. 211
    raven says:

    @Keith G:

    Antonio French @AntonioFrench · 2m
    There is a small group of people who cannot be defined as protestors/demonstrators. They are more like fighters/rebels/insurgents.

    This from Alderman Antonio French who has been there a great deal of the time.

  212. 212
    raven says:

    @Cervantes: So the good vibe lasted one night and then the shit came down again. The “militarization” and then “un-militarization”, as alderman French pointed out, had little impact on the “fighters/rebels/insurgents.”

    Now, if that’s what you want, great. Maybe it will be the start of a civil war and lots and lots of people can get killed. Some people think that’s the only way to meaningful change. I’m saying call it what it is.

  213. 213
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Keith G: There was an interesting item in the NYT Saturday about leadership on the ground and a generational split.

    Article summary: There’s no unified front, and the “community leaders” — older folks, clergy members, etc. — are trying to get people to protest non-violently. Some younger folks are saying screw that, we need to take on the cops directly.

    Are the people who are tossing Molotov cocktails and looting opportunists? Or are they just fed up with non-violent tactics that they don’t see as effective and trying to shake things up another way? My guess is both.

    As a middle-aged, second-generation hippie, I’m hoping the non-violent protesters prevail for two reasons: 1) I’d hate to see anyone else get killed, and 2) The people who will bear the brunt of escalated violence won’t be the people who killed Mike Brown or made life in Ferguson intolerable even before Brown was killed.

  214. 214
    Cervantes says:

    @Keith G: Lots in your comment to think about but for now I have one (loaded) question: in what sense are you using the word “tragedy”?

  215. 215
    Bendal says:

    Police in Ferguson are handling the crowd with the ‘one size fits all’ theory. If one person throws a rock, or refuses to obey an order, then the tear gas comes out for everyone, which then provokes even more violent responses, which they then use to justify even more extreme reactions (rubber bullets, armored vehicles, etc). So far I’ve not seen anyone provide a timeline and location as to where and when the actions took place that led to the police using tear gas last night.

    All I’ve heard was that the protesters were marching up the street, the police ordered them to stop, and the tear gas came out. Comments from those who were there say the protest was peaceful; the police claim that vandalism and rock throwing was taking place. Absent video saying one thing or the other, who is to be believed?

    As for the preliminary autopsy report, I’m hearing some claim this vindicates the police’ side of the story. I’m not so sure; Brown was shot through the palm and forearm? As in, “I’m holding up my hands, don’t shoot any more”? The fatal wound entered near the top of his head; was he falling forward from the other injuries, kneeling down or something else? The claims that he was ‘shot while running away’ may be inaccurate, but that doesn’t mean the policeman wasn’t shooting at him while running away; it could also mean he was hit after he stopped and tried to give up.

  216. 216
    chopper says:

    @jheartney:

    The Brown shooting looks very bad, and may well have been an act of murder.

    it’s a possibility! i mean, who knows, amirite? it sure looks bad. or not, i’m a solid ‘maybe’.

    perchance do you write for slate?

  217. 217
    Tone In DC says:

    What’s happening in Ferguson is an obscenity. It doesn’t just remind me of the Jim Crow South and the police actions against civil rights and anti-war protestors during the 1960s-1970s; it also reminds me of Iraq from 2003 on, when the US presence was so much a causative factor of the chaos and bloodshed.

    If the US law enforcement apparatus is anything more than state-sanctioned brutishness aimed at the powerless… if the US government is anything more than a shill for the 1%… this would be a good time to let us know. Because it sure as fuck doesn’t look like it right now.

    I heard that.

  218. 218
    KXB says:

    Every day the rioting continues, one more potential juror in any trial of Officer Darren Wilson will have reasonable doubt.

  219. 219
    Keith G says:

    @Cervantes: Loaded? Hardly.

    I suppose few deaths are timely. Still, the sudden and unnecessary (as far as we can tell) killing of Brown seems to fit the bill as being a tragedy. Or as many dictionaries post as their first definition…

    …an event causing great suffering, destruction, and distress, such as a serious accident, crime, or natural catastrophe

  220. 220
    KXB says:

    @sharl:

    Fantastic episode. Among the unsettling scenes, a 14 year old shooter who excuses his violence against the wrong kid, by arguing it is no different than a car accident. But one night in a jail cell was so terrifying, he reverts back to a frightened little boy.

  221. 221
    Cervantes says:

    @Keith G:

    Was wondering how much inevitability you had in mind, it being the essence of Greek tragedy. Hence “loaded.”

    Would like to get back to your previous comment if time allows; meanwhile, thanks for clarifying.

  222. 222
    Keith G says:

    @Betty Cracker: Well, at least it’s both the start of a new work week as well as the start of the first full week of the new academic year of the public school in the greater St. Louis area. Hopefully that will put a bit of downward pressure on crowd size in upcoming nights.

  223. 223
    Keith G says:

    @Cervantes: That is an interesting point. You, as is often the case, are a few steps ahead of me. That would be an interesting discussion all by itself, but maybe not now.

    I am off to my Monday gig (volunteering at an AIDS hospice). I will check back later.

    BTW – The hospice is where I go to get a better (more content and hopeful) view of the human condition than I get in much of my time online.

  224. 224
    sparrow says:

    @Anya: THANK YOU. I am sorry to say most of the white people I know basically have the opinion that since he wasn’t one of the “good ones” then he probably deserved it. I am fucking sick of white people, I am sick of their lack of humanity, of decency, or fairness, their thick-headedness and closed eyes and closed hearts. I’m fucking SICK of it. More so because I am one, and I can’t get ANYWHERE with them, not even my family. I argue all day long and get nowhere. I feel like throwing up when I hear them speak. I know who the fucking “animals” are in all this. I recognize there is a small fraction of white folk that are not clueless and mean, but it’s just so goddamned depressingly small.

  225. 225
    Cervantes says:

    @Keith G:

    The hospice is where I go to get a better (more content and hopeful) view of the human condition than I get in much of my time online.

    Not your primary purpose, I’m sure, but it’s good to avoid relentless folly whenever possible.

  226. 226
    Peter says:

    @raven: …making a statement that is not particularly germane to the conversation, at least not in the way you think it is.

  227. 227
    Matt McIrvin says:

    I think there are a lot of white liberals who know what side they’re on as long as every single black person in town behaves like a saint and the police are villains out of Central Casting. Whenever the situation gets a little more ambiguous, if somebody actually starts to riot, they’ll flip to supporting whatever the police do. Or, if not that, at least feel like they were lied to and just shut down.

  228. 228
    Emma says:

    I’ve read through the whole thread. Three comments: (1)lots of forensic experts out there who don’t have the qualifications (watching CSI shows don’t count); (2)lots of people out there who want black people to be perfect (reminds me of the anti-war protests that were dismissed because some of the protesters did something the person objected to) and (3)how easy it is for white people to grab at any excuse to create a narrative in which there might, possibly, be a reason why the authorities are reacting properly (in spite of the often said “I really think they acted wrongly at the beginning”).

  229. 229
    jon says:

    That the police released only part of the “robbery” suggests James O’Keefe has a new gig now that he has infiltrated our Southern border.

    http://youtu.be/maA1FUJqhew

  230. 230
    AxelFoley says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: This. So very much, this.

  231. 231
    safeshark says:

    Cole seems to just love kaos. I think it probably makes him feel better about his own train wreck of a life.

    Sounds to me he sould care less about Ferguson (which he obviously has no clue about sitting on his ass in front of his computer in his white picket fence house in butt fuk Virginia) and more about his own train wrecks where he can’t even go get a hair cut without fuking up.

  232. 232
    Another Holocene Human (now with new computer) says:

    @Suzanne:

    Not that it matters, but my last interaction with police was also disappointing: I was driving down one of the freeways in Phoenix, when I saw a woman climbing over the barrier on one of the overpasses. I called 911 and described the situation. The dispatcher was such an idiot that she couldn’t figure out where I had identified the situation, despite me telling her which freeway, which overpass, and which direction.

    I’ve had similar interactions with dispatchers. All I can say is that the job has a high burnout rate (I think the long hours and lack of breaks probably doesn’t help) and so you have newbs on all the time. They’re also set up to do all dispatching by computer so if you know what a location is but don’t have an address formatted identically to what’s in their computer (in my area, much of the housing projects have house numbers that don’t match the coded addresses, causing missed calls) they won’t dispatch anybody. GPS on phone for calling 911 if you’re on scene is best but whenever you call and have to give a second location, look out.

    It’s actually horrifying how much they depend on the computer. Heard of a house fire where dispatcher refused to take turn directions from caller, fire truck computer dispatched with some sort of mapping software, drove up a dead end because one of the roads on the map doesn’t exist in real life, found themselves stuck a block away from the house fire, house burned down. That happened in historic AA neighborhood in Gainesville. It’s well within City limits but you’d never know by condition of infrastructure. Because the South.

  233. 233
    Matt McIrvin says:

    I’ve seen a very small number of more-radical-than-thou types who seem to be hoping for nationwide Helter Skelter. They are distinguished by being not-black and being very far from Ferguson, Missouri.

    But I don’t think John is one of them, I think he’s just sad about it.

  234. 234
    Cacti says:

    I disagree with the assessment that Brown’s killing was the result of deliberate militarization of police departments. Wilson wasn’t in riot gear and likely as not, discharged his sidearm at Brown.

    Brown’s killing is the result of 4-centuries worth of institutional racism in American law enforcement organizations. Militarization isn’t the reason why Ferguson PD is 90% white in a town that’s 67% black, or that its officers aren’t required to live in the city limits.

    Cops in this country believe their duty is to ride herd on the minority population. That’s why Michael Brown was killed. The mistreatment of the protesters by paramilitary police tactics is an unfortunate, but separate issue.

  235. 235
    Another Holocene Human (now with new computer) says:

    @Felanius Kootea: From Amadou Diallo to Eric Garner, the police in NY haven’t changed their stripes one bit. Time to clean house, time to get rid of CYA internal affairs and bring in an external investigatory arm, get rid of the rotten apples whether they’re commanders, union officers, or freshly minted cadets.

    I also question this notion that cops shouldn’t be above a certain IQ. Doesn’t selecting for low IQ cops actually heighten likelihood of cop violence? Higher IQ people are less likely to be in prison because IQ is correlated not just to class status but to frontal lobe development, the part of the brain that maps out the consequences of your actions. That’s why low IQ people tend to fill up the prisons, because they engage in stupid impulsive violent crimes and leave evidence everywhere. (I’m sure there are plenty of high IQ criminal minds engaging in legal graft and nest feathering all over the place, but even the ones that break the law rarely end up in prison, the smarter ones figure out how to do all that shit legally, compare Rick Scott who broke the law and got away with it and that Susan Komen Foundation racket, all perfectly legal.)

    Maybe what cop shops need to screen for is empathy and freeze out those who lack it. Lack of empathy might be okay for a surgeon, since it’s hard to cut people open if you’re wincing and vomiting, but it’s feeding the cycle of violence in a cop because normal people with normal empathy already have cognitive and perceptual biases that escalate situations.

  236. 236
    flukebucket says:

    GOPUSAEagle just sent me an email with the subject line, “Hug a Thug fails: National Guard headed towards Ferguson”

  237. 237
    El Caganer says:

    Billmon has some concerns that the MO National Guard might not be the ideal force to send in:
    https://storify.com/billmon1/the-national-guard-does-ferguson

  238. 238
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jheartney:

    Is it possible that the police are lying and conducted their teargas and flash grenade sweep just for the hell of it? I guess, but it hardly seems plausible.

    Given the police actions of the past week, I find it highly plausible. Why is your assumption that they were acting in bad faith a week ago, but are acting in good faith now?

    And, yes, I’m sure the officers on the scene would love to go back to their homes and families, but they shook the bottle to get the genie out of it, so they can’t whine now that it’s too haaarrrdddd to calm people down once they’ve been tear gassed.

  239. 239
    Another Holocene Human (now with new computer) says:

    @BobS: What is it about Greenwald that his fans always engage in thread derails in order to aggrandize him?

    Greenwald like many libertarians has written on this issue but he ignores the root causes (because the libertarian prescription is and has been an utter failure — that is on race issues, the legacy of slavery, and the role of state, especially federal power). There are all of these local politicians tweeting, as well as prominent Black leaders speaking out, but hold up, let’s hear what Saint Glenn has to say about it. Fuck him, fuck Rand Paul, militarization of police my ass, did Bull Connor need tanks to beat the Freedom Riders and a federal agent into a bloody pulp? This shit is as American as cherry pie. It’s about white supremacy and systemic, structural racism. Libertarianism is about wanking and denying that racism exists or that it could ever possibly be addressed by state intervention, even though that’s the only thing that seems to be effective, because that would mean giving up some privilege and libertarians will never agree to give up some of their precious privilege.

    I can see why some white so-called liberals would be drawn to privilege-bubble politics, but I sure as hell don’t like it.

  240. 240
    Cervantes says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Why is your assumption that they were acting in bad faith a week ago, but are acting in good faith now?

    Who was “they” then? Who is “they” now?

  241. 241
    Another Holocene Human (now with new computer) says:

    @sparrow:

    I feel like throwing up when I hear them speak. […] I recognize there is a small fraction of white folk that are not clueless and mean, but it’s just so goddamned depressingly small.

    Quoted for truth.

  242. 242
    Another Holocene Human (now with new computer) says:

    @Matt McIrvin: Pathetic. Reporters were tweeting a couple of nights ago (I guess Friday?) about a white guy throwing rocks who had been causing trouble all week.

    There are peaceful protestors who have obeyed curfews. There are protestors who deliberately broke them but who were non-violent. There are the usually criminals out there committing criminal acts but with the police behind a cordon of their own creating good luck investigating that shit, and then there are provocateurs wanting to kick off the revolution. And then there are the out of town looters.

    Vancouver’s post hoc social media looter outing showed that the vast majority of downtown looters were suburban college and high school kids. So I believe Ferguson residents when they spoke of looters coming from the next town over.

  243. 243
    Jebediah, RBG says:

    @sparrow:

    More so because I am one, and I can’t get ANYWHERE with them, not even my family. I argue all day long and get nowhere.

    Yup! Although in my case it isn’t family (usually – got into a big argument with them years ago regarding the “ground zero mosque” and found out they don’t like being told they are arguing from bigotry) but after a co-worker insisted that “no black people are affected by racism anymore, they told me so*” and that “illegals get all the medical care they need for free” I don’t discuss shit with anybody at work.

    *I don’t know the exact percentage, but my workplace has a fair number of African Americans in highly-paid upper-level positions. It is possible that one of them might have said something that could be misconstrued as “I am not affected by racism” but I find it equally likely that, if any such conversation even took place, they just didn’t want to bother trying to explain the daily grind to a Fox conservative who has clearly already decided it doesn’t exist.

    ETA:

    I am sorry to say most of the white people I know basically have the opinion that since he wasn’t one of the “good ones” then he probably deserved it.

    And yet, as has been pointed out in one of these threads, jared fucking Loughner got safely loaded into a car, and that numbnuts kid walking around with a fucking shotgun basically got an escort home. He was safe in giving the cops attitude while armed….

  244. 244
    shortstop says:

    @different-church-lady: This really, really, really isn’t all about you.

  245. 245
    Jebediah, RBG says:

    @Another Holocene Human (now with new computer):

    They’re also set up to do all dispatching by computer so if you know what a location is but don’t have an address formatted identically to what’s in their computer

    Here, a friend was riding his bike on the bike path when someone started shooting at him. He tried calling 911 and explaining where he was (“on the Ballona Creek bike path, right by [I can’t remember which street, but he gave them a very precise location]) Because he couldn’t give a street address, (because fucking bike path!)
    they wouldn’t send anyone. Later went to Pacific Division and had a hell of a time getting them to let him file any kind of report.

  246. 246
    Groucho48 says:

    There was a press conference earlier, with the medical examiners hired by the family and with the family’s lawyer. These points were made:

    7:58 AM PT: From the press conference, saying the two shots to the head were both “back to front” and “supports what witnesses said,” and “that this officer should have been arrested.”
    8:11 AM PT: Says shot to lower arm “consistent” with either facing away or having arms up to surrender.
    8:13 AM PT: Dr. Baden says there was no evidence on Brown’s body of a struggle.

    http://www.nbcnews.com/storyli.....te>

    Sorry, can’t get link to work. The video should be available from many sources though.

  247. 247
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @Another Holocene Human (now with new computer): I tried to call in a minor wreck on the interstate one morning. The wreck happened at the top of a diamond interchange ramp; someone rear-ended the stopped car in front of them. The interchange was to a minor state highway, and there was no identifying sign that could be seen from three cars back on the ramp.

    You would think that saying “I’m on I-40 East at the interchange between 210 and I-95” would be sufficient. I was begging the dispatcher to get a map and follow I-40 from Raleigh toward Benson with her finger. She was so confused that I asked her where she was, thinking that my cell phone had connected me to 911 in another state. She finally got a supervisor when I told her I was going to back down the ramp and along the shoulder until I could see the fucking interchange sign and get her her fucking highway number.

    My only time calling 911 before that was when there was a fight in front of our townhouse community. Guy had blocked a woman’s car in our dead-end street with his, got out, and started was hitting her car with a baseball bat. Neither one lived on our street. I fully expected to see him shatter the car window and drag her out by her hair, but she finally got up the nerve to hop the curb and drive around his car to get away. 911 dispatcher flat-out refused to send anyone.

    I have not trusted the police to show up when needed since then.

  248. 248
    BobS says:

    @Another Holocene Human (now with new computer): What is it about Greenwald that causes Balloon Juice readers like you and Burnspbesq to lose their shit? For the record, the thread derailment you’re whining about was simply me responding to his relatively ignorant comment upthread.

    Your grasp of the obvious in American history is truly impressive — thank you for educating me that cops have always kicked ass on behalf of the privileged — my first hand experience with a baton and cuffs didn’t drive home the point. Once again, maybe if you take a minute to read what Greenwald wrote instead of continuing to comment under the influence of ignorance you’d realize he’s on your side of the issue.

  249. 249
    Cervantes says:

    @Another Holocene Human (now with new computer):

    What is it about Greenwald that his fans always engage in thread derails in order to aggrandize him?

    Sometimes I find that I profit from a careful reading of things instead of relying on biases, intuitions, and generalizations. Do you ever find the same?

    Greenwald like many libertarians has written on this issue but he ignores the root causes […] Libertarianism is about wanking and denying that racism exists or that it could ever possibly be addressed by state intervention, even though that’s the only thing that seems to be effective. […]

    That you don’t like what Greenwald says on the subject is fine by me — if you think he denies that racism matters, you aren’t reading carefully and that’s your problem, not mine — but unlike others, at least you aren’t criticizing him for not having written about the subject — so kudos to you for that.

  250. 250
    virginia says:

    Well, on the bright side, the response to this killing in Ferguson has been so blatantly mishandled and so obviously manipulated that, no, I don’t think the major miscreants — looking at you PD — are gong to get away with much of anything. These folks completely overshot their wad — the fallout for them ain’t going to be pretty.

    Why it’s necessary to get down on either Greenwald or Cole I don’t know. But that’s just me. A little respect goes a long way in making an argument. Cheers.

  251. 251
    LAC says:

    @BobS: could you give us a fucking break about fucking glen greenwald and his fucking opinions. Tell you what you should do. Go walk up to a black person and engage in a conversation about this. Spend a little less time going on and on about this dude and a little more time actually maybe being a part of a dialogue. You might learn something This isn’t about glen greenwald ok? For fucks sake…

  252. 252
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Cervantes:

    Who was “they” then? Who is “they” now?

    The police in Ferguson. Sorry, thought that was obvious since we were discussing whether or not the police were telling the truth about the events.

  253. 253
    BobS says:

    @LAC:I’m not exactly comforted by the fact that determined dumb-fucks like you are on my side of the political divide, but I’m gonna fucking try and phrase this so that you might have a fucking prayer of fucking understanding… I’ll tell you what you should do — go fuck yourself.
    I

  254. 254
    Mayken says:

    @Alison: Or for bleeding on their uniforms. http://www.thedailybeast.com/a.....y-lie.html

  255. 255
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Another Holocene Human (now with new computer):

    There are peaceful protestors who have obeyed curfews. There are protestors who deliberately broke them but who were non-violent. There are the usually criminals out there committing criminal acts but with the police behind a cordon of their own creating good luck investigating that shit, and then there are provocateurs wanting to kick off the revolution. And then there are the out of town looters.

    This right here. The one thing I would add is that you probably have people in that crowd who started off as peaceful protesters and then got pissed off when the police decided to bust heads instead of listening to people. Bringing in the state police was, unfortunately, too little, too late for those folks, who now see no reason why they shouldn’t defend themselves against the cops since no one else is going to defend them.

  256. 256
    LAC says:

    @BobS: you know what? go back to defending greenwald. You seem to have a better grasp of that discussion. You can’t imagine how sad it is that you may be on the same political spectrum because you are focusing on the wrong thing. Now that’s a dumbfuck.

  257. 257
    Elie says:

    To me, from the information in the autopsy photos, it appears that he was shot in the right forearm with the arm extended OR up in surrender. He was shot through the top of the head which may have occurred while falling forward.

    Wilson should be immediately arrested

  258. 258
    Cervantes says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    @Cervantes:Who was “they” then? Who is “they” now?

    The police in Ferguson. Sorry, thought that was obvious since we were discussing whether or not the police were telling the truth about the events.

    Thanks for stating the, well, the obvious — but have there not been different police forces involved at different times? So when you ask someone the following:

    Why is your assumption that they were acting in bad faith a week ago, but are acting in good faith now?

    Might it not be relevant to keep track of your “they” to see if the question makes sense?

  259. 259
    wasabi gasp says:

    @sharl:

    regardless of whether any of those are applicable or not to the final minutes of Michael Brown – should not carry the death sentence

    I was implying the possibility of suicide by cop. That does carry the death sentence.

  260. 260
    sharl says:

    @wasabi gasp: Ah, I missed that implication. Nothing has come out about suicidal tendencies, and even if he had those, the cops shouldn’t oblige, especially when no one else is in danger. But I see what you were getting at now. Thanks for responding.

  261. 261
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Cervantes:

    Not really — the police all seem to be acting under the same orders to break up the protests and conceal information from the press, so at this point I’m not sure I see much value in differentiating between them. Note that in one of the links above, it was a state police spokesperson who first claimed that they had only used smoke bombs on the crowd and then later admitted they used tear gas as well.

  262. 262
    Cervantes says:

    @Mnemosyne: You may not see much value in the distinction — but others might, and this may be the answer to your question.

    (You’re welcome.)

  263. 263
    Elie says:

    @gwangung:

    It is likely he had his arms up rather than reaching for the gun as was suggested by some. The wounds are on the inside of his forearms. there was no mention of the angle of the entry wounds…. Other alternative was running which could place forearms facing back towards the shooter. Not sure how they would be sure that all wounds were from the front since it would be possible to shoot the inner part of the forearm with the person moving away with his back to the shooter (in my opinion)

  264. 264
    henqiguai says:

    @Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism (#247):

    I have not trusted the police to show up when needed since then.

    Welcome to Black America…

  265. 265
    Cervantes says:

    @henqiguai:

    Welcome to Black America…

    If I may …

    The second thought streaming from the death-ship and the curving river is the thought of the older South,—the sincere and passionate belief that somewhere between men and cattle, God created a tertium quid, and called it a Negro,—a clownish, simple creature, at times even lovable within its limitations, but straitly foreordained to walk within the Veil. To be sure, behind the thought lurks the afterthought,—some of them with favoring chance might become men, but in sheer self-defence we dare not let them, and we build about them walls so high, and hang between them and the light a veil so thick, that they shall not even think of breaking through.

    I took that from “Of the Training of Black Men,” as it appeared in the Atlantic Monthly, 90 (1902): pp. 289-297. The author is, of course, W. E. B. Du Bois.

    If anything, things are worse now than that passage allows.

  266. 266
    Cervantes says:

    @sharl: Thanks. I appreciate his last paragraph’s connection between what the Zionists did to Palestinians and what Europeans did to the Jews. Even with that, though, I do have to agree with you; it’s a close-run thing.

    @raven: Who can disagree with “Call it what it is”? I do see what you mean there — but not as clearly do I see the connection to what you wrote previously. Still, thanks for the response.

Comments are closed.