Carl Bankston took me to task for writing, in this post about the failures to indict the killers of Michael Brown and Eric Garner as though they were equivalent, and "Moltar" and "gbpeters" criticized the post as biased.
Yesterday, these readers were proven right with regard to The Brown case, at least in my mind. I have not slogged through the entire DOJ report, but I have read enough to convince me that there truly was no case against Officer Wilson.
I still find the killing tragic and unconscionable. The fact that an unarmed teenager was legally shot to death in a supposedly civilized country, in the 21st century, is barbaric. It could not have happened this way in most developed countries. But it wasn't indictable.
I still find the comments about how Brown was "stupid" and "not an angel" to be both insensitive and irrelevant. He was 18 years old. He was someone's son, a flawed human being as we all are, acting irrationally for reasons we may never understand. (When I speculated to my son that he might have been high, he responded, "That is a BS, racist, Fox News explanation." But seriously, if you don't know (or have never been) an adolescent who did something incredibly stupid while under the influence of a substance, then we must have grown up on different planets.) No one deserves to be killed for that, especially not an adolescent. But again, while I might believe that certain laws need to be changed, they haven't been, and so Officer Wilson was apparently acting lawfully.
Many of the comments people leave on my posts, both agreeing and disagreeing with them (and, on this post, kindly correcting my misremembering of an episode in a film), are respectful, and I appreciate the opportunity to learn from others' differing experiences and thought processes. Others, though, read as patronizing (in this case, making assumptions about my emotional makeup and telling me I'm wrong to feel that way; assuming I'm unfamiliar with the basic facts of a case I am writing about; or telling me a statement is "risible" without explaining why), and it is sometimes difficult to take them seriously for this reason. Sort of the way it is hard to see a confused and vulnerable teenager under the sullenness and defiance. There we're valid points made, though, and I want to acknowledge that.
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