I’ve been pretty much silent about the events in Ferguson. Kinda strange for a wordy man like me to be so silent, right? After all, I participated in National Novel Writing Month and have so far written 17,000 words on a Sci-fi novel entitled “Silicon Soul” about a fictional America in which computers become human. Strange that I’d not write a single word about a real America in which humans aren’t being treated as if they are fully human.
I’ve kept my silence with the assumption that it allows the voices of People of Color to be heard more clearly.
In case you’ve not read any of these voices here are two:
That said, this blog is read by some folk for whom I’m the closest thing to a voice of color they’re willing to read (I know, right!).
So, two quick points as a repost to the things you all consistently say on social media, and then I’ll get back out of the way.
1. In order to believe Darren Wilson’s version of events you’d almost have to assume Michael Brown is an alien—people don’t act like that.
2. Quit with the being so shocked by rioting already.
I was in Eugene, Oregon when the Ducks lost a big game—they drove a meter maid car into a bonfire and set off a bomb outside the local Starbucks.
For that matter, I was in Philadelphia when the Phillies won their big game; all the commentators were so overjoyed that there was “only” $100,000 worth of property damage… people did that much damage to their city to honor a sports team’s win.
The folk in Ferguson are horrified and angry that a young man in their community was killed and there was no trial. They are horrified and angry at an ongoing pattern of young black kids getting killed by cops and vigilantes.
I want to be clear, I think rioting is stupid and destructive, but if we’re going on the assumption that what happened in Eugene and Philly after those sports games was essentially good clean fun, and as a society we do, then the only logical conclusion you can come to is that the rioting in Ferguson is a totally legitimate response to collective horror and anger… unless of course you want to say white rioting is acceptable and black rioting is not.