By Any Other Name

In the news again, the killing of another black man, a man without a gun, deprived of his life for what?  Are there any words that can make this right? As we ponder the details in facts that are now being disputed, we should not lose sight of key elements in this latest shooting that are not. The killing of Michael Brown by a police officer, sworn to protect and defend, took the life of an unarmed man.

Concerning the grieving community and loss of this young man, have the Ferguson police acted in the interest of justice for all? Were family members given information needed at the occasion of their loss? Why was the police officer allowed to go free without booking? Were photos taken immediately of all parties, and key witness accounts documented at the scene of the crime? If this armed police officer felt threatened after he drove his car in front of the two young men, then why didn’t he call for back-up? What would have justified shooting Michael Brown over six times, killing him with a bullet through the top of his head, execution style? What is the history of this police officer prior to being sworn in? We are hearing information about the deceased man who cannot defend himself … why not more than hearsay about the officer who can defend himself?

An unarmed man is dead … shot to death by a police officer that stopped him because he was walking in the middle of the street. Other questions come to mind:

What prompted the use of deadly force on a young man who had surrendered with his arms in the air according to all witness accounts?

Why were photos not taken of all parties at the scene, at the time of the crime in order to protect the officer in a court of law, since Officer Wilson says he was attacked? Evidence produced untimely, cannot be taken without some pause as secondary to evidence at the scene and time of the crime.

Why were paramedics not allowed to attempt a resuscitation as this young man lay on the street for hours and with no examination for vital signs?

Many of the comments given in support of Darren Wilson seem to be prompted by fear, fear that has the effect of dehumanizing his victim, and associating Michael with the ”crime” of being black. Have we progressed so little that simply by having a different color of skin, de facto, a young man shall still have no right to justice in a country that has suffered this shame too long? Perhaps our history of treatment toward black men and women has finally come to a standstill and racist comments will finally be shown the door with all the shame due them.

Darren Wilson has a right to a fair trial … more than he gave Michael Brown; but he must go to trial for justice to be had; and there can be no justice for Michael Brown without it.  One thing is for certain, justice can never be had at the point of a gun; and no words will make it right.

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Author: Anita Suzanne Dedman-Tillemans

For love of wilderness.