Here are some Al-Jazeera journalists being tear gassed in Ferguson last night. If they don’t count, how about the Wesley Lowery from the Washington Post, who was arrested last night, making Ferguson and Tehran the two places where Post reporters have been arrested this year.
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There’s a police coup going on right now in Ferguson, Mo.
@amk: Good read.
SING IT WITH ME BOYS!
A’HM PROUUUD TA BE AN AAAAAAAA-MURIKIN WHERE AT LEASE AH KNOW A’HM FREEEE
I would guess the only thing worse than having your kid shot down in the street for doing nothing is to have that happen… and have the incident get buried.
Which I’m sure has happened.
This time, the Ferguson police seem determined to prove how screwed up they are to the entire world. Which to my mind indicates they’ve been doing this kind of thing for quite a while and are now flabbergasted they are being called to account.
My hunch is that Jay Nixon was hoping this situation would simmer down on its own and he wouldn’t have to get involved. His recent tepid statement suggests that he finally realizes he can’t hide from this. I hope that means something positive will happen soon.
Hey, that’s MY line! Heh….
The merciful thing about this administration is that piece of corn pone dreck has done gone and disappeared.
@Botsplainer: Go to a small-town Fourth of July celebration sometime. It’s alive and well, or has been replaced by the Toby Keith boot-in-the-ass song, which is worse.
That’s why there are protests to begin with. If there wasn’t institutional racism to begin with, this probably wouldn’t be happening.
I’m curious as to how the crowd will react to his presence, and if his security detail can get the PD goons to settle down for his visit.
I’d like to think he’ll follow up with a declaration of emergency and the announcement of deployment of as many NG units as are necessary to keep the police away from the citizenry.
I have not been to a game since they force their new stadium costs onto taxpayers but have occasionally heard that the Minnesota Twins(Tloses) have used it during the 7th inning stretch once in a great while. They also go with Gawd Bless ‘Murica sometimes. Both make me want to retch. Jingoism at it’s musical very worst.
Iowa Old Lady
Racism, stupidity, and an oversupply of armaments on display.
@Botsplainer: I’m not expecting much.
i live close to dallas, texas so the news i get is from there. the local news stations are headlining stories about ferguson with things like “rioting continues,” “violent protests continue,” and “police working to restrain rioting.” the local fox affiliate is cherrypicking tweets about molotov cocktails and armed rioters shooting at police. they must be tailoring their coverage to their audience, more’s the pity.
Welcome to Amerika. The revolution will not be televised.
I think events yesterday were a game changer in terms of public perception of the situation. I just hope that no one gets killed before it’s all over.
@Matt McIrvin: He’s doing halftime at a Georgia game this year.
Sounds like the governor needs to step in here and get this mess under control. He could start by announcing a thorough investigation, not only into the Brown killing but into the police response to the protests. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch has some good recommendations here.
To address the immediate situation, he could announce that the cops are warehousing the military style hardware, will back off while peaceful protests are underway and will respond to civil unrest like a police force instead of an occupying army. The cops escalated this. The cops must deescalate it.
Never understood why God Bless America was chosen to be sung by Congress right after 9-11. It’s weak, sappy shit, kinda like that insipid praise music.
I wanted them to go with something stirring – the Battle Hymn of the Republic you want whoop ass historical appropriate to the moment.
@Iowa Old Lady: Yes. As I said last night this is literally my backyard. I could be in Ferguson in 20 minutes or so. All this pains me. I’ve said that St. Louis, and the media is now starting to talk about it, is a VERY segregated city even in 2014. It is sad how bad it is. You sit me down with a map and I can say, “this area is black, this area white.” Anybody that lives in this area and has their eyes open knows this is the case.
And in many cases, even in the “black” areas white folks (which I am one) are still in power.
So happy to see a few media outlets are pointing out that the town of Ferguson is 69% AA. Of the 53 police officers, 3 are AA. The mayor is white. The police chief is white. One AA on the city council. None on the school board.
Is it any wonder a AA getting gunned down in the street might have been a spark for much of the community to get really pissed off?
@Matt McIrvin: Why don’t they just go ahead and sing “Dixie”? You know they want to.
Isn’t that the anthem of the Northern Aggressors? I can see why they would shun it.
I have this secret side fantasy – that some puffy-faced pasty goober suburbanite Call of Duty cosplayer decides that nobody is going to be disrupting his area of authority and starts barking commands at the governor.
The cops in Ferguson were never paid to protect it, but to contain it. If this is an escalation of anything, it is their containment policy.
@Mustang Bobby: @Matt McIrvin: Why don’t they just go ahead and sing “Dixie”? You know they want to.
Yeah, I’ve always thought the exclusionist message of “God Bless America” was barely a half step removed from “Dixie.” It’s the American Horst Wessel Lied, basically. Used to be we only whipped it out when it was time to go crush some brown or yellow people though, not at baseball games. That’s just indecent.
Lowery was interviewed on NPR this morning:
The greatest comment ever, at Reason’s Hit and Run:
The tie for the greatest internet quote, also from Hit and Run:
@Botsplainer: Great in what way – perhaps the naivete of the poster in assuming that those militia types wouldn’t JOIN IN on the oppression?
This interview of a gunshop/tattoo shop owner who is also a St Louis County firefighter is interesting. Obviously this Adam Jones dude is a rightwing nutbag who keeps trying to put words int he dudes mouth but the firefighter has an account of how he, his partner and some friends stood in front of their shop during Sunday’s looting and the looters just passed them by. The firefighter sees it more as a community against the police.
The comments look to have been written by the Ferguson Police PR team
Irving Berlin wrote some great songs, but God Bless America is NOT one of them.
@Botsplainer: #RANPaul nearly broke his neck running AWAY from a DREAMER – he’s not about to go traipsing down to MO to defend black people, and wouldn’t even if it were the Feds doing this. Get real.
@Botsplainer: yeah. Why don’t we invite ISIS, too. Because what the neighborhood really needs is guaranteed fatalities. So far there haven’t been enough fatalities.
Just read them. “The police were nothing but courteous.” Good grief.
I tend to over think things. I think most people do and don’t break things down to the most basic. Lets put everything that has happened in Ferguson aside and get to the core. This all started cause it is said Michael Brown was walking down the middle of the street. Not a highway, but a residential street. Is that even a crime or illegal?
I love my car but tend to walk or ride my mountain bike most places in my small rural town. I am not a lawyer nor anything close to a legal expert, but it is my understanding as somebody on foot or on my bike I have the same “right of way” as a car does. Almost nobody in a car treats me that way, but alas did Brown even break a law to start his encounter with police in the first place?
Yeah – the stunning lack of self awareness.
@Ben Cisco: One of my tea nut relations, who is a reliable barometer of current reicht wing memes, was on FB yammering about the “no-fly” zone and that the Bill of Rights will be cancelled next. Yep, it’s all Obummer’s false flag operation.
@debbie: I’m also seeing a lot of comments on the web about how Brown and his friend were “assaulting” the police officer and he was only defending himself. This is turning into Trayvon Martin all over again. The pollce got the story out that the officer had facial injuries and now it’s an accepted fact (although I’m not sure how two people walking down the street manage to “assault” a police officer riding in his car).
Still no reporting on how it’s possible that there is only one black person on that towns council. I mean a smart well intentioned white politician can suit an area of mostly black residents better than a specific black politician that they don’t trust or agree with……but unless some serious vote suppression is going on I can’t see the imbalance being that lopsided. Whatever caused that composition lead to this……violent dumbness. This council/mayor/police chief group simply have no idea what to do but are unable to face that one of their cops just murdered someone and needs to be charged and on trial. All of their not addressing the first cause of the crisis with facts or normal investigative action we expect of a POLICE force implies guilt. I normally wait to judge and give the police the benefit of the doubt. In this case they don’t even seem to be going through the motions. The whole department seems to need to be fired because they aren’t acting like they even know how to fake being police. Over militarized is just part of the problem. these useless idiots didn’t preserve the scene, question witnesses, follow normal laws. Then they act provacative and cause problems instead of solving them. Excuse me, this isn’t meet minimum employment standards.
I’d like to see a journalist publish what the laws are for that state/count/town to recall or remove from office or when the next election is due…..whatevers fastest and also how to replace them with more honest representation.
@Tommy: this is one of my pet peeves, every damn road has to be a freeway made for the efficient travel of motor traffic. That is totally wrong, neighborhood streets should be for people first, and car traffic should be slow and deferential to people. But we have lost sight of that in the U.S. It is turning around, very slowly.
@Botsplainer: Apparently DougJ found enough free time to post comments!
@Tommy: This started long before Michael Brown stepped out onto that street.
another witness, and her account mirrors the first witnesses’ account
Witnesses to Michael Brown’s shooting detail his last minutes
By Ben Brumfield and Yon Pomrenze, CNN
updated 8:13 AM EDT, Thu August 14, 2014
Ferguson, Missouri (CNN) — While Michael Brown appeared to tussle with an officer before he was shot dead, he didn’t enter the police cruiser as authorities claim he did, two witnesses told CNN.
The women’s accounts corroborate that of a previous witness, all three of whom said the officer fatally shot the unarmed teen.
Police have said the black 18-year-old died in a dangerous struggle after trying to grab the officer’s weapon. Not so, say the witnesses.
“It looked as if Michael was pushing off and the cop was trying to pull him in,” Tiffany Mitchell told CNN on Wednesday night.
This came across my feed this morning. Haven’t read it, but sounds amusing.
Good to see you back posting.
@Eric U.: Huge pet peeve of mine as well Eric. I live in the small rural town I grew up in. But lived in DC for almost two decades before I moved back. I got very used to walking and public transportation. I think most folks that live in the inner city of a large metro area understand. Often it was faster to walk then try and drive and find a parking spot. Surly cheaper.
So when I moved back here I took that habit of walking and using my bike to get around. Folks think I am crazy. Heck my state (IL) has some pretty good public transportation where I live. My friends and family members think I am losing it that I use them. They are like you have a $40,000 car, why not use it?
I am like my legs work. I enjoy walking. And maybe, I don’t know, walking is good for the body and soul.
I think Anon just released the name of the murdering cop. Waiting for confirmation.
@rikyrah: Good morning right back at yeah.
Anonymous has just released the name of the officer who murdered Michael Brown. I will refrain from posting the name until it’s verified some place else than twitter.
@beth: leaned in close enough to be grabbed and pulled in (after said policemAn pretended to be hard of hearing and asked them to repeat what they said). I guess that’s how you assault a cop in a vehicle.
What the cop was going to do with Brown, who knows? Pull him through the window?
I’ve heard that locals knew of this officer and that he had a reputation for pointless harassment. We had a cop like this when I was growing up — not to the point of murder, but capable of making every kid’s life miserable. He was always picking on boys and handing out bogus tickets. Our parents tried registering complaints with City Hall, but it did no good and only stopped when he retired.
@Suffern ACE: I am going to become a broken record today and keep asking the same basic question I just asked before, is walking down the middle of a residential street even a crime? Look I can totally see and understand if I was walking down the middle of the street a cop pulling up beside me and saying “hey dude, there is a sidewalk you can use, it would be safer.” But if I didn’t listen, is that even a crime?
Damn,Michael McDonald is from Ferguson.
@Tommy: Just curious if you might know whether or not this is true, but allegedly one version of the county budget for next year cuts the SWAT team money. I conjecture that the county has a bunch of people assigned to the SWAT team as their main job description and that somebody thinks having that number of people as basically full-time SWAT is too expensive.
Maybe I’m too cynical.
is walking down the middle of a residential street even a crime?
I do it every morning. From time to time a cop will drive by, but he just waves and smiles.
Great way for the Ferguson police, the St. Louis County police and DA to wind up with rotten egg on their faces, thereby demonstrating their brilliance.
An idiot group of hackers reveals what should have been announced no later than Monday.
@Original Lee: I do not know. I am on the IL side of St. Louis. I find it hard to follow what is going on in my county so I can’t follow other communities :).
I always wanted to be him.
So Anonymous released what they think is the killer cop’s name.
(Edit: This is what I get for not refreshing the page for a long time.)
@Tommy: OK, thanks. I don’t know many people in the area; independent verification of this stuff is hard.
It’s nice that Post management actually took notice of one of their reporters being arrested, but as far as editorializing against a militarized reaction against civil protest…they didn’t say all that much about the suppression of the Occupy protests. They’re sure as hell not going to be fussed about anything that happens to Al Jazeera reporters. As far as the cops are concerned, reporters are almost as much the enemy as the protesters.
“I WILL HAVE ORDER!” – Dolores Umbridge
If that’s true, how is that different than Cliven Bundy and his people pointing guns at federal law enforcement?
According to that logic, Brown should instead have pointed a gun at the officer and things would have been A-OK.
@debbie: Agreed. I just did it an hour ago. I do it daily. My understanding as a pedestrian if I am on foot, bike, heck a unicycle I have the same “right of way” as a car. As when I first noted this and/or asked this question we need to dial things back to the basics. The darn kid wasn’t even breaking the law. So this altercation, if there was one between Brown and the cop should have never happened in the first place. To me that is an important point in the whole affair.
@Suffern ACE: Here’s my theory (just speculation with no evidence other than witness accounts I heard on TV and years of observation of how people act). I think the cop probably rudely yelled at the kids to get off the road, which angered the kids — and maybe even prompted them to mouth off or at least behave dismissively to the cop.
This enraged the cop, who then pulled his vehicle into their path and flung the door open in a huff to confront them. The door bounced off the kids (or at least Brown), which the kids perceived as an assault, then the door bounced back onto the cop, which he perceived as an assault. The door might have even knocked Brown off balance, causing him to grab it to regain his footing, which the already enraged cop would find doubly threatening and enraging.
And the whole situation went to shit from there. Nothing could possibly excuse the cop’s subsequent actions if what the witnesses said is true, and they seem credible to me. But this could explain how 2 unarmed kids + 1 shitty cop = 1 dead kid.
Gov. Nixon is so fucking done. His political career is over, so he might as well do the right thing by the citizens of Ferguson.
I suppose it could be on the books as a misdemeanor. But no matter whether, or how, it is classified, it does not require deadly force.
That is because you are a reasonable man. The account of the cop in Ferguson (by Brown’s friend who was walking with him) is that the cop’s initial communication was yelling and cursing. Followed by deadly force.
@Original Lee: St. Louis is a very, very hard place to understand. You have St. Louis the city. But you also have St. Louis County (which Ferguson is a part of). Of course they totally overlap. There has been for a decade plus an ongoing fight between the two for funding, well you name it.
I might live in IL but all my media comes from St. Louis (feels like I live there when I don’t). I listen to the local NPR station and they try to explain and honestly I can’t wrap my mind around it. It is a total cluster fuck. But let me try. The city of St. Louis is not doing well. The County of St. Louis, the burbs all around it, doing pretty well. There is this tension and anger that the County needs to support the City. That if the City of St. Louis wasn’t there the burbs, or the County wouldn’t be there as well.
So in a somewhat long winded way that maybe confused more then informed, I would be very surprised that there were any budget cuts to police in St. Louis County.
Antonio French is free…and yet, nobody can explain why he was arrested.
FERGUSON • St. Louis Alderman Antonio French emerged Thursday morning from a night in jail after his arrest at the Ferguson protests to say that the police officers’ “heavy-handed” approach on the streets is making the situation worse.
French said he has no documentation that says why he was arrested, and that he was released about 7 a.m. today without having to post any bail.
No police spokesman was available to explain why French was arrested.
French said he should never have been locked up, nor should the dozen or so others at the jail overnight.
“Inside that jail is nothing but peacekeepers,” he said. “They rounded up the wrong people … reverends, young people organizing the peace effort.”
Police arrested about a dozen people Wednesday night, including French and two national reporters. Police used tear gas and sonic cannons to disperse the crowds. Today, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon is scheduled to visit Ferguson in the wake of the growing protests.
A lot of times if people don’t comply and they have already decided to arrest someone for something, they want to add “resisting” so they make some move where they are attempting to physically detain the person, who then resists, and then they have “resisting” which is often much more serious than whatever they could have charged them with in the first place.
Young men almost always “resist”, because the bar is so low. The charge has become meaningless here. It’s a routine add-on. It drives me fucking crazy because it has basically come to mean “I now have a reason to charge you with something that isn’t embarrassingly minor”.
Your supposition makes a lot of sense to me.
RIP Michael Brown. I hope your family gets justice — it must — and if this incident persuades more communities to turn their police back into community peace officers and away from GI Joe wannabes, so much the better.
Good to see you back, dude. Did not realize you lived so close to Ferguson. Have appreciated your input on local issues in St. Louis city and county.
More from rikyrah’s StLo story on Alderman French:
I am shocked that this is happening. Is the rest of this year going to be a long hot summer?
It’s helpful for even the most naive (raises own hand) to see that the police are out of control, which is probably why the story wasn’t getting much play until national news reporters (among others) started getting the abuse.
@Elizabelle: The governor needs to nut up and call a halt to this occupying army approach. Clearly the local cops don’t get it.
@debbie: We had a cop like this too, in my small town. He ended up shot in the stomach by “unknown persons” and forced to retire. Oh, and his children were the biggest delinquents around.
@Elizabelle: Thanks for the nice comment. Glad to be back :)!
St. Louis is on a downward spiral that pains me. My friends from DC will come visit me and they want to see the Arch. They see it, touch it, and start to walk away. I am like dude, you realize we have to go under. They are like what? I explain that under the Arch is a huge multiple level museum. Detailing our nations expansion to the west. They are like I didn’t know that, and I just say yes, I know.
Then I take them to Forest Park. People often talk about Central Park in NYC as the best of the best. The largest city park in the country. The largest city park in the country is actually Forest Park. It has a Natural History museum, art gallery (which rocks), zoo, the MUNY (live theater and musical preformed outdoors), science museum among many other things. In the heart of the city.
All of it is free.
They leave saying my gosh I see why you live here. We didn’t know why you’d want to live here after living in DC. I am like there is much I miss, but St. Louis kind of rocks. Just sad it seems others don’t feel the same, cause as I introed with, the city is not doing well.
it was a republican congress
they sang Dixie, not the battle hymn of the republic
and they don’t know the words to “the army goes rolling along”
It makes me sad to see suburbs desert the cities that birthed them. Cities have a (positive!) culture all their own.
I’d like to see more regional cost-sharing, because cities are a treasure.
Detroit is famous as “ruin porn.” I did not realize St. Louis was competing for that list too. Need to start following urban issues news more carefully. Have kind of zoned out for a year or two.
(although I’m not sure how two people walking down the street manage to “assault” a police officer riding in his car).
Doncha know that blahs have extra-special mind powers and can do so much with just a thought! Don’t need no physical contact, thoughts are enough.
Yeah. Governor Nixon has been slow off the mark. Can see giving the locals a chance to right the situation, but clearly they aren’t up to it. (Not to mention they started it, and exacerbated from there.)
@Elizabelle: St. Louis isn’t Detroit nor Cleveland yet. One of my best clients is in Cleveland. Flew out to see him last year. He drove me around (he is a hippie liberal) for what seemed like mile after mile with nothing but huge deserted buildings. Former factories. You see the video on TV, but in person it went to another level for me. It wasn’t block after block. It was mile after mile. He kept saying we used to make stuff, we don’t anymore.
You said you zoned out for a few years. Until this I am not sure I was zoned in at all to be honest.
I mentioned this last night. St. Louis was the fourth largest city in the nation when we hosted the World’s Fair in 1904. Not even a top 50 city anymore. Losing around 15,000 citizens a year. About to drop below 500,000. Ponder that for a second…..
I will end with this. A few years ago a client of mine asked me to attend a conference in St. Louis on his behalf. Cause well I live right outside of St. Louis and it was cheaper to just send me. The attendees were owners of CPA firms in mid-to-small towns. They saw my name badge and I was from St. Louis. Asked me to show them around. They wanted a walking tour.
We are about as downtown as downtown gets in this high-end hotel. We head out for the walk at about 8 PM. They said things like “where are the people?” “Does anybody live in this city?” My favorite comment in a non-positive manner was this dude from Wichita, KS. Your “big” city is boring, there is more going on any day of the week then here ….
We’re lucky here in Amurka, we dont need reporters, because we can get the story from Police Chief Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson and his ilk.
The business district in Richmond, VA, can be a ghost town after hours.
St. Lo’s got to have (a few!) happening evening spots.
But it is a shame to see those lovely parks and urban architecture used only during non-Vampire hours.
Long time lurker here…
I grew up a couple of miles from Ferguson and lived there for awhile. I always thought of it as a normal, middle-of-the-road burb stuck is a medium sized city (well, county actually).
I am shocked to see what is going on just a few miles from where I live. Even more shocked to see how the police are handling this situation. It saddens me to see this brutality and hyper-militarized over reaction by the police. The Ferguson area has had a reputation for racism for as long as I can remember. Getting pulled over for a DWB is a real thing in that little township.
@Tommy: I was actually born in St. Louis, but I’ve never been back there since I was a baby, and I don’t know the city at all. Should probably visit sometime before it deteriorates any further.