What we’re reading: Ferguson edition

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Today, BlogDH lends it platform to the coverage of the events in Ferguson, Missouri in the wake of the Grand Jury’s decision not to indict officer Darren Wilson in the death of Michael Brown.

We start with the fundamentals: how was the decision reached? The Washington Post provides insight into the process of how grand juries in Missouri work. If you want to read any of the material that the Grand Jury looked at in the past months, the New York Times has an interactive feature containing the documents released by the county prosecutor.

For coverage of the protests taking place after the decision was announced, the Root does straight reporting on how the police force responded last night in their article “61 Arrested, 10 Businesses Destroyed, 150 Shots Fired.” On the other hand, Mic.com uses 20 photos to portray a much more civilian-centered account of the protests in Ferguson. Spoiler alert: the police force in St. Louis have a very different interpretation of the protests than the civilian protesters do.

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Much of the news coverage is centered around the resulting violent protests. Obama’s address to the nation asked for a peaceful response after the Grand Jury’s decision was released. The Huffington Post contrasts Ferguson with civil unrest around the nation that has nothing to do with politics, such as the scene of wreckage in San Francisco after the Giants won the World Series. In international coverage, Palestinians have been tweeting advice to protesters in the states on how to deal with tear gas.

Moving on from reporting, we look to analyses and media centered responses. FiveThirtyEight details why it is so unusual for a Grand Jury not to indict the accused, except in the case of police officers standing trial. The Root speaks to legal expert and attorney Eric Guster about the possibilities for bringing Darren Wilson up on civil charges, as the past few months have only held deliberations over criminal charges.

Some important opinions articles on the subject of race relations are being recycled due to continuing relevance. In August, Carol Anderson wrote an opinions piece in the Washington Post on why black rage against an unjust system is ruthlessly bashed in the media, while white rage against progress and equality is backed by the courts and the government. The Atlantic just bumped a powerful features piece called “The Case for Reparations: Two hundred and fifty years of slavery. Ninety years of Jim Crow. Sixty years of separate but equal. Thirty-five years of racist housing policy. Until we reckon with our compounding moral debts, America will never be whole.”

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Another article from The Atlantic details the difficulty inherent in white people attempting to understand the situation in FergusonQuartz takes a look into the world of statistics to highlight a similar problem: people with different beliefs on the issue are “tweeting right past each other.”

If you are a white person searching for ways to not be part of the problem, Quartz also published an article of 12 things white people can do to help the situation (posting sporadic Facebook statuses is not among them). Olivia Cole writes a piece in the Huffington Post about how to deal with trolls surrounding the trial. She outlines ten different kinds of trolls, such as the “don’t make this a race issue!” troll and the “violence begets more violence” troll.

Many of these sources may already be flooding your newsfeed, so you might wonder why we are devoting this space to echoing the discussion. We are doing this because we believe that it is critical for everyone to engage with this issue. It is our privilege as a publication to have some effect on what people on campus read, and today you should be reading about Ferguson. There are ample sources for you to research the situation, educate yourself, and discover how you can do more to stop the immense injustice in this country. To get involved, try donating to funds for the protestors in Ferguson, boycotting Black Friday, and showing up at local protests. Use every tool in your arsenal.

Black Lives Matter.

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4 Comments

  1. John

    If Black lives matter, why no outrage for the 243 dead Black lives in Chicago since the Gentle Giant was executed?

    Having only gotten through about half of the evidence released in the Michael Brown case, I can not draw a conclusion either way yet, what I can conclude though, there is very little White on Black violence being committed in America today, but there is a landslide of Black on White and Black on Black crime, a veritable pandemic of crime.

    Why is this not the lead story on every newspaper? Answer that question and you might have an answer to other questions.

  2. John

    What happened to my post? It not fit your narrative?

    This is what I have spent 250k for my child to attend? A school that practices thought policing?

  3. John

    Yup, that is some fine journalistic integrity right there, stifle the other side. Mao and Stalin would be proud, somehow, I think that that might bother you quite as much as I was hoping it would.

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