Several Factors Caused U.S. To Explode in Aftermath of #MikeBrown Police Murder

F2FA August 21, 2014


In the Associated Press’ article, entitled, “Many Police Killings, But Only Ferguson Explodes,” journalist Jesse Washington looks at why Ferguson, Mo., exploded, after 18-year-old Michael Brown (pictured below) was murdered, when so many other unarmed Black men have been murdered by police across the United States.

RELATED: Why #MichaelBrown Matters : Unarmed Blacks Repeatedly Killed By Police, ‘Scared’ Citizens In America

Michael Brown

In the last month or so, there has been at least three murders of Black unarmed men.

The Associated Press reports:

“It is not all that unusual for an unarmed black person to be killed by police. There are no reliable national statistics on people of any race killed by police, but anecdotal reports count significant numbers. One study, relying on Internet searches of media reports, found 18 unarmed black people killed by police and security personnel in the first three months of 2012, including Trayvon Martin.

More recently:

On July 17, Eric Garner was killed by a chokehold after an arrest for illegally selling loose cigarettes in New York City.

On Aug. 5, John Crawford III was killed while handling a toy gun in a Wal-Mart outside Dayton, Ohio.

On Aug. 11, Ezell Ford, a mentally disabled man, was shot dead in South Los Angeles.

The circumstances of each case are different, of course, and investigations continue.”

But Brown’s murder represented a tipping point for the Black community who generally feel that enough is enough. History Professor Blair L.M. Kelley explained, “It feels like a turning point. I think because so many Black men die at the hands of the state.”

But it is even more than that. For the people of Ferguson — and for Blacks across the country — it was the timing and the way Brown was murdered that ignited a country against the targeting of Blacks and police brutality.

The Associated Press reports:

The response to Brown’s death turned violent because of a convergence of factors, observers say, including the stark nature of the killing in broad daylight, an aggressive police response to protests, a mainly black city being run by white officials – and the cumulative effect of killing after killing after killing of unarmed black males.

“People are tired of it,” said Kevin Powell, president of the BK Nation advocacy group, who organized peaceful protests after the Florida neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman was found innocent in Martin’s killing.

Kelley and Powell both said that the nature of Brown’s killing fueled anger: He was shot at least six times in broad daylight, in the middle of the street, in his own housing complex. Then his body lay in the street for hours, uncovered, in a pool of blood, before being taken away.

“There were more than 100 people there looking at his body,” Kelley said.

See photos of #MikeBrown protests across the United States here:


Last Edited by:Abena Agyeman-Fisher Updated: June 19, 2018


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