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What The Ferguson Grand Jury Decision Really Means

All signs indicate a grand jury verdict is imminent on the case of whether Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson should face formal charges for the death of 18 year-old Michael Brown.

The fact that the Missouri Governor has already declared a state of emergency and is planning to bring in the National Guard to quell civil unrest indicates that many believe Officer Wilson will be set free. I hope I am wrong on that and that the case at least merits going to a full jury. If he is innocent, let that come out at a fair trial.

Protesters have been bracing themselves in Ferguson and all across the country for unfortunately what is the typical outcome in America when it comes to a situation like this, a "scary," demonized black male against a white police officer. According to Sharpton’s group, The National Action Network, there will be protests all across the country at federal courthouses once the verdict is announced. 

I do agree that the protestors will have every intent of making noise and drawing attention to their feelings and cause, but that looting, violence and other mayhem is not on the agenda. The media loves to focus on incidents like that because it certainly makes for interesting footage, but that stuff is usually on the fringe of protests and not done by those focused on the issue at hand. Sadly, the rioters and looters give a bad name to the protest as a whole, which is tragic, since protesters have legitimate reasons to be angry. And those reasons should be heard, rather than the spectacle of violence.

That issue is that in a country with so many years of unfair justice toward blacks, it is clear that no one has any real faith that the system is ever balanced and fair. When the gut feeling, from the Governor’s Office to the people on the ground in Ferguson and elsewhere, already expects that nothing will be done to Officer Wilson for shooting an unarmed black teenager, it is sad testament to how broken the system is.

I don’t think anyone anywhere really thinks Officer Wilson is in trouble here. There’s just too much history in his favor. So get ready for some interesting news cycles, but don’t expect much difference in the way what we call justice is served.


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