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Ferguson, Missouri has become a symbol for the division between minority communities and law enforcement in the United States. Since Michael Brown was shot August 9th by officer Darren Wilson, disturbing images have streamed out of this small Missouri suburb.

However, far from just reporting the facts, the images – and the circumstances surrounding them –  are often pre-loaded with agendas. Under analysis, these agendas reveal that Ferguson is the site of a second, more insidious battle that being fought by out of town organizations and waged by proxy through the media. The goal? Control of the Ferguson narrative.

Narrative One: Michael Brown, Innocent Victim
Michael Brown was a good kid. A graduate of Normandy High School in St. Louis, he was in Ferguson visiting his grandmother before starting Vatterott College. He had no criminal record, and was walking home from the convenience store with his friend, Dorian Johnson, when he was stopped by officer Darren Wilson.

According to Johnson, the Wilson approached them and told them to “Get the F#CK on the sidewalk.” They told the officer that they were only a few moments from home, and would be out of the street shortly. Officer Wilson appeared to drive off, but then quickly stopped and reversed his vehicle, almost colliding with the two young men.

Officer Wilson then forcefully opened his door, hitting Michael Brown and causing the door to ricochet shut. A struggle ensued, and Wilson began to choke Brown while trying pull him inside his police vehicle. During the struggle, the officer drew his weapon and shot Brown, at which point Brown and Johnson tried to flee. But as they ran, the officer continued to fire.

Fearing for his life, Brown turned around and tried to surrender. He got down on the ground and put his hands up. But officer Wilson continued to approach and in cold blood executed Brown with several shots to the head and body.

Narrative Two: Michael Brown, Menace to Society
Michael Brown was a criminal and a thug. Around noon, on August 9th, 2014, he entered and robbed a convenience store, taking several boxes of cigars and physically threatening store personnel that tried to stop him.

After the robbery, Brown was walking down the middle of the street with his accomplice, Dorian Johnson, when a local police officer stopped the pair and asked them to get out of the road and walk on the sidewalk. The two indicated they would get out of the road, but as the police officer drove away, they ignored his request and continued down the middle of the street.

The officer then reversed his vehicle and began to approach Brown and Johnson for a second time. However, this time, as the officer tried to exit his vehicle, Brown attacked him and went for his gun. During the struggle, the gun went off, at which point Brown and Johnson began to flee. However, when the officer got out of the vehicle to pursue – as per police protocol – Brown began to taunt him.

 ‘Oh, what are you going to do about it? You’re not going to shoot me.’ And then he said all the sudden he just started to bum-rush him. He just started coming at him full speed. And so he just started shooting. And he just kept coming. So, he really thinks he was on something because he just kept coming.” – Newsmax

And, the officer was right. The toxicology report showed that Brown did have marijuana in his system. So, fearing for his life, the officer continued to fire at the rapidly advancing Brown until he was finally brought down. Was it a tragedy? Yes. But it was a preventable one, and one that could have been avoided had Brown simply not repeatedly broken the law.

The Correct Narrative
Of course, neither version is correct. In order to construct an accurate narrative, you would first need to have all of the facts. Then, you would need objective third parties to analyze and report them. In this case, many of the facts are not known, and some of them will never be known. But even worse, most of the parties involved, on both sides, are not able to be objective. They have already decided which version of the truth they believe, and future factual developments are unlikely to deter them.

 

10 Responses

  1. Markelo

    I stand between me and my fietsns/health. My negativity and ability to jus ice up on myself andante excuses my inability to see that I CAN do it . I needy learn I’m worth it . I can say the words, but I still don’t believe it.

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