August 17, 2014
Jesse Williams’ very eloquent thoughts on Mike Brown’s depiction in cable news shows:
I was irritated and distracted as I watched a panel discussion on CNN yesterday. What was the source of my irritation?
The constant looping of the then newly-released footage by the Ferguson PD chief of the alleged Tiparillo robbery at the liquor store in Ferguson.
The discussion was about Mike Brown and the circumstances under which he died. Whether or not it was brown we saw in the video, and even whether or not he stole anything, was immaterial to the discussion at hand. Past the first loop, the purpose of showing this video went from appropriately imparting information to taking active part in the character assassination of Mike Brown by looping it all throughout the show.
This type of tone-deaf behavior is despicable and offensive. It’s even more despicable when the producers do this while their panel is discussing how inappropriate it was of the chief of police to have released the video.
Mike Brown was murdered in cold blood by a Ferguson police officer who had no reason or right to kill him. Whatever Mike Brown might have been accused of doing, had he lived, would never have warranted the death penalty that was meted out to him.
The discussion needs to be refocused on the crime and not the victim’s character. The discussion needs to be focused on the behavior of the Ferguson police department’s leadership and its policies. An investigation of the policeman needs to be completed. The department itself seems to be the source of a lot of racially-motivated harassment of the population. That needs to be investigated as well. The behavior of the chief of police in this is highly questionable – to the point where one wonders what organizations he might be affiliated with outside of the police department.