A law professor at Indiana University has said we should expect “the LA riots with Rodney King” if the grand jury declines to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson. Jeannine Bell told a St. Louis CBS affiliate that Michael Brown’s death hurt the community of Ferguson and that protestors had already declared their intentions should the decision go the expected way.
The riots in question occurred in 1992, following the acquittal of LAPD officers who had been caught on videotape administering a brutal beating to Rodney King. They were the worst riots in the U.S. since the civil rights movement of the 1960s, and more than 2,000 people were injured. 53 people were killed over a six-day period, during which police were forced to bring in the California National Guard, the 7th Infantry Division, and even the Marines to quell the violence.
Unfortunately, there may be no way to avoid such a result in Ferguson, where protestors have already demonstrated a willingness to riot and loot. Regardless of the evidence that shows Wilson was justified in the killing, many of the troublemakers on the streets of Ferguson will be ready to raise hell when the ruling comes down. School officials have already asked the prosecutor’s office to delay the announcement until children are safely home.
The evidence is still officially sealed from public view, but leaks have surfaced throwing doubt onto the mainstream Ferguson narrative. Blood found on Wilson’s gun and inside his car corroborates the officer’s story, which is that he was attacked by Brown. If that evidence is indicative of what the grand jury is hearing, an indictment would be unlikely. Brown’s supporters don’t seem to care, however. They’ve decided this is an example of racial injustice, and all the evidence in the world isn’t going to change their minds. It’s the Trayvon Martin case all over again.
Even before the grand jury evidence was leaked, it was clear that this wasn’t the murder that the mainstream media wanted us to believe it was. One look at the way Michael Brown strongarmed a convenience store clerk on video was enough to tell us that he wasn’t the sweet, Christian boy his friends claimed him to be. Again, like Trayvon, the media was complicit in creating a story where there was none. And again, like Trayvon, Brown was promoted as an innocent angel.
We’ll soon get the full truth of what happened on that fateful August day, but before then we’ll see what the citizens of Ferguson and St. Louis are made of. We’ll see whether they respect the judicial process or whether they will use it as an excuse for more violence. It’s your move, Ferguson protestors; the world is watching.