Got back from a local Texas vigil for today's National Moment of Silence in honor of Michael Brown and other victims of police abuse. After days of violence and terror in Ferguson, Mo., we joined with others around the country calling for peace and much-needed reform.
A little under a hundred people, along with the local CBS news, held vigil in memory of those who have died, those who are hurting, and in a hope for less of these tragedies in the future. We discussed the challenges of unequal treatment and militarization amongst the police and ended by releasing balloons representing the many victims of police brutality mourned across the country today.
We also signed letters to our local political leaders encouraging more protective measures, such as cheap front-facing cameras on officers and greater penalties for police abuse.
@wrighteous86: The problem is that witnesses have not come forward to give statements to the police.
Had you seen your friend violently gunned down, how encouraged would you be to enter the headquarters of the organization that was defending the individual who shot him? Now what if you'd grown up knowing that organization was statistically biased against you? Now what if that organization was actively censoring every form of media that could potentially put eyes on your personal safety?
It's worth noting that his friend that was part of the incident actually did give his statement to the FBI and St. Louis county prosecutor yesterday, and two other witnesses at the scene are set to give similar interviews.
Of note in their current statements is that all three witnesses suggest that Brown was never inside the police vehicle as the police department says, and one woman described their confrontation as "like an arm wrestling match" with only the window down. One shot was fired while the officer was in the car, and then the officer exited the vehicle and shot at Brown as he and Johnson ran away.
Oddly enough, as people have mentioned a few times, both the police and witness accounts don't dispute that Brown and Johnson were fleeing when Brown was shot away from the vehicle, and there's no explanation of why the police believe that was justified.
Reading through Kotaku's article, it kind of looks like their usual click-bait nonsense that they try to pull. I'm already talking with people on the project for the website that I write for to gather information, and the rights to manufacture discs for PS3 and 360 systems is already in the cards, and as usual, the writer doesn't know anything about tech or game development to know what it takes to get games like this working at all. Instead they base it off of no-name developers with no insight on the project whatsoever.
Bravo Kotaku, keep talking nonsense.
Physical disc stuff aside, you've gotta admit that Kickstarter page is really questionable. This pitch feels half-baked. And their answers to questions about the project haven't been particularly great either.
Maybe the new information you're getting will inspire a lot of confidence, but I would generally show great hesitance in putting any money behind their current pitch.
I've been following this for a while now, it's absolutely insane. Hearing about this stuff going on in other parts of the world doesn't quite hit you, but when it actually happens in the US it's pretty unsettling.
I do think the police are out of line with firing tear gas and rubber bullets into a crowd of peaceful protesters though. Why in the world are they armed so heavily? Why are the police behaving like they're trying to stop an uprising or something? It's absolutely fucking ridiculous.
Conversely, the looters and people destroying public property and businesses can go to hell. Way to undermine the protesters efforts by destroying your own community. Seriously, once this is all over and done with, they'll just stand there and realize that they fucked themselves worse than the police did.
Just a shitty situation all around.
On Wednesday, a lot of the protestors were better organized, and a few reporters among the protesters said they seemed to be kicking out "instigators" that had a history of leaning toward violence or looting. So, while things continue to get more heated, the actual protests appear to be taking on a purer stance with less looting and more symbolic civil disobedience. (like crowds of people with their arms up, chanting, "Hands up, don't shoot!")
I wonder how many of these cops are going to lose their jobs and end up in jail after this. I would hope that the answer is " a lot!" but I'm not gonna hold my breath. I don't have much faith in the FBI either, but getting them involved with this is probably the best thing that could have happened, given the circumstances. If anyone can bring the hammer down on those bad cops and make things right, it's the Justice Department.
At best, I would anticipate a few specific cops caught on especially egregious videos and perhaps some higher ups. If the local police chief remains in, I'll be very surprised. Most-likely, though, the majority of officers involved will still be there after this.
Not to mention, the police have been very tight-lipped on any specific officer names. After a reporter from the Washington Post was detained in a McDonalds, he asked for the name of the officers and just received a stone wall. Sadly, many of these officers, unless caught on video, will not be held accountable for what is going on, and the worst things are probably more based on flawed policies and orders across the whole department. These are systemic issues affecting far beyond just the area around St. Louis.