Moments like this, moments when the collective America stand up and say how they feel are exactly what makes social media powerful. I know it's tempting to turn it off. I know it's tempting to look away. But through social media individual voices are heard instead of the voices on our news or from our government, and that is powerful. It allows everyone to see we are not alone in our thoughts, we are not alone in our heartbreak or our celebrations. It allows us to come together for change.
I spent a lot of time reading twitter last night. I was afraid to see the rioting and also afraid of the media's focus on that rioting as a way to avoid the actual issue. This is not about riots. This is about justice and equality.
I want our police protected. My aunt is a police officer and I want her allowed to defend herself as she defends our city. No question.
But I also know that just because you wear a uniform you should not be given a free pass that places you above the law. And when there are hours and hours of testimony and accounts, conflicting evidence and lots and lots of grey area, that should result in a trial in order to get to the bottom of what really happened.
Not to say this officer is guilty of murder or manslaughter. I do not know that. He very well may have been acting in self defense, which is a completely acceptable defense in a trial, and what I am sure he would have said had this gone in front of a judge and jury. But the thing is, a grand jury is not a trail. A grand jury decides if something is so acceptable that it is above review from the courts, and I cannot wrap my head around how this was viewed as beyond review.
Last night it was said the grand jury gave their lives to this process over the months they took deciding if it should go to trial. I, along with everyone else on the internet, want to point out that they gave their time, not their lives. Michael Brown gave his life.
I feel like there is a lot to say, but I also feel like many others have said it better. So here are some of the tweets I read last night that I feel are worth sharing.
Reminder: this was not a trial. It was a denial of trial. If there were conflicting witness accounts a trial would flesh that out. #ferguson
— Kristen Howerton (@kristenhowerton) November 25, 2014
A kid is dead. A significant portion of America thinks the system is rigged against them. Everyone should work to change that fact.
— Reid Wilson (@PostReid) November 25, 2014
Our police ought to be respected and supported, but an unarmed dead body in the street is probable cause for arrest for, you know, anybody.
— Christian Mitchell (@cljmitchell) November 25, 2014
My white privilege: thinking this time would be different.
— Meg Hourihan (@megnut) November 25, 2014
"What age is a black boy when he learns he's scary?" There are so many black parents who have to break this to their sons tonight.
— Jazmine Hughes (@jazzedloon) November 25, 2014
Brown Family statement "Let's not just make noise, let's make a difference." #Ferguson
— Ayman Mohyeldin (@AymanM) November 25, 2014
Injustice did not begin in August and fight for justice does not end now. #Ferguson
— Sarah Kendzior (@sarahkendzior) November 25, 2014