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I'm not posing any deep questions. But I asked myself what I'd like to see if this was going on in my community.

I went looking to find out where the hell the mayor is in all this. The mayor's name is Knowles.

He is, after all, the Big Boss. He could order the local police to go home. He could tell the county cops to go away. He could be in the streets talking to people.

He could be dressing down the officers who arrested the Huffpo and WaPo reporters -- in public. Along with the police chief, who clearly hasn't explained to everyone concerned -- his employees and the "guest" employees from regional law enforcement -- that they are not to mess with reporters.

He could order the police chief to put the clown(s) who pulled a city alderman out of his car to be put on leave -- or to ID them if they're not local and have them reassigned immediately by their superiors.

In short, he could be a leader and lead his town. But it appears he's MIA, and eleventy layers of "law enforcement" are involved, and they all think they are in charge.

I'll drop in two excerpts from the most informative item I could Google.

Check out this quote, which really appears to show how far out of touch he is. Parse it. Is it really a question of "they" "not liking" police?

“The African-American community — youth in the African-American community in particular — has something against law enforcement in many ways,” Knowles said. “They don’t like law enforcement, and they don’t think law enforcement likes them.”
Maybe this guy isn't smart enough to be a real leader.

As far as a regional tribal cop culture, check out the police chief's CV:

Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson said 50 of the city’s 53 police officers are white. He said he made recruiting and promoting black officers a priority when he took over four years ago after a three-decade police career in St. Louis and St. Louis County.
Police department essentially all-white where the community is 70 percent minority -- as many have already pointed out.

And 30 years in the metropolitan police forces. We know where his loyalty lies. It's inevitable.

On the plus side, he surely knows all of the higher-ups in the region, and he should be working with the mayor to get them out of the way and out of the town. There's an astonishing lack of common sense here. It's a given that massed cops who have not been given strict directions are going to start messing with reporters and with local elected officials.


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Comment Preferences

  •  Sigh. (14+ / 0-)

    I'd sure like to cover their next city council meeting.

    Thump! Bang. Whack-boing. It's dub!

    by dadadata on Thu Aug 14, 2014 at 05:29:13 AM PDT

  •  Excellent question. (5+ / 0-)

    Excellent question.

  •  Sounds like Boss Hogg (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mint julep, dadadata

    I voted Tuesday, May 6, 2014 because it is my right, my responsibility and because my parents moved from Alabama to Ohio to vote. Unfortunately, the republicons want to turn Ohio into Alabama.

    by a2nite on Thu Aug 14, 2014 at 05:44:20 AM PDT

  •  The mayor seems like a light weight that lets (3+ / 0-)

    others do the heavy lifting.  This can cause a rigidity that leads to an armed campt mentality in time of crisis like this. The lack of Black people in the police and their leadership is another problem.  Also, the political leadership is mostly all White, too.   The place is set up for a terrible problem between the people and the civil authorities.  Is no one able to help them in MO?

    •  No one will help (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      because St Louis County, and towns like Creve Couer, are the "white flight" suburbs that show, by their votes, actions, and comments on the net and on the St Louis Post Dispatch site, a profound hatred of blacks.
      The county sees itself as a fortress besieged by blacks who must be contained in the city and the old inner rig towns like Ferguson.

      I buy and sell well trained riding mules and American Mammoth Jack Stock.

      by old mule on Thu Aug 14, 2014 at 10:01:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Elected officials have a responsibility to their (3+ / 0-)

    constituents. Who and where are the people that voted for them?
    There is something very wrong if the Mayor and elected city officials, with 70% of the population being people of color, are not predominately and proportionally reflective of the population.
    Can someone tell me if the Mayor is even present?
    Furthermore, how could a police force with minorities under represented receive federal funds for all this equipment.
    Is it a coincidence all these racially charged arrests and shootings are taking the focus off the 1% and income disparity?
    Check out Ferguson, it's the perfect place to shoot a minority, with the police force being overwhelmingly white. I don't care what is said, given the makeup of veterans seeking positions on police forces, the city had to work very hard to maintain a 95% white police force.

    "If you tell the truth, you won't have to remember anything", Mark Twain

    by Cruzankenny on Thu Aug 14, 2014 at 06:37:03 AM PDT

  •  Wow, what commitment (4+ / 0-)
    Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson said 50 of the city’s 53 police officers are white. He said he made recruiting and promoting black officers a priority when he took over four years ago after a three-decade police career in St. Louis and St. Louis County.
    4 years on the job, minority hiring was a "priority", and he found all of 3 black guys to hire. That's almost one a year. How is it that the community doubts this guy with his laser-like focus on hiring minorities?
  •  The police is out of touch (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    and out of control in that small town. It must be unsettling to find themselves in the international spotlight. All these years there was peace and order in their little world, everyone knew their place and all of a sudden all hell breaks lose because on one 'little incident'.
    They're trying to do their best to deescalate the situation by asking the people to do their protesting during daylight hours and not block traffic. Not too much to ask, is it? And what do these people do? they don't comply! They stay out after dark and get even more angry when the cops show up in riot gear and teargas them. What is wrong with them?/

    I'm trying really hard to wrap my head around that kind of a mind set. Showing in up in combat ready riot gear like it's enemy territory and expecting people to calm down and feel safe. Unbelievable!
    That whole police force needs to be replaced!

    Did it really take one young man's death to finally start the change that's been needed?

    El pueblo unido jamás será vencido. The people united will never be defeated

    by mint julep on Thu Aug 14, 2014 at 06:48:17 AM PDT

  •  perhaps after the next election we will see this (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    We are all pupils in the eyes of God.

    by nuclear winter solstice on Thu Aug 14, 2014 at 06:49:19 AM PDT

  •  When social problems are allowed (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    to fester for decades, when young people have no opportunity to secure their future, when education is devalued and defunded, when racial issues are ignored, and when law enforcement is allowed to armor-up to the extent that they act and look like an army bracing for barbarians slamming at the gate, the end product is the situation in Ferguson. It is where civil rights are not important, where no one in political power has an interest in the sorrow and anger of a community in mourning, and where First Amendment rights are viewed as criminal and threatening.

    Welcome to the emerging police state, where social discord is equated with anarchy, where the right to peacefully assemble is felonious, and where the citizenry has the privilege of being targeted with automatic weapons when sitting down in the street.

    Somewhere in all-while America, whispers are building into a clarion call for a race war. They're all watching the white police-army pitted against the weaponless black community. They're hoping for a black retaliation that will quickly descend into bloodshed. My guess is that a good number of  all-white Americans, laying in wait for a violent societal clash, are engineering the events in Ferguson.

    And absolutely NO ONE in the Republican Party is denouncing the police force overkill. Republicans, if you remain silent, you acquiesce to the elements within your political party who want rivers of blood flowing in the streets. And you remain silent so you'll secure the white racist vote.

    It's not a mystery. It's all in plain sight.

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