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Woke up to the news that the Baltimore Protests took a bad turn yesterday and that there was looting and violence and several people were arrested. The death of Freddie Gray in police custody has understandably invoked very heated responses and outrage but letting it get out of control does nothing to speed along the investigation, does nothing to speed up the process of obtaining indictments or getting to the exact details of what happened to him while in police custody.

DISTURBING THE PEACE

 

So much for peaceful protesting…

Posted by Bmore Around Town on Saturday, April 25, 2015

Ok this after days of peaceful protests and before the man is put in the ground. The family of course has called for calm – even though they are not personally responsible for those who wish to go out and engage in destructive behavior.  Most people no, Most human beings are at this point upset at the spate of interactions between law enforcement and African Americans that have been more often than not lately resulting in the death of the individual. In case you have been out of the country for the last few weeks, Walter Scott, Eric Harris, Natasha McKenna and let’s not omit the dismissing of charges in the Rekia Boyd Case either. All upsetting, all as of this moment unresolved. Frustration at a system that seems to be more broken than not abounds and you would be hard pressed to find anyone familiar with any of these cases who is not A. upset, B. demanding answers, C. afraid of interactions with law enforcement at this point.

 

ROWDY PROTESTS ARE NOT JUSTIFIED NOT EVEN IN BALTIMORE

All that being said, neither the level of anger and frustration nor the heinousness of the crime allow for individuals to go out into neighborhoods and engage in destructive behavior that threatens the lives and or livelihoods of the residents and any visitors to those neighborhoods. There is no pass given for people who are upset to go and destroy. That is not how things work and its not supposed to. Why should people’s safety be jeopardized by potential violent mobs of angry people? Which protests would be the ones where the police department admitted fault and sent off  their officers to go to jail?

Can anyone tell me which protest was it that caused new laws to be put on the books directly related to police protocols in handling suspects in custody? Did I miss the protest that caused a grand jury to be convened that brought charges against an officer accused of police brutality? Didn’t think so.

These neighborhoods where these protests are focusing are places where people live and go to work daily.  While there may be one or two members of law enforcement that might live in those neighborhoods,  most of the residents and visitors  have had nothing at all to do with the reasons for the protests in the first place. When they can’t get to work and possibly lose their jobs because the streets are tied up with protesters how is that helping?

There is no entitlement to destroy because one feels disenfranchised. The death of someone in the community while in custody of law enforcement SHOULD be investigated, and if charges are warranted – filed and a trial held to determine guilt. That is the system of government in this country. This is how incidents of criminal behavior are adjudicated in this country. Not evne saying that the system is perfect BUT THERE IS A SYSTEM.

LEARN TO WORK THE SYSTEM AND MAKE IT WORK FOR YOU

 

Many seem to be oblivious to the fact that there is a process to change and enact laws that has less to do with protesting and more to do with VOTING for the people who HIRE the police and who make the laws that the police have to go by. Casting a vote in a presidential election because you voting for a brother does NOTHING for your community per say as the president is the president of the entire country not YOUR neighborhood or YOUR ethnic group. Saying voting does not matter is exactly why billions of dollars are being spent to make sure entire ethnic groups are unable to cast votes cause it doesn’t really matter.

Meanwhile neighborhoods are damaged, businesses are placed in jeopardy and people unfairly caught in the middle that are just trying to live their lives have to wonder what’s to become of their neighborhood.

Someone with at least a modicum of common sense needs to talk PUBLICLY about conflict resolution, and about legislative process which no is not going to happen over night but can happen if the members of the communities in question are ENGAGED IN THAT PROCESS.   NO there is no easy solution – there usually isn’t one and there shouldn’t be because knee-jerk responses to societal issues never yield effective solutions. The destruction of a neighborhood or shutting it down – will do absolutely what to expedite the case of Freddy Gray – nothing. It shouldn’t be that angry mobs should dictate policy or mete out justice not in Baltimore-not anywhere. Mob rule leads to Anarchy and those calling for an end to the current system would do well to remember and perhaps reacquaint themselves with the word.

You Only Live Once….literally…