Victor Davis Hanson offered a refreshingly candid appraisal today of the content of the character of Michael Brown, along with a concise summary of how Brown’s death was the direct result of his unlawful, and foolish, actions — a useful counterpoint to the mass-media coverage which has focused more on the color of his skin, and on his family’s loss.
In his speech at Michael Brown’s funeral today, the Rev. Al Sharpton spoke of the need for black American’s to “clean up our community.” It’s a pity that message was not delivered to, and accepted by, Michael Brown before the fateful events of August 9.
Here’s an excerpt from Hanson’s essay (bolding added)
Almost no one believes the myths concocted at the beginning of the Ferguson controversy. That is not to say that we know what happened, only that we most certainly know that what we were told did not happen.
Michael Brown, the “young boy” and “gentle giant” and shy college-bound student, tragically was not simply minding his own business on his way to granny’s as we were told. . . . Brown had just committed a strong-armed robbery and was lucky that he was not shot by an armed guard or clerk. He appears on the video as a brutal thug, who uses his size to intimidate and, in cowardly fashion, to bully a much smaller clerk. The world of Michael Brown in that store is the world of barbarism, where there is no law and the strong dictate without mercy to the weak as they see fit. . . .
Brown was walking down the middle of the street under the influence of marijuana and so he was lucky that he was not hit by a car. He struck an officer — no one denies that — which in itself is another felony. He was not shot in the back as the community insisted and still dreams.
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Americans who watch all this know enough to suspend judgment about guilt or innocence until all the facts have been gathered and adjudicated. But for the time being they have been told to believe, by both activists and media, something that in their own lives they know is quite impossible: namely, that entering a store while under the influence of marijuana,strong-arming the clerk, stealing merchandise, walking down the center of a street, and, when stopped, striking a police officer in the face all should not necessarily illicit a quite dangerous response from an officer.
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