Insight From Twitter: People Give Thoughts on Ferguson, Police, And Bringing Change

Police in Ferguson, MO


So many people, even with good intentions, have continuously tried to speak for others. I have done this too. We try to be as noble as possible but when events as major as the killing of Michael Brown occur, sometimes it is best to just go right to the people.

The execution of this unarmed teen has caused a scene that ?I have never seen in my lifetime and many have not seen since the 1960’s. The excessive force that the officer used in the killing of Mike Brown and the excessive force they have shown in the days since, are beyond describable at this point Which is why I have turned to Twitter.

Twitter has become the number one source for news, updates, and reaction to this incident. With tyrannical control of the media in Ferguson, Tweeters have been the best kind of journalists. I wanted to go to the people and ask them, “How can we change this? How can we bring about change when it comes to the police force and violence in general? And racial relations?” I received amazingly eloquent and heartbreaking responses. Below are a few.

This is something I have been wondering for years. Why does it seem that so many officers shoot to kill and that’s it? All of these wounds to the face or chest or other areas that increase a person’s chance of death seem like they should be an absolute last resort. Also, there are other tactics that can be used to subdue actually dangerous persons. Of course, many of these victims do not seem to be dangerous at all. Another,

All of these points are very valid. The part about how to prove that we are worthy of living is truly heartbreaking. Yes, Michael Brown was going to start college, yet he was still gunned down in broad daylight. What about a teen who maybe isn’t going to college? Someone who isn’t the greatest person alive? After all, we all are flawed. Do they deserve to die? Absolutely not. Police forces as a whole need to have tremendous amounts of training on how they DO possess implicit bias, as most of us do, and how they can combat that effectively. Also, better training and less armed forces will help us to never see what is happening in Ferguson again.

This user points out another GREAT message:

I do not particularly care if you think the Trayvon Martin, or Jordan Davis, or Michael Brown killings were racial-based or not. Most of us people of color know that they probably were. The dehumanizing of black bodies along with inherent perceptions of them as dangerous, is not new. Literature, studies, etc have been written and conducted for years showing how this is true. From slavery, to lynching and Jim Crow, Rodney King, and more, institutional and structural racism have found ways to degrade black and brown people and this is just another tactic sadly employed.

Here is a great idea on police accountability:

Isaac Goodwater is a 25 year old male from New London, CT. His words are good to process too. The lack of transparency we have seen in Ferguson is utterly pathetic. Police officers should be held to extremely high standards. Their every move can and should be up for scrutiny. When you have a killing, especially one that apparently seems as senseless as this, we yearn for a video; something that can prove the barbaric?behavior of this cop. Body cams and dash cams should be way more readily available in every force. Many have asked why they need militarized vehicles and loads of tear gas canisters, but can’t seem to have cameras on their cars or their person?

Pharaoh R. El-Aton is a 56 year old man from Chicago. He ?felt so strongly, he sent me a personal email so that I could share his thoughts. I will some it up.

He says that we should hire psychologists and psychiatrists to evaluate people who are trying to become police officers. He believes that we need people who’s personalities will match up well with the job. He also suggests staying away from people who come off as hot headed or recent military personnel who have come back from wars. The feeling of occupation also is of concern. Too many whites patrol mostly black and Hispanic communities and it feels as if they are occupying them instead of genuinely trying to protect and serve.

Everyone realizes that most cops aren’t bad. And not every white cop is a bigot and racist. However, these underlying issues are definitely real. What do you think of some of the things said above?

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I was born on January 13, 1990. I was born and raised in Charlotte, NC. I moved up north and attended the University of CT from 2008 to 2012. I currently also work at a law firm in Uptown Charlotte and have been helping with this organization entitled the National Independent Voter Coalition. My interests include: Politics (obviously), Basketball (playing and watching) and watching almost any sport, movies, reading, the law, human rights, entertainment, mostly Angelina Jolie and Beyonce. I am fun, caring, passionate, intelligent, and unique!