When the Trayvon Martin shooting story first broke in 2012, my first reaction was the result of exactly what I'd, trustingly, been fed by MSNBC and CNN, complete with photos of what looked like a 12-year-old child (Martin from years earlier): "Oh my god! That poor little kid! And he was just carrying Skittles and a tea!"
Well, as it turned out, that "child" was 17, over 6 feet tall, and he'd bloodied the nose and back of the head of his neighborhood-watch pursuer before Zimmerman finally shot him once in self defense, to get Martin off of him. (Hospital records documented Zimmerman's bloody nose and the injuries on the back of his head.)
In other words, what I'd first been told by a couple of media outlets -- that a "vigilante" had randomly shot an innocent junior-high-age kid carrying a bag of candy -- was completely false.
A couple of days ago, when the Michael Brown shooting story first broke, I was immediately more wary.
According to the first thing I saw on CNN, an interview with Brown's friend who had been walking with him when the police pulled up: "We were just walking along. Big Mike was a gentle giant! He had his hands up! The man just shot him when he was running away!"
That indeed sounds terrible! What kind of monster shoots a Gentle Giant while he's running away?!
From the friend's tale, the two young men were simply "strolling" in the middle of the street when a cop car pulled up and told them to get out of the street. Big Mike didn't like that and started arguing. The Wicked Cop then tried to pull him into the squad car. Big Mike started running. And so the Wicked Cop shot him multiple times.
Just from that alone: When a cop tells you to get out of the middle of the street, then get out of the middle of the street. Cops are annoying assholes sometimes. I can think of 3 occasions in my 49 years when I personally thought I was stopped unfairly:
One: Middle of the day, I was frequently switching lanes (with blinker) while driving my Ford Pinto down Guadalupe in Austin. Cop car thought I was switching lanes too much and pulled me over. I guess my Ford Pinto with multiple bumperstickers looked poor and weird. The cop came to my window, asked me what my hurry was. When I explained, "No hurry, just trying to pass slow people; I thought I was using my blinker. Was I speeding?" he let me off with not even a warning.
Two: 4am at an Austin lake after being out clubbing all night, after doing mushrooms for the first time. Me, a fellow white-girl co-ed, and two older Middle Eastern grad students. I was wading knee-deep in the lake, "feeling the one-ness of the universe" after the mushrooms, when the cop car pulled up and shined his brights on us. One officer got out and came over to me, still in the water, and asked what we were all doing... I told him something about how pretty the lake was. He and his partner conferred and then drove off.
Three: Coming home circa 4am from a friend's house party in the west hills of Austin, I was lost. At some point on some road, some asshole in a sports car pulled up at the light next to me. After which we proceeded to RACE! He beat me, but I was overjoyed to see him get pulled over by the police a mile or so later. Only problem for me was: According to the police, while they had him stopped, they had apparently also "signaled" to me to pull over. I didn't see any such signals, so I drove on, laughing at the poor sucker who got pulled over. Well, a couple of minutes later, there were police on MY tail as I was trying to find my way back to town. When I pulled over, 4 or 5 cop cars soon joined us. 4 in the morning, 10 cops all standing around getting off on watching my sobriety tests... I passed all the tests, but got a ticket for speeding.
OK... see the difference there in the very RUDIMENTARY behavior when stopped by the police? I may have thought the cops were acting like assholes, but did I act like an asshole and attack them either verbally or physically? No, I did not. Lesson to those in the "Black Community" who are obviously teaching their kids that the police are "to be confronted": You've been teaching your kids wrong. When you teach your kids to ATTACK the police over minor slights, then -- surprise! -- the police might just attack in response.
All of the above thoughts were PRIOR to my learning via a televised video that the "Gentle Giant, Big Mike" had, minutes before being stopped by the officer, stolen some cigarillos from a local convenience store, shoving the owner when he tried to stop him from walking out.
When the officer stopped the walking pair re their jaywalking, is it inconceivable that "Big Mike" was feeling guilty about what he had just stolen and was afraid of getting busted for that? Is it inconceivable that he behaved aggressively in an attempt to avoid arrest?
Initial autopsy reports show that Mike Brown was shot 6 times IN THE FRONT. His friend lied when he said that Brown was shot in the back. And his friend lied when he said that he and Brown had simply been walking along innocently (failing to mention that Brown had just stolen something).
MSNBC and CNN have pondered tonight: "Why aren't people believing the witnesses?" Well, because the witnesses have clearly LIED. Brown wasn't simply "an 18-year-old BOY" just moseying-on-down-the-street but rather, a 6'4" thug who'd just robbed a store and was extremely anxious to get away from a cop who had just caught him.
A side-note: How many young black men were just shot in Chicago alone last week by other young black men? 90% of black homicides in this country last year were committed by black males. This dwarfs anything, ANYTHING, that ANY police officer might have done to the "Black Community." Most sane people are completely aware of these statistics. Why aren't black people out on the streets of Chicago protesting? Clean up your own backyard, folks.