There’s one thing we know about what happened in Ferguson, Missouri.
We don’t know what happened in Ferguson, Missouri.
Just under 100 percent of the population has no clue in regards to the events that day when Darren Wilson shot Michael Brown. Almost that many people want justice to be served. Well, at least that’s what we say. But a lot of times, we’d rather justice be our errand boy than our standard. We want justice to work for us. For our circle. For our movement. We’re not so concerned with her working for those who happen to be outside of our circle or our movement. Especially when it turns out that our circle or movement is in the wrong.
Here are a few questions for you to consider that should help you to see if it’s justice that you want or just blood.
What if it turns out that Darren Wilson was defending himself? What if Michael Brown really was coming at him with intent to kill after having already beaten him? And what if there was undeniable evidence to support this? Would you want justice or blood?
What if Darren Wilson yelled a racial slur at Michael Brown upon meeting him in the middle of the road? What if Darren Wilson really was out to get a black guy that day and planned on hiding behind his badge during the fallout. And what if there was undeniable evidence to support this? Would you want justice or blood?
What about the store owner who was allegedly bullied and robbed by Michael Brown? Do you care about him getting justice or is it okay for him to be forgotten about in all of this?
These are all what ifs. And like I said, none of us has the answers to what really happened that day. Eventually, we’ll have more. But it takes time.
In the meantime, it’s good to take your questions, concerns and even frustrations before the media. It’s fine to have peaceful protests in the street. But there’s one thing that can’t happen right now through the media and in the streets.
If it’s justice that we really want, we’ll resist the urge to find her by listening to media outlets that are, at best, speculative. If it’s justice that we want, we won’t go looking for her to make an appearance right this second in the streets.
No, that doesn’t mean that you are to sit back and do nothing while you watch things get bogged down in the court system. You should hold officials accountable. You should question the narrative that is being fed to you from both sides. And you should prepare yourself for the possibility that the guy you’ve supported through all of this is in the wrong.
Lady justice is slow. That’s frustrating but it’s also how she does some of her best work. She rarely serves us well when she is forced to make her decision right this second nor does she do us any favors by getting tangled up in red tape and corruption. So, by all means, question those who claim to work on her behalf. Hold them accountable so that they will do their job with integrity. Carry signs and march around their buildings. Just remember to be patient.
Since the 15th century, Lady Justice has been depicted in statues and paintings wearing a blindfold. This small symbol reminds us that when she is working correctly, Lady Justice makes no decision based on color, income or social standing. Truth, not public opinion or even sympathy, is her guide.
Lady Justice is blindfolded.
But she’s not wearing earplugs.
If an accurate depiction of Lady Justice were done today, the blindfolded lady would have Fox News, MSNBC, angry mobs and those with long held prejudices whispering in her ear.
But in the end, Lady Justice won’t listen to those voices. It’s only the truth that she cares about.
And if it’s truth and not blood that we’re after, we’ll respond to those voices just like that old, blind and slow lady.