The police are on the way.
There is something gone badly wrong in the way police are taught to look at civilians these days. This is the logic of an occupying power being employed on American citizens. Ever since 9/11, when we all began to be told that we were going to have to bend a little bit, and then a little bit more, to authority or else we'd all die, the police in this country have been militarized in their tactics and in their equipment, which is bad enough, but in their attitudes and their mentality, which is far, far worse.
Suspicion has bled into weaponized paranoia, especially in the case of black and brown people, especially in the case of young men who are black or brown, but this is not About Race because nothing ever is About Race. Even the potential of a threat requires a deadly response, Dick Cheney's one-percent idea brought to American cities and towns until Salt Lake City, of all places, winds up with cops who are deadlier on the streets than drug dealers.
This is how you wind up with Darren Wilson. This is how you wind up with Michael Brown, dead in the middle of the road. This is how Darren Wilson walks, tonight, for the killing of Michael Brown. This is how you end up with an American horror story.
Jesus Mary, this Bob McCulloch guy may be the single greasiest public servant I've ever encountered. I've never seen a DA who was so damned proud of himself for putting a grand jury on automatic pilot. (See, "Ham sandwich, indictment of.") And I've never seen such a perfect mixture of condescension and willful nonfeasance in my many years of watching how law enforcement in this country operates.
This, after all, is a guy who once personally wrangled a grand jury to discover the identity of a whistleblower. This is a guy who once lied through his teeth about another police shooting, this one involving a car that allegedly "charged" a couple of officers, much as Michael Brown allegedly "charged" Darren Wilson. The kindest evaluation of McCulloch's record is that he is a very active prosecutor with a very clear sense of what he can make a grand jury do, if he chooses to do so, which he did not in this case, for reasons that are far from unclear.
In the most high-profile case of his career, prosecutor Bob McCulloch insisted he was just a feather in the wind, just gathering evidence so the grand jury could make up its own mind, not directing it at all. And then, Monday night, he hummina-hummina'ed for seven full minutes before announcing the least shocking news of the day. Darren Wilson did not commit a crime by shooting Michael Brown dead in broad daylight in the middle of the street. But Bob McCulloch, public servant, knows what the real problem with this investigation was.
"The most significant challenge encountered in this investigation has been the 24-hour news cycle and its insatiable appetite for something, for anything to talk about, following closely behind with the non-stop rumors on social media."
Social media. He actually fking said that.
Nothing at all.
November 24, 2014