Monday, August 18, 2014

chief struggley's occupation army is a patronage make-work project for what would otherwise be unemployed l00z3rs...,

buzzfeed | Over at the Prime Time Beauty & Barber Shop, a social hub in the black part of town, folks see it differently. “They treat us like criminals,” said barber Branden Turner, who’s worked at the shop for a few years. They described officers routinely waiting for customers to leave so they could give them traffic tickets, search for drugs, or ask them for identification so they could run a background check.

“Everyone knows the statistics,” said Turner, referring to the now well-known figures showing a disproportionate amount of traffic stops and arrests for blacks. “Ask anybody from the city,” he said, meaning St. Louis. “Don’t nobody come in from the city because they know this is one of the most racist places there is.”

In this city of about 21,000 people, the national spotlight has forced residents to grapple with dueling narratives of their relationship to each other and to their government. It’s a tale of two cities that happen to exist in one town: Ferguson. More largely, it’s a tale of two Americas, black and white, that seem to exist in totally different realities and have sharply divergent views on race.

Many black locals welcome the unflattering attention, hoping it might lead to change in a city where whites are only 29% of the population but five of the six city council members, six of the seven school board members, and — as repeated ad nauseam this week — 50 of the 53 police officers.
“We’re tired of being bullied,” said Jayson Ross, a 25-year-old native who has been a regular presence at the nightly protests.

Those demonstrations weren’t just a reaction to the killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson. They were also a fiery response to years of grievances that were routinely ignored by most of Ferguson’s white residents and by its predominantly white government. It’s the same pent-up fury that sparked protests in small towns made infamous by previous race-related controversies that went national: Sanford, Fla.; Jena, La.; and Jasper, Texas, notable among them.

Regardless of the geographic region, the community response follows a predictable script: White residents almost always find themselves surprised by the simmering discontent of their black neighbors. And why wouldn’t they be? They usually live in a different part of town, no longer segregated by law but by history, custom, and sometimes policy. What’s more, the police and other arms of government treat them with respect. Many white residents don’t think there’s much racial discontent because they just don’t see it.


Dale Asberry said...

Actually, no. It plays on magical thinking. The idea that no matter how bad something is, those humans will always find a way, even up to the last second. It takes no account of incompetence or malice.

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