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Monday, August 11, 2014

The Media Conveniently Focuses on Ferguson Looting Instead of Rampant Police State

And unfortunately a lot of people are falling right into this trap.

Nick Bernabe | The Anti-Media

Following what may be the greatest few weeks in decades of exposure to police brutality, police in Ferguson, Missouri, have now shot and killed an 18 year old unarmed teen who, according to witnesses, was holding his hands in the air when he was shot. Peaceful protests that began shortly after the shooting yesterday were met with full on military style anti-riot police.

What started as a peaceful protest soon turned into a small riot which resulted in some stores being looted and shots being fired at police.

While the riots will not help the cause, they are also not surprising considering the sharp uptick in anti-police sentiment stemming from the massive amount of police violence against the working poor and minorities in America. Police violence which is increasingly being captured on cell phone cameras and posted online daily. We have a whole section on the Police State on our website which can be viewed here.

Frustration is now boiling over after decades of discriminatory policing, near-zero accountability, and lack of will from lawmakers to reel in the spiraling police state. In fact, as we have documented in depth, the militarization of the police is only rising despite the increased outcry from concerned citizens against it. The overbearing presence of riot police in Ferguson deployed to contain peaceful protesters may have been the very spark which ignited the rioting in the first place.

In the predictable manner in which the corporate media operates, the news cycle has been shifted away from the tragedy of the killing of 18 year old Michael Brown, and switched to the few who lost their cool and began looting and rioting. While the riots are newsworthy, the main focus of the news coverage should be on the death of this unarmed young man, and the overall rise of documented police brutality that is permeating in all corners of America. More Americans have been killed in the last decade by the police than the total number of US soldiers killed in the entire Iraq war, but they won’t talk about that on TV.

This screen shot from Fox News’ latest story on the incident perfectly exemplifies my point:


But, as the corporate media so often does, news stories are attempting to turn this horrible tragedy into a polarizing wedge issue rather than a unification against police brutality; and the media’s spin is working. People on our Facebook page can been seen commenting with emotionally filled knee-jerk reactions to the rioting, as if insured property damage is more important than the loss of innocent life. The argument is being shifted to whether or not looting was called for, rather than unifying like a laser on the misuse of police powers, where the argument should be.

The simple fact of the matter is that police accountability has moved to the forefront of the American psyche. The damage done to a few businesses can and will be repaired and their insurance will likely cover losses due to the looting. However, Michael Brown’s family will never get their son back no matter what happens on the streets. The agenda coming from the media should be about preventing these types of catastrophes from happening through increased pressure on police and promoting innovative measures to improve accountability; the rioting should be an afterthought.
If you are more concerned about a few material goods being looted and/or destroyed than you are about the loss of innocent life at the hands of an out of control police apparatus, then your priorities are in the wrong place. Don’t let the corporate media and their government handlers who all too often provide cover for police misconduct divide us. We’re too close now to let these divide and conquer games derail our momentum that is rising against police misconduct.
You can see the cozy relationship between the Salinas police department and local corporate media outlets in this article we posted about recent killings by Salinas police:
This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to the author and
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Related Article:  What Causes Riots?

You can visit our Police Brutality article archive here.

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