On Saturday, Nov. 29, some five days after a grand jury decided not to indict a Ferguson policeman for murder, a group of 100 people gathered to walk from Ferguson, Missouri to the state capital in Jefferson City to protest the grand jury decision. In the last week protests across the nation echoed the discontent seen in Ferguson. But as these protests now seem to be winding down, what did they accomplish?
Early in August when a white police officer shot an unarmed black teenager after the teen had committed a strong-arm robbery of a local convenience store, many activists thought they had the perfect cause for protest. But protests quickly devolved into riots and police responded with force giving protesters even more to gripe about.
Months later a grand jury meeting to decide if that police officer had acted in a criminal manner decided not to indict him sparking further riots and protests in Ferguson.
Ferguson wasn’t the only place that sponsored protests in support of Michael Brown, the teen shot in early August. Protests occurred all across the country from California, Indiana, and Texas, to Illinois, Boston, and New York.
A group of protesters even attacked a Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Seattle making little kids cry and ruining the family event.
As protests branched out across the nation, they also continued with a vengeance in the St. Louis area. In one case Ferguson protesters invaded a St. Louis area mall, shutting it down and disrupting Black Friday shoppers.
Property damage was extensive from the riots in Ferguson with dozens of businesses, most locally owned by minorities, were burned to the ground. Two protesters, members of the New Black Panther Party, were even arrested on gun and explosives charges and charged with attempting to murder Ferguson officials and bomb the famed Gateway Arch in St. Louis.
Now, on the weekend after the grand jury decision was released, a small group of people assembled in Ferguson to walk the 120 miles to Missouri’s state capital to continue shining a light on the shooting of the teenager.
But other than repeating “no justice, no peace” ad nauseam, what exactly did all this sturm und drang accomplish? One is hard pressed to find any.
Some on the left, though, feel that the protests have been a big, important movement. In fact, one columnist for Time magazine imagined that the Ferguson protests were somehow “just like” the Boston Tea Party which helped start the American Revolution that gave birth to our country.
This outlandish comparison fails close scrutiny.
The founding fathers spent years laying the ideological groundwork for the American Revolution. Before they even set their first moccasin-clad feet on the decks of ships belonging to the East India Trading Company in protest of the taxes imposed on them by Britain, they had created an entire thesis to justify their actions.
The colonists wrote pamphlets, books, newspaper articles, they held rallies, gathered supporters, and created an actual, meaningful organization throughout the colonies to raise support for their goals.
Then, when they finally did commit to acting directly on their principles with violence, the destruction of property was targeted, specific, and meaningful.
On the other hand, the Ferguson protests are solely driven by anger and are disjointed, disorganized, un-focused, and free of any real driving ideology. And the destruction of property has been wanton, opportunistic, and indiscriminate. In fact, the destruction was often aimed at their own neighborhood and their own people, not any “outside” force.
So, while it is easy to see that thousands of people across the nation seem to have an axe to grind, there are no real, sensible goals behind their acts of wanton destruction. Their protests are willy-nilly and pointless.
Just what do their slogans mean? What are their goals? Like the late, unlamented Occupy Wall Street “movement,” the Ferguson protests are mere turbulence all seemingly with no meaning.
We get it. You’re mad. But what do you really want?
If liberals and race pushers want Ferguson to mean something, maybe they should emulate the founding fathers and put some actual thought behind their actions so that whatever change they seek has a basis in logic?