The Ferguson Riots

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The death of Michael Brown, a young African-American, happened just over a year ago. The community of Ferguson, Missouri came together to peacefully protest in honor of Michael, and fulfill the Black Lives Matter movement; although once things began to escalate, the police presence became stronger. Police forces are often expressed as being separate from military or other organizations involved in the defense of the state against attackers. However, with the Ferguson protests and riots the police chose to use many tactics in order to diminish the protests and riots. After the African-American teen Trayvon Martin was shot and killed by a police officer, the hashtag and movement, #BlackLivesMatter, was created. “I [Alicia Garza] created #BlackLivesMatter…show more content…
“In the chaos, it was not immediately clear which agencies did what exactly …” (Levs, 2). This shows the lack of knowledge the authorities had about the situation, and how eager they were to put an end to the riots without thinking about the safety of the protesters. “Chief among them are making decisions like deploying heavily armed officers and using military equipment; which some experts say helped to make a bad decision worse” (Levs, 2). Having the Militarized units, as well as equipment, being brought in caused many people to voice their opinion on the choices being made by the authorities, and how they are affecting the community and the protesters. “Militarization of policing encourages officers to adopt a ‘warrior’ mentality and think of the people they are supposed to serve as enemies” (Levs, 3). The police, militarized units, and other authorities had the task to safely calm the violent protests, and to prevent the protesters from continuing to damage the city. The tactics that they used were not only unnecessary, but also extreme. Lt. Gen. Russel Honore said, “The tactics they are using, I don’t know where they learned them from, it appears they may be making them up on the way. But this is escalating the situation … What authorities should have done, is have ‘front line policemen’ to face protesters, not a SWAT team”

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