Race and Fairness in America

Troubling events and impact on students

Across America, college students (and others, of course) are raising questions about what happened in Ferguson, Mo. and New York City. In these communities, two black men, Michael Brown and Eric Garner, respectively, died at the hands of police. In both cases, grand juries chose not to bring charges against the individuals. The failure to indict police in both cases is at odds with what millions of people had seen on television. Students across the U.S. feel the pain of injustice – including here at UNC-Chapel Hill and at Harvard, where I have been at a meeting. When deans don’t speak up on these issues, our students don’t know where we stand. So, I am speaking up. In many other civilized countries, police do not carry weapons or use tactics that our police have been permitted to use. Yes, police officers sometimes feel besieged, and yes, the situations often are not simple, but the failure to bring charges in the cases of Brown and Garner seems unjust. One must ask whether the outcomes would have been the same had the young men been white. I don’t think so. Barbara

Tagged  ferguson, garner

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