Is race a factor in Ferguson? Not according to Twitter! (video)


August is called the silly season for a reason.  It is the time when most politicians leave for extended vacations and journalists are left with little else to report than how easily chocolate melts in the sunshine or how burnt toast looks vaguely like Jesus.

This dearth of news must have been worrying for the likes of tax dodging F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone who was no doubt expecting a serious roasting in the media for persuading the German court to allow him to avoid up to 6 years in jail by paying a fine – a story that merited more than the 3 minutes it received on the BBC news bulletins on the day.  Another person who would have been concerned was Theresa May whose abject failure to appoint a new chair to lead the Child Sexual Abuse Inquiry after almost 6 weeks is a disgrace which so far remains largely unreported or commented upon by the British mainstream media.

Lucky buggers?

Timing is everything

However, the reasons for these notable oversights are easily understood. Sadly this summer, the world is ablaze with death and terror from East to West and various points in between.  In Gaza, the Ukraine, Syria, Iraq, Ferguson and elsewhere there is a conflagration on a combined scale that this blogger cannot remember happening concurrently for many years.

The issues seem overwhelming and this blog is not equipped to comment meaningfully on every catastrophe made by man or natural disaster that affects this fragile planet.  There are, however, some things that seem more easily digestible.  Easier to understand because they are very human in their nature. Things like racism and its pernicious effects on the societies where it has taken hold.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Ua29jTR9S0]

© BBC

Most objective commentators acknowledge that racism in America remains one of its greatest challenges. Yet, as anyone who has followed events in Ferguson on Twitter will tell you, there are plenty of Americans (and not just the trolls) who will swear blind that racism is not an issue in Ferguson or anywhere else in the US.  These Tweets are not, as I had hoped, part of some silly season madness.  They are, apparently, earnestly held beliefs as the messages received by my Twitter account confirms.  For example meet Jeremy X:

Racist America Tweets

Click on image to enlage

And the more intelligent and ‘reasonable’ Fox News fan Rich Bolen:

Rich Bolen tweets

Click on image to enlage

Interestingly, the “what would MLK have done?” line has been used liberally by Fox News ‘analysts’ in recent days but you have to wonder, if he were leading his million man march today, whether Fox would laud him or criticise him for being an agitator.

Unfortunately for these Twitter racism deniers the fact that race is a major issue in Ferguson is clear and unequivocal.

[youtube http://youtu.be/LDphURckTo8]

© BBC

Whatever Twitter’s blinkered cohorts may think, no sensible journalist is reporting anything other than the fact that race is an issue in Ferguson.  Although as Mr Bolen rightly points out, whether race played a part in the killing of Michael Brown remains unproven. Nonetheless, it is the opinion of the UN (and of this blog) that unless the US finds a way to address the weeping sore that is racism in America, there will be many more Ferguson’s in the months and years ahead and this one is already one too many.

 *******

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