As a white woman from the suburban area of Waterford, CT, I have no social, economic, gender, or racial connection to Michael Brown of Ferguson, MO. Nor do I have any sort of connection to his neighborhood, his friends, his family, or his situation. In fact, in many senses, Michael Brown and the world he lived in were as far removed from me as could possibly be. Until he was shot and killed by police officer Darren Wilson August 9th 2014. Then, Michael Brown and the world he lived in was brought to my attention, and the attention of the world.
In his article, “Ferguson: An American Story”, Raymond Codrington speaks about how the murder of Mike Brown brought the issue of racial and social justice to the forefront of American minds, especially the issue of racial profiling. “Blacks made up 86% of traffic stops in Ferguson. At the same time, blacks were 92% of vehicle searches,” writes Codrington. Clearly America still suffers from racism, subconscious or not. There have been too many other instances like Mike Brown’s, but none of them have sparked the outrage that Brown’s has.
Even if this powerful case doesn’t change anything in the way that the law treats black people, especially young black men, I think it will be important to track how much of an impact this has on American culture and American perception of race. Even if nothing is done to improve the police force of Ferguson, and of America in general, this incident will have a huge impact on American culture, and I think it’s important that we continue to follow the ramifications of the Mike Brown case.
Source: Ferguson: An American Story by Raymond Codrington