POV | Ferguson, Missouri: How Not to Handle a Crisis (8/19/14)
There should be a Harvard case study in Ferguson, Missouri to demonstrate the absolute worst way to handle a city crisis. The city leaders took a very unfortunate, tragic event and mismanaged it into a full fledged riot.
Although many people think they know exactly what happened that night when Michael Brown, a young black man, was shot by a white police officer, we don't. We weren't there. But it is fair to demand honest answers.
Peaceful, but high tension protests escalated into riots and looting when out of town agitators and thugs started arriving. Looting and stealing innocent people's property cannot ever be justified and it tainted the protestor's message. Speaking of out of town agitators, our own Councilwoman Attica Scott added some unwelcome nonsense of her own intended to inflame the situation when she said, "Police officers are paid by taxpayer dollars. The budget is approved by some local government to then pay these individuals to kill our babies." Ms. Scott, if you can't say something smarter than that, just shut up.
Police officers in riot gear over reacted by trying to shut the media down. They tear-gassed a TV crew working on a stand-up two blocks from the action. That is standard operating procedure in Syria, not the United States.
Hopefully our city leaders and all of us can learn from the debacle that Ferguson has become.