The Warya Tribune

Highlighting the Biggest News Events of 2014

Hands up! Don't Shoot!

Ferguson Police officers charge man who stands with his hands up - Jeff Roberson/AP

By: Arjan Warya

           After reviewing the nation's biggest events of 2014, the Warya Tribune has decided that the Ferguson Riots is the most impactful moment in the United States. As police shot and killed Michael Brown in August, the city of Ferguson, MO erupted as protests began against the police. People gathered in the thousands to riot against the police department. Crowds did not die don even though police used rubber bullets and tear gas. Riots lasted until the end of August.
          Officer Darren Wilson was let off the hook for shooting and killing Michael Brown in November. A BBC article states, "Many in the African-American community had called for Mr Wilson to be charged with murder, but after three months of deliberation a Missouri grand jury - of nine white and three black members - made no recommendation of charges" (BBC). Riots erupted once again. Violence spread throughout the town of Ferguson as protestors looted and damaged property. Police force was used once again to handle crowds. Thus, tear gas and rubber bullets were also utilized against violent people.
          Protestors in Ferguson felt as if their actions were justified. The outrage and anger built up and protestors could not hold it in anymore. The issues of race and police brutality towards African Americans was highlighted and the protestors soon became anti-police. However, pro-police activists and police officers felt as if the actions of Officer Wilson were justified. The whole issue of self defense was brought up and argued. People felt as if Officer Wilson did his civic duty as he should have. Being a unbiased reporter who witnessed the Ferguson Riots through news outlets and social media, my opinion is very mixed. Although I am pro-police, as most people are, I am totally against police brutality. Yet, as the details of the day Michael Brown was shot are still not truly justified, a true standpoint on the issue, to me, is not logical. However, most people have chosen sides, which has caused the horrendous Ferguson Riots.
        The Ferguson Trial and Riots affected not only Ferguson, but the entire United States. Major cities across the nation held protests, both peaceful and violent. Cities included Oakland, New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago. Chants of "hands up, don't shoot" were yelled out by many, including St. Louis Rams football players. As a CNN article stated, "The gesture that Cook and teammates Stedman Bailey, Tavon Austin, Chris Givens and Kenny Britt made when taking the field Sunday is the same one protesters have used to decry the death of unarmed black teen Michael Brown" (CNN). The issue of race was very evident, and the topic was discussed all over. Yet, in the end, the shooting death of Michael Brown and the Ferguson Riots affected all citizens of all colors, backgrounds, and ethnicities. Thus, this incident was the most important event in the United States in 2014.

Police charge with rifles drawn amidst tear gas - Getty Images


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