Grand Jury Decisions in Deaths of Mike Brown, Eric Garner Expose Reality of Capitalism
BY MARTIN SAYLES and ROBIN WAKIPAJAN | DECEMBER 8, 2014
NEW YORK, N.Y., December 7 — As we go to press, mass protests continue across the country in response to grand jury decisions that have cleared the police officers responsible for the deaths of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and Eric Garner in New York City.
On Nov. 24, a St. Louis County grand jury returned a “no true bill” (a legal term for no charges) against Darren Wilson, the Ferguson cop who shot and killed Brown while he stood with his hands in the air. Nine days later, on Dec. 3, a Staten Island grand jury handed down its own “no true bill” in the case of NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo, who applied a chokehold on Garner, provoking a heart attack.
“A System Cannot Fail Those Who It Was Never Designed to Protect.” — W.E.B. Dubois
BY THE CENTRAL COMMITTEE | NOVEMBER 25, 2014
The outcome of the so-called grand jury in the case of Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson, the killer of 18-year-old Mike Brown, should not have come as a surprise to anyone. It certainly wasn’t a surprise to those living in Ferguson, who already knew that the fix was in.
From the beginning, it was clear that none of the local or state officials, from Governor Jay Nixon to County Prosecutor Robert McCulloch to Mayor James Knowles and Chief Thomas Jackson, wanted to see Wilson face a trial in the August 9 shooting. They would have preferred to see those residents who were angry over Brown’s death quietly and forcefully swept off the streets. Indeed, that was the original plan — to drive the African American community off the streets and back into their homes through the use of their armed enforcers of “law and order.”
The events in the city of Ferguson, Missouri, just north of St. Louis, have become a watershed event in modern American politics and social relations. The cold-blooded murder of Michael Brown by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson on August 9 provoked not only massive outrage across the country, but also provided an object lesson in how the exploiting and oppressing classes choose to respond to people’s natural revulsion at the utter barbarity of capitalism in its period of decay and disintegration.