That the college administration, faculty and Bulletin editors approved publication of an article written by a dance instructor commenting on the Ferguson issue is appalling. Without any evidence, unaware of the law, and exhibiting a protest viewpoint, the author spun a web of misinformation, mistakes, and ignorance of the case. What happened to the “hands up” signal when several witnesses denied this conduct occurred? The author accepted the media version reporting six shots in the victim’s back; the autopsy attributed all shots to the front of the body. The author is sickened by the multiple autopsies. For her information, autopsies are mandatory in homicide cases and the second one [was] ordered by the family. Did she know the FBI conducted an additional autopsy?
The author immediately convicted the officer without knowing a shred of evidence, unaware that the state of Missouri built courthouses for the purpose of resolving disputes and conducting trials in criminal cases. The Ferguson incident resonates with the history of the Duke University faculty several years ago when they suspended four white students who allegedly raped a black female stripper. The university neither held a hearing nor conducted an investigation. Unfortunately for the faculty, the stripper confessed she had lied. Later, she was convicted of murder in an unrelated case. You would have thought an educated and literate faculty would not act like the Ferguson criminals except the Duke professors didn’t burn down buildings.
The Ferguson case also duplicates the Zimmerman trial. The prosecutor had no case from the beginning, and filed a second-degree murder charge in the obvious hope the jury would compromise the conflicting evidence with a verdict of involuntary manslaughter. The jury found the security guard “not guilty” in a few hours, and we had another riot. And now the author wants to convict New York police officers of something. The grand jury refused to indict. Another riot.
Apparently a segment of the American population are unaware of the justice system in this country where we don’t lynch people to avoid the inconvenience of a trial. The grand jury in Ferguson listened to extensive conflicting evidence and understood a trial jury would never convict the officer when confronted with court rules applying a presumption of innocence, the burden of proof imposed on the prosecution, the standard of guilt “beyond a reasonable doubt,” and by a unanimous vote of 12 jurors.
According to The Los Angeles Times, some witnesses changed their story, others lied, or lacked personal knowledge of the facts. The Times described the neighborhood of the shooting riddled with crime, and its inhabitants committed the highest number of homicides in the city. The U.S. attorney flew to Ferguson and complained about the police department despite his lack of any knowledge of the evidence. Not ever having tried a case, he sounded comparable to the protesters — and the author — who would ignore the evidence and not wait for a trial. Next time, the author should consider the relevant and admissible evidence before rendering a premature verdict. She needs a course in critical thinking, allegedly offered by the faculty.
For the college to publish this author, who also laments the pathos of black men speaking ad hominem, repeating unverified allegations, and characterized as self-serving witnesses, defies explanation. Next time you might want someone to write an article on the Pennsylvania state trooper who was murdered; the two deputy sheriffs in northern California who were killed; the SWAT officer in Pomona, California, who was killed; and the state trooper in Arizona who was killed. A few solicitous words by the author to business owners whose buildings were burned, burglarized, looted, and vandalized by predators, might have been warranted. And we didn’t need the Los Angeles freeways blocked by the ignorant protesting something they knew nothing about.
The college article was written before two New York police officers were assassinated. Two more have been shot. Strange, no riots.
Delete my name from the mailing list.
Lawrence Waddington ’53
Judge of the Superior Court (retired)
Santa Monica, California
It is disheartening that Assistant Professor of Dance Anusha Kedhar would be allowed to publish her “Hands Up! Don’t Shoot!” article in the latest CC Bulletin.
There is more than enough real racism without making it up where it does not exist. False blood libels like this are wrong and destructive on so many levels.
Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson was confronted and attacked by Michael Brown; not the other way around.
Did she read the grand jury testimony? Did she watch Brown’s strong-arm robbery? Why no mention of this? The “Hands Up! Don’t Shoot!” version of events came from Brown’s accomplice. Does she even care what the objective black eyewitnesses said?
Ms. Kedhar and others are choreo-race-baiting here. This CC prof grotesquely asserts, “Alive, blackness was all the ‘proof’ Wilson needed to ascertain Michael Brown’s guilt.” Come on!
Ms. Kedhar might stick to dance. Or write fiction.
This self-indulgent article reveals only her own bias, and I worry that CC kids and alums should receive this sort of outrageous tripe from a CC faculty member.
Craig Silverman ’78
What has critical thinking at Colorado College come to? The “Hands Up! Don’t Shoot!” article in the December 2014 Bulletin is all about feelings and represents nothing to do with facts, the law, and the truth about what really took place in Ferguson.
The article might have had more validity if written after the facts of the case were released. Then at least feelings about facts could be discussed, instead of feelings about myths. “Hands Up! Don’t Shoot” never happened, but plenty of rioting and destruction resulted from people who were not ready to wait and/or accept the facts.
Jeff Seiler ’76
Kudos for College
Once again the Bulletin brings tears to my eyes. The work of the college seems so vital, so centered on justice and less, quite frankly, centered on social standing than when I was there. As a working-class kid, I struggled to find my way. But now it looks to me like you are opening the door to more and more young people. If it is as good as it looks on paper, I commend you.
Kellie Teter ’88