Officer Wilson will have no opportunity to be publicly exonerated.
I have been thinking about him, and the man he shot. Like many Americans, I have been wondering what exactly did happen on that fateful August night when Officer Wilson, in the line of dangerous duty, killed Mike Brown with a gun.
Based on media-driven hearsay, it sounds to me like the young policeman would have had a pretty solid defense of his actions while attempting to enforce the law. I think, as most other white folk probably do, he would have been found not guilty in a court of law.
But who am I to say? Nobody. I’m a thousand miles away, a merely curious news-seeker with no access to the facts.
Since there will be no trial, and hence no public discovery of what actually happened between Officer Wilson and Mike Brown, we will never know.
Now this tragic death becomes an open wound in our national conscience; it will not heal.
There will be no sworn testimony from Officer Wilson, nor from any witness, no questioning from a defense attorney, no cross-examination from a prosecutor.
As citizens in a nation of laws, we will never know what evidence and testimony might have been called forth in our Officer’s defense in a court of law.
But we need to know. As a nation at black and white crossroads, we do need to know what happened.
As a result of our failure to follow through with due process, the severe wound that has been opened up on our national corpus will not heal; it will fester until it boils up with infections of chronic misinformation, severe political manipulation, unresolved grief and destructive rage.
We have lost an opportunity. The United States of America will have no close-up examination of what routinely happens between a black shoplifter and a white cop on a dark night in a city that keeps no secrets.
The sad consequence of no indictment in Missouri is that police work in our cities will become more difficult, more dangerous, not less.
And Officer Wilson will have no opportunity for public exoneration from his hastily fatal decision on that dark Missouri night.
Show me some due process, and this could turn out differently for our people.
Tags: black and white, court of law, dangerous duty, due process, evidence, facts, Ferguson, injustice, justice, life and death, Mike Brown, Missouri, Officer Wilson, testimony, tragedy, what happened