We’d stopped for the evening at a nice area. The surroundings were conducive to relaxing and resting. Carmel who had only joined the trek in recent days came over. I was leaning near the open fire and poking some of the embers with a long stick. She was wearing a wide red skirt which I had not seen her in before. She smiled and sat next to me.
“How was your day?” I asked.
She smiled her fine white teeth gleaming from under her red lipstick. “Fine, but what do you think of the news of that poor black kid Michael Brown who was killed by the cop in St. Louis.”
“I read a little about it but it seems not much is known yet,” I said.
“Does it remind you of something?” she inquired.
“Not really,” I said. “That Florida case with Trevor Martin didn’t involve a cop; the black guy in New York who was killed with a choke hold by a cop isn’t really the same. We don’t know why the cop shot him so we’ll just have to wait until we know more.”
“How long do you think that’ll be?”
“I don’t know, a week, a couple of weeks. The media seems to be covering it hard. A lot of people are up in arms over it.”
“I’d say,” Carmel said as she looked at her tablet: Listen to this,“the FBI and the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division announced that they had opened separate investigations into the shooting of Brown, who is black. U.S. Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. said in a statement that he believed the shooting in Ferguson “deserves fulsome review,” and he wanted the federal inquiry to “supplement, not supplant” the investigation by police in Missouri. Justice Department officials are “aggressively pursuing” their separate inquiry into the shooting, which Holder said was “critical for preserving trust between law enforcement and communities they serve.”
She stopped. I didn’t know if she was going to read more so I said nothing.
“Don’t you think that’s weird?”
“A cop kills an 18-year-old kid and all this reaction comes about. You don’t see the disconnect?”
I stared back at her wondering what she was driving at.
“ How can you not? You were screaming about it not too long ago in your blog?”
It took me a few seconds to figure out what she was talking about. I smiled and said: “you’re right, there’s a big disconnect but I doubt anyone will pick it up.”
Carmel got up to go saying: “I’m not so sure. I saw it right away. I’m sure others did. The double standard and reaction is so out of proportion I’m sure many will see it.”
I knew what she was talking about. I went on-line and found the site she had read from. Holder also said: “In addition to the local investigation already underway, FBI agents from the St. Louis field office, working together with attorneys from the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and the U.S. attorney’s office, have opened a concurrent, federal inquiry,” Holder’s statement said. “At every step, we will work with the local investigators, who should be prepared to complete a thorough, fair investigation in their own right. I will continue to receive regular updates on this matter in the coming days.”
Yes, Carmel was right. Based on the reaction to the killing of Michael Brown as compared to the reaction to the killing of Ibragim Todashev you’d think you were in two different countries.