Howard Zinn: The Problem IS Civil Obedience (1971) as read by Matt Damon...Aka thoughts on Ferguson.

Chris Gibbs Diary, Politics & Religion
I recently went and saw a friend of mine Jesse Williams do a reading of this Howard Zinn speech. I immediately thought of it again after seeing what happened last night in Ferguson. Here is a version of Matt Damon recounting the speech. But a couple things before you watch the video, and please do... I wish I could say I was surprised by what happened in last nights "grand jury" decision. I wish I could say that I expected justice. Here are a few points to ponder:
  • Darren Wilson's initial police report was nearly blank and had no details of what happened. This is important because typically this would have all the information of what happened that day as a first hand account from the police. Since he waited so long to eventually fill one out (if he ever did) he was able to hear and see the evidence and make his story fit the evidence story. Thus by the time he got to trial he could have formed his version of the story as he pleased or based on the physical evidence.
  • A grand jury isn't even necessary. The prosecutor could have simply brought this to trial without this step.
  • The grand jury step has a +90% success rate, because there is typically no defense. The prosecutor just brings his/her points to the table to show that there is enough evidence for this to even go to trial. In this case the persecutor let the jury hear opposing arguments. Almost as if he didn't want this to go to trial.
There are countless other points to be made but it smells like a big "set up" to me and as Josey Wales character says in A Brief History of Seven Killings, "If it's not so, it's nearly so...". Here is a link to an interesting read on the whole thing: