Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old unarmed black male in Baltimore (USA) died of a spinal-cord injury while in police custody. He was arrested because of ‘suspected’ suspicious criminal activity. His was a new name but unfortunately a very familiar story in the USA and around the world, as are the events following:
The anger from the death was most palpable on the day of his funeral as people asked, ‘WHY did he have to die?’
With still no reasonable explanation for the death, the inevitable happened in all its rage and savagery. In many hearts and minds there seemed to be a keen relish to the violence underlying the prexisting detachment and distrust felt by many towards the Police.
In amongst the madness it is easy to forget that down on the ground, there are just ordinary people trying to do the best they can for their families, loved ones…
…and communities. Ordinary people just trying to survive
The why being asked now, is why the violence? Why the nhilistic destruction. The initial sympathy felt by most impartial observers quickly wanes with every smashed window, Molotov cocktail and destroyed car. The rioters reduced from Supermen to jokers in the pack.
In the days following, civil war seems to ensue as the anger from the affected community starts to turn inwards, revealing in esscence the hidden battle lines between the different stratas of society…the rich and influential against the poor and the thugs.
But there are some who stand stoically, keeping faith in their community and ‘doing the right thing.’
The elders speak from beyond the grave,
Baltimore chorus : Oh, Baltimore, man, it’s hard just to live. Oh, Baltimore, man, it’s hard just to live, just to live.
It’s now a difficult time in Baltimore with no end in sight but there is a reason for the violence which cannot be ignored any longer. Freddie deserved to live to his 3 score years and ten and the person/s and organisation who took his life, should be brought to justice. Until that time the anger will not ease, rather it is spreading to people looking on.
and who really knows where this will lead
What is known is that without video footage and other forms of technology of the modern world, this age old problem would have been just another story to be forgotten.
To help out the family of Freddie please go to: http://www.gofundme.com/thefreddiegrayfund