A headline from yesterday’s New York Post online read: “Cardinals fans taunt Ferguson protesters in ballpark clash.”
It was true … sort of.
Those who watch only the first few minutes of the accompanying video may be convinced that that’s what occurred. The more patient will find a slightly different story.
The video was apparently taken by one of the protesters outside a recent St. Louis Cardinals game. They were there to “demand justice” for Michael Brown, the black man shot by white police officer Darren Wilson last month in Ferguson, Mo.
The Post story cited four actions by the mostly white Cardinals fans and said that their behavior amounted to taunting the protesters “with an array of racist, insensitive and nonsensical comments.”
And that’s basically all it says.
But the story is not nearly as one-sided as the Post would have us believe.
The video includes cringe-worthy moments from both sides.
One man, for example, yelled “due process,” several times, in what appeared to be a plea to let the legal process run its constitutional course, as opposed to calls from the protesters for, essentially, a lynching of Officer Darren Wilson.
In response, the demonstrators just made noise to drown him out. Granted, it was neither the time nor the place for a conversation about the intricacies of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments. However, the unwillingness of the protesters to even listen to the phrase “due process” is telling.
At one point, both sides were basically chanting “Let’s go Cardinals,” but that didn’t last long. It quickly devolved into “Let’s go Darren” on one side (reported by the Post) and “Suck my big ****” on the other (ignored by the Post).
Later in the video, one of the protesters – perhaps the man filming, because he remains off camera – addressed some of the fans directly.
“Y’all look like a bunch of buffoons, for real, supporting Darren Wilson. Do you guys support Darren Wilson?”
“Absolutely not,” said one Cardinal fan. “Cops should never kills kids. But what you’re doing is not helping nothing.”
Neither does hopelessly one-sided reporting by the Post.
Most of the video is difficult to hear, understand, or interpret.
Perhaps the clearest message the protesters asserted was their right to be there. They chanted repeatedly, “This is what democracy looks like!”
Yes, indeed it is. Warts and all.
Watch the entirety of the video here, if you can stand it:
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