Concha: Announcing Grand Jury Decision at Night a Needlessly Reckless One


When it comes to the grand jury decision regarding Officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown, the decision on when to announce the decision is a borderline reckless one.

As you may have heard, an announcement is coming tonight out of the potential powder keg that is Ferguson, Missouri. When it comes tonight (expected at 9:00 pm EST)–at a time when darkness and the cover that comes with it for those interested in anything but peaceful protest in favor an anarchy, violence and possible death instead–and if that verdict says Wilson walks, we may look back on this moment and ask a pragmatic question: Exactly why the hell couldn’t this wait until 9:00 AM (upon canceling school that day) the following morning, when sunlight and the relatively calmer demeanor that comes early in the day would likely mean less of the aforementioned anarchy, violence and possible death?

We were told of careful planning around how exactly the grand jury’s decision would go public, which included a 48-hour heads-up for the the police to arrange a final strategy and get resources in place. Apparently that plan was tossed away quickly without explanation. And in the process, St. Louis County authorities create a made-for-prime-time-event, which will undoubtedly bring huge numbers to the cable news networks across the board leading up to and once that news breaks.

As we witnessed on our television screens in August, most of the problems–the looting, rioting, tear gas and clashes with police–almost always happened after the sun went down (with exceptions, of course). The same could happen now that darkness has fallen on Ferguson. So again, if the world has waited for months for this decision to be rendered, what’s 12 more hours in the whole scheme of things? It’s why a state of emergency and nightly curfews were enacted in Ferguson back on August 16. Said curfew ran from midnight to 5:00 AM.

They say nothing good happens after midnight. According to reports, a grand jury decision is expected at 9:00 pm EST tonight. The protests, unrest and possible clashes would likely happen no matter when that announcement came if it’s decided Officer Wilson won’t have to face trial.

But you get the feeling could be lessened to a certain degree if the news came at 9:00 AM, not 9:00 PM.

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[image via screengrab]

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