Missouri failed Kajieme Powell. His life was taken because for centuries, Missouri has devalued black life in countless ways. There was no better place for this movement for black lives to be born because it is one of the hardest places to achieve racial equity.
The prosecutor says cops "could have reasonably believed the use of deadly force was necessary."
This is not just the all too familiar headline focusing on a young unarmed African American male shot dead by police, but also the story of a man who needed mental health assistance and instead of receiving the professional assistance he so desperately needed, he received fatal bullets.
The efforts to deny the innocence of Brown and other black victims, in the name of preserving the innocence of the likes of Darren Wilson, of white America, and the nation as a whole is commonplace.
The NRA fully understands the racial dynamic at play here. As long as we can blame something other than guns, America will not have to come to terms with the truth that violence is a complicated phenomenon that is made far more lethal by the easy availability and killing power of firearms.
Barbers and hairdressers, like Dionne Flowers of St. Louis, are an integral part of the society. The inconceivable, unknown detail in this story is that Dionne had more training for her license as a hairdresser, than the officers who pulled the trigger on Kajieme Powel had for their licenses.
Only by participating in the political process, building trust and cooperation with people unlike us, and using our smartphone cameras to expose official misconduct can we make America -- to borrow Dr. King's words -- be true to what we said on paper.
In the wake of the recent deaths at police hands of Michael Brown and so many others, people have rightly called for a thorough empirical analysis of how often and under what circumstances the police shoot civilians.
What's disturbing is the lack of tact by police in incidences like this. No calls to a supervisor. No tasers to disable the
Warning: The video above contains graphic content. Twenty years later, a police beating or shooting has a decent chance of