President Obama will be sending Attorney General Eric Holder to Ferguson Missouri to monitor the violence and unrest taking place in the St. Louis suburb.
Protests and riots have broken out in Ferguson after 18-year old Michael Brown was gunned down by police. Brown was unarmed and had no criminal record, but police assumed he had taken part in a robbery committed minutes before the shooting. Since his death, people in Ferguson have been protesting both peacefully and violently. Some riots have escalated to the point of Molotov cocktails and retaliation against the police force.
In response, President Obama has said something must be done about the “small minority” of protesters who are acting violently. According to USA Today, Obama believes looting and makeshift explosives are not the correct way to handle the situation.
“Let’s seek to heal rather than to wound each other,” Obama said in a statement made at the White House. “They are damaging the cause. They are not advancing it.”
But President Obama also does not support the police force fighting back with heavy military weapons and equipment. Obama called for the people of Ferguson to peacefully resolve “the gulf of mistrust” between the protesters and the local law enforcement. The President would also like the limit the use of the National Guard in Ferguson as much as possible.
The action Obama has taken to subdue the uprisings in Ferguson includes sending Attorney General Eric Holder to Missouri to meet with FBI agents and the Justice Department, hoping to further discuss the investigation of Michael Brown’s death.
According to Yahoo News, Obama has said that Holder “will receive an update from them on their progress. He will also be meeting with other leaders in the community whose support is so critical to bringing about peace and calm in Ferguson.”
Obama does seem to side with the protesters in the sentiment that Michael Brown’s death never should have happened. He claims to understand that there are flaws in the criminal justice system that allow for institutionalized racism:
“While I understand the passions and the anger that arise over the death of Michael Brown, giving in to that anger by looting or carrying guns and even attacking the police only serves to raise tensions and stir chaos. It undermines rather than advancing justice.”
But Obama also believes that people are responsible for their own decisions:
“Here are young black men that commit crime,” Obama said. “And we can argue about why that happens: because of the poverty they were born into, or the lack of opportunity. or the school systems that failed them or what have you. But if they commit a crime, then they need to be prosecuted, because every community has an interest in public safety.”
Check back with The Inquisitr for more updates on the situation in Ferguson.