One Year Later: 8 Moments That Proved That Michael Brown’s Death Was Definitely About Race
The Ferguson Police Department’s History of Racism
Darren Wilson, the ex-cop who killed Michael Brown, worked for the Ferguson Police Department, which is “guilty of racism as well as systematic and often brutal targeting of African American citizens,” according to a 2015 article written by Lauren McCauley, a staff writer for Common Dreams. In fact, a federal investigation reveals that while Ferguson has a population that is 67 percent Black, Black individuals account for 96 percent of citizens arrested during traffic stops. In addition, 88 percent of cases filed concerning police brutality and excessive force involve Black victims. Even Wilson’s supervisor, Sgt. William Mudd, was fired for emailing a racist joke around the department.
Wilson Upholds Racist Stereotypes
When describing his interaction with Brown, Wilson stated the following: “He looked up at me and had the most intense aggressive face. The only way I can describe it, it looks like a demon, that’s how angry he looked.” The undertones of his description of Brown closely mimic the historical stereotypical caricature of the “brute.” An article released by the Jim Crow Museum of Ferris State University conveys that this caricature “portrays black men as innately savage, animalistic, destructive, and criminal — deserving punishment, maybe death. This brute is a fiend, a sociopath, an anti-social menace. Black brutes are depicted as hideous, terrifying predators who target helpless victims, especially white women.”