The Ferguson Effect

For those following the “police-involved” shooting of Alton Sterling, here are the court records of his arrest history. Facts are facts: he has a long history of violence and was arrested twice for carrying an illegal weapon.

Court records for Alton Sterling:

09/09/96: Aggravated battery

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10/31/97: Second-degree battery

01/06/98: Simple battery

05/04/00: Public intimidation

09/20/00: Carnal knowledge of a juvenile

09/04/01: Domestic violence

03/17/06: Simple criminal damage to property, simple robbery, simple theft, drug possession, misrepresentation during booking, simple battery, aggravated battery

07/11/05: Receiving stolen things

09/12/05: Burglary of inhabited dwelling place

03/17/06: Simple criminal damage to property, simple robbery, simple theft, drug possession, misrepresentation during booking, simple battery, aggravated battery

04/12/06: Aggravated battery, simple criminal damage to property, disturbing the peace, unauthorized entry

04/04/08: Domestic abuse battery

06/03/09: Resisting an officer, drug possession, receiving stolen things, possession of stolen firearm, illegal carrying of a weapon, CD sound reproduction without consent

10/12/09: Illegal carrying of weapon, marijuana possession

08/13/15: Failure to register as a sex offender

04/08/16: Failure to register as a sex offender

06/14/16: Ecstasy and marijuana possession

Alton Sterling was a man the Baton Rouge Police Department knew to be a violent, repeat defender who had a gun, resisted arrest, and died as a result. A tragedy? Yes. Does the black community have anything to be angry about? Yes. Are they going about solving that problem in an intelligent, reasonable manner?  No.

Black Americans made great progress under the leadership of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. who was a disciple of Mahatma Gandhi of India. Gandhi led a mass of millions of oppressed Indians to relative freedom and we say “relative” as remnants of the caste system remain, but Gandhi’s philosophy of peaceful resistance so thoughtful people can prevail appears to have died with Gandhi and King.

There is an informal caste system in America and other western cultures. If you are born black you have a more difficult time reaching the top, but no more than being born poor and white.  The line of demarcation is how you speak.

It is natural that rich, intelligent and educated people like to be with their own kind, just as children prefer to play with children than adults. The key is in behaviors. You need to learn the language and ways of the group you aspire to join. That is the key.

This came to a boiling in Ferguson, Missouri, a suburb of Saint Louis, where Michael Brown attacked a police officer, tried to take his service pistol, failed, but continued the attack and was killed as a result.  Witnesses claimed Brown surrendered with his hands up in a gesture that has become the mantra of the movement “Black Lives Matter,” who are offended by the response, “All lives matter!”

Those same witnesses recanted Michael Brown’s surrender gesture and admitted that he did attack the officer with a head-down, head-butting attack, which explained the lethal bullet in the top of his head, but the gesture remains the signature of the insane movement that continues taking lives in our streets!  When will truth prevail?

Apparently it will proceed as none of our elected ruling class dares to step up and declare the lie for what it is.

Most Americans are pleased to see someone who has made the effort to assimilate; to show that America works even in our diversity. We have benefited from our mix of cultures, but at a price and we are still paying – now painfully, from the Ferguson effect.

Adrian Vance

Adrian Vance is a writer and producer of educational films, filmstrips and audio programs with over 325 productions from script to screen. See a partial list of my credits at . And, have written for ten national magazines, been on the masthead of two as an Editor, done a dozen books and am an FCC licensed broadcaster with ten years of on-air experience in radio and television. See my blog, "The Two Minute Conservative" at where you will find over 3200 daily pieces, enough material to produce 25 novel length books.

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