The Tragedy of the Tragedy
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Politics and Activism

The Tragedy of the Tragedy

The Tragedy of the Tragedy

In light of recent events, I think it's time that someone speaks out. The event that happened at Ferguson, Missouri on August 9, 2014 and those that have occurred subsequent to the shooting months after will surely be written about in our nation's history books. 

Every human life is meaningful, and although it is a tragedy every time a human life is lost, there are also appropriate ways to respond to the issue of social justice. 

As a citizen of the United States of America, I pride myself in the fact that we have the freedom to be able to peacefully speak out for the rights that we believe in/deserve. Injustice is happening all over the world, and it is our duty as citizens of the free world to stand up for what is right. 

Living in the nation's capital, I see every day examples of our first amendment being put into action. Just the fact that one of our local protestors, Concepcion Picciotto, is known as being the longest continuous political protestor in the United States is proof enough of our citizen's dedication to their rights. 

With that being said, I am deeply saddened by the choices of our citizens in light of the grand jury decision not to indict Officer Darren Wilson. The citizens of Ferguson as well as those from all across the country take our first amendment rights that we are lucky to have and completely put them to shame. Violence, riots, looting, and destroying property is not a way to respond to presumed social injustice. 

What makes me truly sad is the fact that the mother of the victim came out herself after the trial, stating that in light of the incident, only peaceful protest would be tolerated. People have not only shamed themselves with their ridiculous reactions to the decision, but they are shaming the lives of Michael Brown and his family. 

This argument is not to put anyone's beliefs down, or to discredit anyone with how they view the decision not to indict Officer Wilson. I believe everyone is entitled to their own opinion NO MATTER what that opinion is. That is the beauty of being able to live in a country like the United States. We are able to consciously decide as citizens what we believe to be right and wrong and we are freely able to speak out on that behalf. But does that freedom mean that we can break into stores and go on looting sprees? Should we be allowed to set buildings and property on fire and flip police cars over because we have been "wronged"? 

That is where I assert myself in saying that NO ONE has the right to do those things. None of those things will change the fact that Michael Brown died. Every single act of violence is completely destroying a community; a community of citizens, in which many of those citizens are children. 

Many argue the point that our nation was founded upon violence and riots, which is a ridiculous claim to make. Yes, there has been plenty of riots, and there has been plenty of violence that has made up our nation's history, but that is not the root or the core of our nation's integrity. We need to hold ourselves to much higher standards because so many other nations look to us as the beacon of liberty and freedom. 

You may feel that this is the exact reason why we need to speak out in response to the Michael Brown shooting. However, stop and think about productive ways you could speak out on the issue. The beauty of our nation is that we have the power to enact change. If we feel that a decision was made out of social injustice, we, as citizens, can speak up on that matter. 

We can write letters to our congressmen, we can PEACEFULLY protest, we can start organizations, we can donate money. There are so many ways to exercise our rights in much more productive ways than killing, looting, and violence. A

gain, this argument was never intended to put anyone's beliefs down. After so many days of being "afraid" to actually assert my opinion on the events of Ferguson, I am now sure that even if no one of importance reads this message, at least it is out there, and maybe someone could be affected by it. My name is Natalie Ellis and I am proud to exercise my First Amendment rights as a citizen of the United States of America.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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