Thursday, 9 January 2014

MURDER BY COP?

According to a jury of ten British citizens, Mark Duggan, a young Black man, shot by a group of armed police officers in North London in August 2011, was lawfully shot to death; but was also unarmed at the time.  A gun he was alleged to have been carrying, in his taxi, was metres away in the grass when he was shot dead.  This was announced yesterday, and even The Guardian editorial while upset with the act, today trotted out the platitudes about respecting the jury's decision.  Why is authority and law always to be respected in the UK, when, time and again, it shows itself to be partial and at times, yes, corrupt or broken? Clearly, to be a Black man in London is to be a marked man.  All it takes to be killed is for a police office to think you have a gun.  And, even if you don't, he can lawfully shoot to kill.  This is open season on innocent people.  We have been told the police conduct thousands of anti-gun raids each year, with very few serious shootings (one or less each year).  That's good - but why was what amounted to a SWAT team converging on a taxi to stop a man who might have had a pistol?  That seems like excessive force, endangering the public on the street and of course the innocent mini-cab driver, as well.  The penalty for possession of an illegal firearm is not summary execution - so why was Duggan shot dead, when according to an eyewitness he was surrendering, unarmed?  This is sick double-think, and this jury has made an error of judgement, and we should be allowed to say so, if, as a greater public, our hearts and minds demand justice - something bigger, it seems, than the law.
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