White cop, black boy hug at Portland rally for Ferguson: story behind striking photo



sweet, strong and sad. I love them both.


Wow. Much replies. Many troll food.

1 Like

Best photo I’ve seen in a while.

It just about belongs on a t-shirt, I reckon

1 Like

1 Like

Yeah, I was tempted to report him, rather than reply to him, but some troll posts have been allowed to remain, even if the troll got banned for 250+ years (not making that up), because the replies were edifying.

This particular time, I chose poorly…


I’m not trying to deny that fact. I’m saying throwing out comments that imply “it’s the racists fault” doesn’t solve anything. How about people start coming up with some possible solutions other than burning down your own neighborhood. Here are some of my ideas, and I will be using the term of President Obama, “communities of color”:

-The communities of color need to produce a viable candidate for sheriff. If Ferguson county is 60%+ black (not sure if that is the number, but what I read) then they need to be doing their part to oust the current sheriff if he is part of the problem - by voting for someone who will represent them. (and not just sheriff, but all parts of their local government)

-What can these communities do to get the police force more representative of their racial and cultural makeup? If racism is a problem of the police force in a predominately black county, then one way to solve that problem is to get more black officers to better represent that community. Black people of the community, sign up for the police force!

-Get more and higher quality video and audio recording on the officers and their vehicles - this way the facts can come out - and racist agendas can’t be hidden as easily.

In about 5 minutes I just thought of 3 things that could probably help. My original comments were meant to be constructive, i just didn’t see the article’s comments as such - one man’s opinion.

1 Like

Yes, perfect. I was waiting for it through the whole video and he said it at the end. Basically, If we don’t like what happened we need to go out and change things. Solutions are needed. Like he said, riots are the effect. The cause was the injustice. Now we need to PREVENT the injustice rather than seeing it repeat over and over.

My original point was that the police aren’t just a black problem, they are all of our problems, I didn’t feel what I quoted from the article was fair, that’s all.

And for all those other replies, i’m not a troll - at least as far as I know :wink:

This is really strong stuff. We will win after all.

1 Like

I want a world that looks like that every day, can I please have that?


A grotesque image. The inevitable ad’s tag line will read - “We’re all in this together - support law enforcement… and stay out of trouble”.

When do we get pictures of Wall Street hedge fund managers embracing homeless teenagers?


I second your cynicism.The kid is clearly genuine, but I suspect the cop simply sees the photo opportunity.
I wonder how many skulls the Sergeant has cracked to date.

1 Like

We need an award for police who don’t rise to the bait and become part of a ‘suicide by cop’ tragedy.

1 Like

The story behind this striking photo is that there’s a lot of social machinery producing propaganda for police.


I don’t know… isn’t this part of the problem, the assumption that cops are outside of the communities that are supposed to be serving - or that they often are from outside the communities they are policing? This was often a demand during civil rights - more cops in black communities, from black communities.

I wonder how often Darren Wilson actually walked his beat, instead of driving it, only interacting with people when he rolled down his windows or when he made a traffic stop? I wonder how many people he knew in the community on a friendly, person to person basis (likely none, or very few)? I wonder if what happened was in part driven by the fact that he didn’t know Brown, the fiend he was walking with, or their parents, but saw himself as an outsider, “policing” the community, instead of a public servant, paid to help mediate and keep the community safe. Of course, this goes along with seeing the community he’s policing as different from himself, in a racially charged context.

The cops do this to themselves, they put themselves outside of the communities they serve, when they’d do a better job and be more welcomed into the community if they actually got to know the people they served and if they had the mindset that they served the community rather than seeing the community as antagonistic, largely based on race (though they’d rarely admit that). This might well be a piece of well-placed propaganda and I understand your skepticism, but it also might be an authentic interaction between two community members.

Cops are still human beings, even when they act in an utterly inhuman way, as I believe Wilson had. I think that means that they should be held accountable (and to a higher standard when they break the law), which is what makes the decision not to indict Wilson so frustrating and infuriating.


Demanding that police be drawn from local communities and be representative of them is a legitimate demand, and could mitigate some of the problems we have with police. But only mitigate, and only temporarily, because the problems we have with police are inherent in the intended purpose of policing. Police exist to control populations and protect private property. It’s an intrinsically adversarial relationship between police and the majority of people, and that leads directly to the alienation of police and their isolation from communities they control.

1 Like

I think you’re correct, though I’m sure there are people who go into it with an actual notion of protecting people, and probably realizing this makes them more alienated and probably angry (which they take out on the people they should serve and protect. It’s probably time for a major overhaul of systems of policing, or just do away with it altogether. There are problaby lots of tings in our society we could do away with…

Yes, exactly, and once in a while, you hear from such a person – a whistleblower, or someone earnestly trying to reform the police from within. My main concern here is that we can’t fix the police, just limit the harm they cause, until we’ve destroyed the unjust structures police are intended to protect.

1 Like

I’m simply not one of those people who is inherently anti-police, and I say this as someone who has been attacked by police riding horses and clubbing with batons during the course of peaceful (yet direct action) protest. I see this picture and give it the benefit of the doubt. Read the article, and then read the additional article about this boy’s life. I think there’s an excellent chance this boy touched the police officer personally, and drove home the fact that this community in uproar is made up of real people, many of them wonderful. That’s important. And don’t freaking disrespect this amazing kid, who if you take a couple moments to read about seems to be a genuinely amazing human being, by framing this photo as pro-police propaganda. That is certainly not how the article around the photo frames it.


Policing that reinforces unjust systems is inherently part of that system, and so it’s my opinion that reform of the core system and the police structure that often serves to protect it will inherently have to be tackled at the same time. They are not separate things, and frankly I feel there’s a lot to be gained by getting more police on the side of genuine justice, which IMHO is almost entirely economic in nature. The vast vast majority of police are either working poor, or struggling to maintain a middle class lifestyle. They are potential allies, I think, and more bridges can be built connecting communities to their local police.

1 Like