Jeezy Sends Prayers to Ferguson

Jeezy Sends Prayers to Ferguson

Atlanta rapper weighs in on aftermath of grand jury decision in Michael Brown shooting.

Published November 26, 2014

Before a decision in the shooting death of Michael Brown by police officer Darren Wilson was revealed Monday night (Nov. 24), authorities in cities all over the country were bracing for protests. Preemptive preparations were an early indication of what was later announced: Wilson would not face criminal charges for gunning down Brown.

Wilson justified his actions during his first television interview yesterday, noting that he would not have done anything differently. In his grand jury testimony, the six-year veteran claimed that Brown had the look of a “demon” and that he feared for his life. While the teen is not here to share his side of the story, what some see as the vilification of the victim is a story that’s all too familiar for Jeezy.

In a written statement to BET.com, which he later shared on Instagram, the Atlanta native called for an end to the violence and racial profiling. “Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Tamir Rice and Akai Gurley all had their lives and dreams taken by the same people that pledged to uphold the community,” he said. “This has to stop, may God be with Ferguson, and may our prayers be answered.”

The “Seen It All” rapper closed with the John E. Lewis quote, “If not us, then who? If not now, then when?” 

Jeezy is among a list of artists that includes Beyoncé, Diddy, Chris Brown, Killer Mike, Q-Tip and Rihanna, who have all expressed their thoughts on the latest chapter in what has been three months of unrest for the people of Ferguson. Following Monday’s press conference held by St. Louis prosecuting attorney Robert McCulloch, many took their frustrations (or elation, depending on which side of the fence they stood on) to social media  and into the streets. 

McCulloch is now being slammed for not properly cross-examining Wilson, so as to allegedly manipulate an outcome in the officer’s favor. ”A prosecutor has an obligation to ask questions and clarify testimony for grand jurors. This prosecutor did worse than abdicate his responsibility: He structured the presentation so the juror would vote no true bill,” Fordham University law professor James A. Cohen told the Los Angeles Times

In addition, McCulloch has an indirect connection to the newly married cop, as board president of Backstoppers Inc., a non-profit set up for families of first responders and police officers, including Wilson. However, Backstoppers has maintained that it has not "benefited from any fundraising activities involving Ferguson” like the sale of “We Support Officer Darren Wilson” T-shirts printed to raise money for the 28-year-old’s defense funds. Speculation that the case was mishandled plays into a narrative likely to negatively fuel ongoing protests.

As of Tuesday, more than 130 protests in solidarity with Ferguson were planned in 37 states around the nation.    

 

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(Photos from Left: Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images, Bennett Raglin/BET/Getty Images)

 

Written by Latifah Muhammad

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