Friday, December 19, 2014

2014: The Year In Review (The Person of The Year)

       This year's person of the year was virtually unknown until one dramatic event which may change the course of history. This year's choice was very hard to make because all three runners up are deserving but I can only pick one.( Previous winners: 2013- Edward Snowden, 2012- Barack Obama)
       Before discussing the 2014 winner lets look at the runners up.  1st Runner Up - Pope Francis. Pope Francis is a progressive Pope who forced his church to tone down the conservative rhetoric about abortion without abandoning the church's long standing position. This Pope did away with all traces of extravagance shown by his predecessors as well break ties with long standing conservative institutions, even dismissing high level office holders he felt were too insensitive to the needs of the poor. This Pope played a vital role in the return of normal relations between Cuba and The United States.  
     The second runner-up is New York Times columnist James Risen. There was a time when good investigative reporting was praised. The truth was appreciated regardless of what it revealed. Today there is no Edward R. Murrow because journalists may lose their freedom or even their lives if what they are reporting is detrimental to those of have real power and influence. There was a time when a reporter did not have to reveal his source. Those days are long gone. One of a dying breed of journalists James Risen steadfastly insists on not revealing a source, by refusing to do so he could be sentenced to ten years in jail. Mr. Risen is a true "profile in courage".
     The 2014 Person of the Year is.........The Ferguson Protester. The white police of Ferguson Missouri have been preying on the majority African-American community long before Darren Wilson murdered unarmed black teenager Michael Brown. They have raised money by targeting black motorists with excessive traffic fines. Many who were poor and couldn't afford capable lawyers were sent to jail and as a consequence were put into penal system. When you go to apply for a job and you're asked the question "Have you ever been incarcerated?" You have to say "yes". You're saying it was only a traffic violation means absolutely nothing to a potential employer once you have admitted to spending time behind bars. When Darren Wilson was not even indicted for the murder of Michael Brown The Ferguson African-American youth collectively  said "no more" and someone is going to pay for Mike Brown's death. Of course they did not kill anyone but they did send the racist element of the city a message they could understand......loss of money. The riots proved very costly to the Ferguson business community.
     These young blacks decided that they were going to tell their own story. They decided that they would not let charismatic and sometimes self-engrandizing black leaders speak for them. They feared that the good intentioned long established black organizations had been infiltrated. I am not saying that such organizations should be ignored, but the true solution to the problem has to be found by the ones who have endured the pain. According to the Ferguson protesters when the FBI did arrive in Ferguson they didn't start by asking questions about the Ferguson police. They wanted to know who were the organizers of these demonstrations that turned into riots. This is in turn inspired a change in tactic. These young African-Americans gave the FBI many different names to the extent that they could not pinpoint one individual, some even said "We are ALL leaders of this movement".
    The mainstream media did not tell us this major event that happened in Ferguson. The first night of the demonstrations a large number of blacks went to an area near a river. The heavily armed white police officers immediately pursued them, but to their complete astonishment an even larger number of black youth surrounded them. The heavily armed police found themselves sandwiched between two large groups of predominantly adolescent blacks. Their arms were useless because if they had
shot (or killed) any one of those black teenagers they would have to face a massive attack which would eventually lead to loss of life on both sides. This was an absolutely brilliant life saving strategy which showed tactical strategy that only enhanced their collective goal to pacify and overly aggressive police department. It is for these reasons that the Ferguson Protestor is the 2014 Person of the Year.

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