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View Diary: Michael Brown 'was no angel', the New York Times says (234 comments)

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  •  I object to the Times adding to the heap... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FogCityJohn

    ...of informational irrelevancy out there.

    This is really very simple.

    If there were an obituary about me, it would not include anything about my marijuana use, though that would be a true thing that a reporter might learn. It would not include anything about any of my brushes with the law, or anything about my interest in psychedelic music, which might suggest that I run with a mind-altering crowd, or metal, which might suggest that I run with whiskey enthusiasts. It wouldn't include those things because they are, in the grand sweep of my life, what scientists call "completely fucking irrelevant."

    The same thing could be said of any white teen who had died of cancer. If you saw an obit piece about that kid and it included things about how he was "no angel" you would be rightfully gobsmacked -- because, again, Completely Fucking Irrelevant.

    So why are they relevant to Mike Brown? Who cares if he had a few drinks or smoked a few joints? Why would you print this if not to demonstrate that his life is somehow an algebraic equation that includes his misjudgments as variables and on the other end of the "equals" sign some form of appraisal of his character? That is obviously its intent, and it is obviously emblematic of the media's current reflexive obsession with "balance" at the expense of "truth."

    The truth about Mike Brown is that he was a regular, normal kid who was slaughtered in his prime for sassing a cop. The fact that he rolled blunts should not be used to fog that mirror.

    Almost everything you do will seem insignificant, but it is most important that you do it.

    by The Termite on Mon Aug 25, 2014 at 01:57:03 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  this isn't an obit (nt) (0+ / 0-)
      •  Okay, stipulated. (0+ / 0-)

        And?

        Almost everything you do will seem insignificant, but it is most important that you do it.

        by The Termite on Mon Aug 25, 2014 at 02:24:28 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  in an article about yourself (0+ / 0-)

          it might include references to your hobbies if people interviewed mentioned your hobbies.

          it might include your run-ins with the law, especially if the reason you were being profiled was because you had been murdered by a law-enforcement officer.

          it might include specific details of your life that have been highlighted in other places to give them their proper context. which is to say that a black teenager who lives in a poor neighborhood and raps and smokes pot is, as you say, "a regular, normal kid".

          Hiding the truth about that, not telling us about him, does nothing to help anyone to understand him or the millions of other young men out there just like him. Which strikes me as the point of writing an article about him and the reason I read the article at all.

          I didn't read it (or the accompanying article about the cop) looking for evidence. I just wanted to understand a little about who he was and what his life was like.

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