It looks like he did. One of the grand jury exhibits in the Darren Wilson murder presentment was a bizarre diary kept by a purported witness to the shooting of Michael Brown. Charles P. Pierce, Esquire’s politics blogger, discusses the diary here. It’s quite amazing. Other than its total lack of apostrophes, it’s too perfect by a long shot
The first of its three entries for August 9 (Wow Much Writing), under the heading “8 AM,” discusses an upcoming road trip for personal and racial healing (sic plurum for missing apostrophes):
Well Im gonna take my random drive to Florisant (sic). Need to understand the Black race better so I stop calling Blacks Niggers and start calling them people. Like dad always said you cant fear or hate an entire race cause of what one man did 40 yrs ago.
That’s it for 8:00 am. A new day has dawned, a day on which a young black man is going to be killed by an already locally notorious white police officer in the most infamous police shootings of the year, and the diarist just happens to be setting out on a drive along West Florissant Avenue so that he (she? maybe) can come to better understand black people by not calling them niggers and that kind of thing.
NB: Bob McCulloch’s father, a St. Louis city police officer, was killed in the line of duty by a black (?) shooter in 1964, fifty years before Michael Brown. Gone to soldiers, every one, etc.
The next entry, “4 PM,” is one of these holy shit you wouldn’t believe what a funny thing happened on the way to Sesame Street and racial reconciliation kind of deals:
Omfg it was crazy. I dont even know where I was. I ask Q.T. guy for directions but I went wrong way. I just wanted to take drive. I ended up in some apartment complex + asked directions again. Real nice kid in wife beater he had no idea he asked guy in green Shirt + jeans that guy was realy (sic) sweet. Then I heard a weird noise caught my attention this cop was backing up saying I couldn’t hear but they was same kids I almost hit with car. A big one + a Skinny one. The cop tried getting out + the big one hit the door the cop looked pissed + tried opening door again. The big kid hit the door with his gut + the little one punched the mirror. Someth gold fell on the ground….
The diarist continues with a description of the cop shouting at the kids, the big kid waving his arms crazily (“turned around had his arms out with attitude (possibly “attidude;” the penmanship is sloppy) and being told by a female bystander to “lay yo stuipd ass down,” and “dang if that kid didnt start running right at the cop like a foot ball (sic) player. Head down.” Several shots, “omg the blood,” the guy in the green shirt tells the diarist to “get your ass out of here,” the diarist leaves, sees another cop draw his gun but not fire, gets more directions out of the city at the QT, goes the wrong way and needs to get directions yet again, and finally makes it home: “Home now no cable so not sure whats on news.”
The third entry is at 9:00 pm:
Talked to [redacted] without telling him everything. He told me 1st I was nuts taking drive up there and 2nd keep my mouth shut. He’s (sic) prob right no one will believe me anyway.
That’s the only apostrophe I could find in the three entries. The novelist who fabricated it probably got sloppy about the voice of this particular character.
This “diary” sounds like total bullshit. We’re to believe that someone who is still keeping a handwritten diary in 2014 happened to be working on rising above his racism by not calling black people niggers and taking a morning drive through one of their neighborhoods just in time to stumble upon a white cop shooting a black teenager. We’re to believe that this same person, apparently a resident of a nearby municipality, got so easily lost on major thoroughfares in Ferguson that he had to ask for directions no fewer than four times. We’re to believe that one of his buddies back home thought he was crazy to go for a drive through Ferguson, a somewhat rough but racially integrated city with a major industrial and commercial base employing a large number of people of all races and socioeconomic levels.
If Bob McCulloch ends up in federal prison for a few months as a consequence of his grand jury presentment in the Darren Wilson case, I won’t shed a tear for his weaselly ass. He threw his own case. He’s a well-groomed gangland operator and probably a dyed-in-the-wool racist, too. It’s his office that is prosecuting St. Louis County police officer Dawon Gore, a black cop, for felony assault causing hand fractures in the course of using his service baton to subdue a man who was violently lashing out at various people around him, then driving the same violent guy home after he had calmed down and declining to press charges against him. Gore sounds like the kind of cop who might have been able to successfully talk down or bumrush Kajieme Powell without getting Powell or anyone else hurt. Decent people want cops like Dawon Gore on their police forces. Bob McCulloch doesn’t because he’s an indecent man.
There are some really foolish white racists who need to realize that Bob McCulloch and Darren Wilson do not have their backs. Maybe they do as long as there’s a readily available population of black people for them to prey upon, but this is in no way a given. Not all of their targets are going to be black. Move them from a heavily black jurisdiction like St. Louis County to a heavily white one, and in a matter of hours they’ll be cruising to put a bruising on some honky, maybe one who didn’t see it coming because he was too smug in his own white privilege. Just because they’re racists doesn’t mean that other white people are safe around them. Bad people without consciences endanger everyone. They endanger some people more than others, but merely not being in their favorite target demographic is not a reliable safeguard against their abuses. They prey on anyone they dislike or perceive as vulnerable or marginalized. They corrupt other officials by their presence and bad example.
They need to be drummed out of police forces the moment they show their true colors.
I don’t care how white or all-American or wealthy or properly bourgeois or well-connected or law-abiding you think you are. Bad cops are not your friends. It may seem like they are right now, but just wait until one of them turns on you. Better yet, wait until a gang of them turns on you. Your racial or socioeconomic demographics are irrelevant if some armed sworn gang of thugs puts you on their shit list. They cannot be trusted to serve only the dark meat. Some of them usually spare Whitey, but that’s a metastable power dynamic. Your white privilege does not confer blanket immunity against bad cops. Cracker please.
Good grief, Darren Wilson and his supporters have been spreading disinformation for months. They’re liars. If they’ll deliberately tell lies and half-truths and present crucial information out of context and throw a grand jury presentment and apparently fabricate evidence in order to protect a cop from criminal accountability for a homicide in the line of duty, what sorts of lies won’t they tell to get their way in matters falling short of homicide? On top of that, Wilson has publicly said that he has a “clean conscience” over the shooting. He’s either lying about this or a psychopath. He fucking killed a man. Either way, you’d be out of your mind to want a man of his character and background patrolling your neighborhood armed and under color of authority.
Witness #40 is just one of the latest pieces of a pastiche of official and quasiofficial disinformation surrounding the shooting of Michael Brown and the police suppression of the protests. It follows unsubstantiated claims by the police that “agitators” threw Molotov cocktails, provably false claims by the police on a number of occasions that they had not fired tear gas, multiple police attacks on reporters, efforts to obscure the identities of both Wilson and riot control officers responding to the protests, a false claim that a photograph of a thuggish black teenager from Oregon was actually one of Michael Brown, dubious claims that Brown had shoved a convenience store clerk in the course of stealing a pack of cigars (the implication being that his involvement in a robbery earlier that day absolved Wilson of guilt for killing him), a wildly false claim that Wilson had suffered an orbital fracture in the course of a tussle with Brown, and an anonymous call to a radio talk show from an unvetted alleged friend of Wilson’s calling herself “Josie.”
Meanwhile, the first prominent witness to come forward on Brown’s side, Dorian Johnson, went on the record from the start. I find him a bit too slick to be believable, but regardless, there’s at least no question as to who he is. In the days after Dorian Johnson came forward, much of his story was corroborated on the record by two much more credible eyewitnesses, Piaget Crenshaw and Michael Brady. I found Brady compellingly credible: he wasn’t well-spoken and his grammar was a mess, but he had a genuine, unforced humility and guilelessness the likes of which I’ve almost never seen on television.
We know who Johnson, Crenshaw, and Brady are, but who the fuck is “Josie?” I wonder if she isn’t Darren Wilson’s colleague turned roommate turned wife Barbara Spradling. Barring a credible leak from Dana Loesch’s radio staff or a match to a known voice sample, we have no goddamn idea who she is. Never mind, though, for a large cohort of gullible authoritarians, the secondhand statement of one unidentified, and likely pseudonymous, white chick claiming to be a friend of Officer Wilson’s is worth more than the on-the-record, videotaped statements of three black witnesses about what they saw firsthand at the scene of the shooting.
If black lives don’t matter, black testimony probably doesn’t matter, either. Ferguson is bringing out of the woodwork a cohort of paranoid, authoritarian white racists who are willing to endanger public safety and the rule of law for the entire country on the assumption that bad cops will keep the black man down. They need to be stopped. As Martin Niemoller might have said, first their came for the Negroes, and I said nothing because I was not a Negro. One does not simply assume that Whitey will not be next.
If nothing else, Witness #40 is right about one thing: no progress will be made until we stop thinking of black people as niggers and start thinking of them as people.