Why you should care
Carlos Watson informs you on what’s new and next every Friday morning on CNN’s New Day.
Over the past couple of weeks, dozens of prominent civil rights activists have flown to Ferguson, Missouri, where a police officer killed 18-year-old Michael Brown on Aug. 9. Many have, rightly, pointed out that police violence against black citizens is a motif that recurs throughout American history. But a crisis like this is also a good time to look ahead at a new generation of civil rights leaders. They may not be in the mold of traditional leaders like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. or the Rev. Jesse Jackson, yet they’re leading on justice and equal opportunity, and their work could help us achieve a more perfect union. Meet the Ferguson Four.
In Ferguson, Missouri, where Michael Brown lived and sadly died, blacks make up 65 percent of the local population. But blacks account for 80 percent of traffic stops, according to the Missouri attorney general. They were twice as likely as whites to be arrested in these stops, even though police found contraband on blacks 22 percent of the time, versus 34 percent for area whites. Is it paranoia if they really are out to get you?