On MSNBC with Jose Diaz-Balart last night, Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY) insisted that the murder of two NYPD policemen had nothing to do with the protest movements that arose following the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner. Said Meeks:
If you listen to everybody who was either a coordinator and to the vast majority of the people who were demonstrating, if you listen to the Brown family, you will see and hear that everyone was talking about nonviolence and anybody who was violent was against the movement for justice they were calling for.
No one that I heard was talking about violence towards police officers. Those that this act, which is an isolated act, I don’t think was connected at all to the individuals who just simply want the justice system to work.
Meeks’ statements are categorically false.
Many of the coordinators of the demonstrations have unequivocally advocated for violence against police, as has been assiduously monitored and recorded by thousands of camera-wielding participants and media.
The forty or so buildings which were torched in Ferguson by hundreds to thousands of rioters make his “vast majority” statement improbable (the use of the phrase “vast majority” to alleviate a group’s responsibility for violence is a well-worn, intentionally vague and undefinable descriptor).
And Michael Brown’s stepfather supported the precise opposite of what Rep. Meeks claims he supported. He urged Ferguson protesters to “burn this b**** down”; supporters honored the request.