Hung jury may lead to hanging heads

freddie_gray_screenshot_smThe first to be tried in the untimely and tragic death of Mr. Freddie Gray, Baltimore police officer William Porter, leaves the courtroom and dumfounds some.  The mistrial is being described as a miscarriage of justice, a missed opportunity and even a misunderstanding.  There are those who believe that while it is unfortunate, no crime was committed.  There are others who are scratching their heads, wondering, “What just happened?”  Or maybe, they are shaking their heads saying, “Is this really happening?”

It is hard to accept that Gray died while in police custody and after committing no punishable offense.  Yet, Officer Porter was unable to be charged with any crime though clearly one occurred.  A young man lost his life and though impossible, many are looking for an even exchange.

With stories like Mr. Gray’s, it is easy to become discouraged and to no longer believe in the goodness of people and the power of the law.  Protesters and television viewers across America are waiting to see what will happen next.  But, no matter what happens, we can not hang our heads or hide them in the sand.

Despair must not win.  Sadness cannot overtake us.  We must lift our hands and voices while lifting the standard of our shared humanity, where we can look into the face of any human being and see ourselves.  We must keep talking, keep marching, keep voting, keep singing, keep preaching and keep praying until the hanging head of one Freddie Gray, handcuffed and feet scraping the concrete while being placed into a van lifts the heads of us all to see what was done to him.

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