How the 1967 Kerner Report and Ferguson Relate
By Kim Smith
Aggie Press Guest Contributor
In 1967, President Lyndon Johnson charged the Kerner Commission, also known as the National Advisory on Civil Disorders, to examine the cause of the riots of the 1960s. What the authors discovered, among other findings, was that the news media did a good job of covering what happened during the riots, but not such a good job of explaining to the American public why the riots occurred.
The authors researched the poverty in the inner city, the lack of basic necessities, the lack of jobs and education, the rise in single-parent families, lack of police protection, absentee landlords who raised the rent but didn’t repair crumbling apartment complexes, and political power structures that neglected these communities. The authors concluded that news media did not report on these problems that festered over decades, and one day these issues boiled over into the riots that occurred in Detroit, Newark, N.J., and later in Washington, D.C., and Greensboro, N.C.
Fast forward to Nov. 24, 2014. Read more