The Morning's Stories: Two Angles, One Funeral
First, when we said it was going to rain yesterday, we kind of lied. We got some bad intel. The showers are now not expected until tomorrow. We also should probably apologize to Seattlest for the crack we made about them and rain. This season, we have twice the waterfall as our northern friends so we'll just shut up about all that.
While the aftermath of the Devin Brown shooting is interesting all on its own, today we're most interested in how our two major local papers covered his funeral. Dana Bartholomew's piece for The Daily News reads oddly to us. The story quickly becomes about "the African-American community" responding to the situation which just seems weird as the reaction of the people in South Los Angeles has been far from unified. As Solomon Moore notes in his Los Angeles Times article (which we will get to soon), people in the community are "coming together" but not all with the same agenda or outlook. It also is strange to us that with all the spectacle surrounding the funeral, Bartholomew considers clothing as newsworthy. We can hear the unwritten "tsk tsk" when she (he?) writes "Some came dressed for a funeral; others wore T-shirts emblazoned with the boy's smiling face."
Haven't South LA funerals (not to mention other cities across the country) for young people featured people wearing silk-screened R.I.P tees for at least 20 years?
The Los Angeles Times piece is much more nuanced. Moore notes that this memorial service was the coming together of "Muslims and Christians and Jews, Bloods and Crips" and he finds more newsworthy than the common garb inside the church, the antics outside the building. The Black Riders Liberation Army performed military drills while wearing gas masks and a truck came pulling a trailer with a billboard that read "The Black American Slave Holocaust". Now that seems like true spectacle to us.
Diff'rent strokes for diff'rent papers, we guess.