As an older white man I know I cannot truly appreciate the feelings of the African-American people in Ferguson, Missouri. And I cannot appreciate the feelings of Americans across the nation who believe that the Grand Jury decision was wrong. Still, my heart goes out to Michael Brown’s parents, family and friends. They are also victims and deserve our compassion. I am sorry for your loss.

When we believe injustice has been done, we must try to correct it by protesting against it. But those who protest violently against it by burning cars and looting the businesses of innocent citizens are making a mistake. They think they are calling attention to the injustice. But all they are doing is distracting us from one injustice by creating other injustices. Rioting is a distraction because it makes the first injustice a secondary issue. It steals the attention from the original issue.

If our house is on fire, we call the fire department. When the fire department arrives, do they light more fires? Of course not! They use water to put out the flames. Only after the flames are extinguished can the investigation determine the cause of the fire.

In the aftermath of Michael Brown’s tragedy we need to extinguish the flames of hatred and violence with the waters of peace and love for our fellow man. We must view Michael Brown’s tragedy objectively and learn how to prevent similar future occurrences from happening. We must change our view of the world and the people in it by realizing we are all God’s children. We must show love and compassion, not just when tragedy strikes, but every day, in the attitudes we express as we live our lives. Everyone must do this, regardless of color, religion or national origins.

May God shower us with His love and show us the way to resolve this issue to the satisfaction of all the people who live in the United States of America.

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