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Ebony & ivory

Ferguson’s on fire — literally and figuratively.

A few days ago most of us would have asked, “Where’s Ferguson?” But that was before this suburb of St. Louis, Mo., was torn apart by the shooting death of Michael Brown. And as you have been reminded, this is 18-year old Michael Brown — unarmed Michael Brown, black Michael Brown.

Does that sound like I’m taking sides about an incident that nobody except one Ferguson policeman really knows about?

I’m not.

All those descriptions are true. Michael Brown was 18, unarmed, black and now he’s dead. Did he provoke or threaten that officer? Perhaps we’ll never know. But one thing we do know is that a lot of people in Ferguson — besides that cop — have been making a lot of bad decisions: the stupidity of the looters, the over-responsiveness of the police confronting peaceful demonstrators, the demonstrators who weren’t peaceful, the heavily armed law men who forcibly shut down media.

Do we have to continue these confrontations between police and minorities?

“People, can we all just get along?”

Where did I hear that?

I’m Pat McMahon.