All eyes were on Ferguson, Missouri this week, where a surge of protests emerged in the wake of the shooting death of unarmed African-American teenager Michael Brown. Reported instances of looting and police brutality have rocked this Missouri suburb and raised larger concerns about the relationship between police forces and the citizens they're charged to protect.
As new details emerge, members of the msnbc.com community have been actively tackling issues of racial politics and police culture in America, among others. Take a look at some of the standout comments of the week:
"The Ferguson police (and more broadly, nationwide) have completely lost credibility when it comes to their actions when policing minorities, specifically African-Americans. They are rapidly losing the "consent of the governed."'
… imagine walking down the street in a tank, shorts, and flip flops and a police officer deems you a thug. No matter what you say, no matter your education, no matter how much you love your family, no matter that you are to start your higher education in just two days, someone, some group, has deemed you a threat ... The question then must be asked, who is the problem?'
"I'm American Indian and this type of violence exists in western Oklahoma. Two young American Indian men have been shot and killed by the Clinton, OK police department ... is there ever justice."'
"We had tens of thousands of people protesting for weeks (and some rioting, breaking windows and cars with rocks and molotov cocktails) in the city of Montreal and I didn't see that much usage of force against these people. And even that relatively light use in the light of the huge crowds in a dense urban environment got criticized."'
"There is also no excuse for arresting news media without cause, demanding all videos be turned off, not conducting a transparent murder investigation, etc. I have had a career in law enforcement and can not believe what I am seeing..."'
"What's going on here is a two way street. Cops shouldn't shoot and kill innocent people regardless of color. Citizens shouldn't rob and damage businesses owned by innocent people to protest."'
"As a 45 year old white male and 25 year Missouri resident, I have seen far too much ignorance in this state. I am not surprised in the least to be witnessing these events. The culture here is far more extreme than people are seeing here."'
"A serious violation of American rights has taken place in Ferguson, MO. This is not about race, it is about the unjustified imposition of martial law, denial of constitutional rights, and a lack of ability to stop law enforcement who has run amuck."'
"I'm thinking that 100% of the registered voters in that little village need to take to the polls in November. That's the only way this situation will get under control."'