John Lewis, the Democratic congressman from Georgia and civil rights icon, called on President Barack Obama to declare martial law in Ferguson, Missouri, on Thursday as a necessary response to the blunders of local police. Lewis says the police have responded to largely peaceful protests over the slaying of an unarmed black teenager, Michael Brown, with excessive force reminiscent of the 1960s.
“My own feeling is right now is that President Obama should use the authority of his office to declare martial law, federalize the Missouri National Guard to protect people as they protest," Lewis said during an interview on MSNBC. "People should come together—reasonable elected officials, community leaders—and address what is happening there. If you fail to act, the fires of frustration and discontent will continue to burn, not only in Ferguson, Missouri, but all across America.”
Actually, Rep Lewis is wrong. Martial Law is not needed…if Lewis is correct that the protesters are 100% right and Law Enforcement is 100% wrong, then the citizenry need to be protected from the government. This does not require martial law (which, by rights, would need to be declared by the governor, not the President). If Lewis is right in his assertions, President Obama should simply deploy Active Duty military from Fort Leonard Wood to protect the citizenry from the government.
Please note that I caveat the above by saying “if Lewis is correct that…”
I don’t know “ground truth” about what is going on there…only what is being reported on the news. So I dare not draw any conclusions from the limited facts available.