Dallas, police lives are mourned but rage continues to boil over

Dallas—Many of the speeches were eerily the same. The speakers, the thoughts, the frustration and anger — all the same. But what was different at a meeting of the Next Generation Action Network — the lead group that sponsored Thursday’s night Black Lives Matter rally in Dallas — was that five police officers had died and seven were woundedprotecting many of the people in the crowd Sunday night at Friendship West Baptist Church in southern Dallas.
“I ain’t anti-police,” said Fredrick Douglass Haynes, the pastor at Friendship West. “It’s about a system that needs to be corrected.”
While most speakers expressed regret and condolences for the officers who had lost their lives or were wounded, many felt that such violence was inevitable. And while they condemned the alleged shooter Micah Johnson, they also said he was Exhibit A of the problem. “Micah, God rest his soul, no excuse. It’s horrible, but he’s homegrown,” Haynes said. “You reap what you sow when you’re the most violent nation on the earth.”
Echoed Dominique Alexander, the head of NGAN: “We should look also at what got him there, and address the issues. What got him there is the failure of our government to serve the veterans,” he said. “They train them to be vicious and then throw them out on our streets.” Johnson, 25, served a tour in Afghanistan before being honorably discharged from the Army. Before an audience of nearly 1,000 mostly African Americans, the group held two discussions. The first looked at policy changes and things everyone can do to make things better.—Agencies

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