BBC Newsnight spoke with Cornel West about the protests in Ferguson demanding justice for Michael Brown, where he said the American justice system fails young black people and criticized Obama’s response to the unrest:
"Think about the hypocrisy here. Just recently the President just said ‘oh we tortured some folks’ but they were real patriots, but they were dealing with anguish and therefore, we let them free. But here, we got young people upset. Why? Because they rightly see a murder taking place. But he’s got to be the man of law and order. It’s not law and order when it comes to torture. Just like it’s not law and order when it comes to Israelis committing war crimes in Gaza but he’s law and order now when it comes to poor black people. You say, will wait a minute. The hypocrisy is overwhelming there. Spare me."
West also suggested that black communities need local, grassroots movements and not black leaders focused on "market branding … photo opportunities."