Near Ferguson, Did Someone Spray Paint a 'Mockingjay' Quote on an Archway? — REPORT
Monday night, after a grand jury declined to indict officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of unarmed teenager Michael Brown, someone on my Twitter timeline made a reference to the state of unrest in Ferguson, comparing the images of distressed, outraged citizens and a militarized police presence to a scene from a movie. And there does seem to be a relationship between art and life in the midst of the Ferguson unrest. According to Wisconsin news site Madison.com, someone who was presumably a protestor allegedly spray painted a gate with a Hunger Games slogan in the Shaw neighborhood of St. Louis, writing, "If we burn, you burn with us." That statement is a line from Mockingjay, Part 1 in which Katniss stands up against President Snow while viewers in the Capitol stand by, witnessing her unyielding defiance.
Below are images of the supposed archway. It's unconfirmed if the photos have been altered, but they are food for thought, nonetheless. The vandalism supposedly happened before the jury made its decision, and was, according to the Daily Mail, promptly painted over.The events unfolding in Ferguson feel absolutely surreal, regardless of the sad fact that these types of protests, which stem from racially-charged shootings, have become increasingly routine. The most notable case before Brown was the shooting of Trayvon Martin and the subsequent backlash upon the acquittal of Martin's shooter George Zimmerman. Unfortunately and as statistics show, police shooting of unarmed black men is nothing new, and neither is the concept of art imitating life, and vice versa.
There are countless differences between the imaginary heroine Katniss and the plight of fictional Panem and the numerous faces of the very real black men like Michael Brown, and I feel like Ferguson is way too serious to compare to a film. However, these photos of Ferguson juxtaposed with Mockingjay stills give me chills because they're so eerily similar and almost blur the lines between what's fake and what's real, and looking at the side-by-side images makes me feel the same way I felt while watching the events unfold on TV after the grand jury announcement — fearful, confused and helpless, which are all emotions that are easy to identify, whether on film or in real life, but still utterly difficult to process.