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Ferguson is a revolutionary’s dream

Chicago Police don’t play.

There are too many instances of Chicagoans getting their heads cracked because they didn’t follow a police order.

In fact, in poor communities, the lucrative settlements the city has to pay out because of police abuse have become an unofficial lottery.

But in Ferguson, Missouri, last week, anger over a grand jury decision not to indict Officer Darren Wilson for the fatal shooting of unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown exploded into burning and looting.

On Monday, President Barack Obama met with officials and activists to talk about Ferguson. The White House also announced a task force to look at policing and proposed a $263 million investment in body-worn cameras for police officers.

Across the country, young people — many of whom are not black and do not live in impoverished neighborhoods — are protesting the decision not to indict.

But if the nation doesn’t eliminate the distrust, disrespect and despair that has come to represent the criminal justice system, the next Ferguson is just around the corner.

Richard Grant Newburger, 57, who is associated with “The Stop Mass Incarceration Network” and “The Revolution Club of Chicago,” said he became a revolutionary at an early age. “There was a whole new resurgence of communism that was independent, and I became part of that. I have worked in the ghettos of the country for more than 30 years now. Life has deteriorated for black people over those decades,” he said.

Last week, Newburger, a Caucasian, was arrested during a street demonstration at the intersection of State and Jackson. The location has become an informal gathering place for protesters.

Newburger claims a police bicycle struck him as he walked into the intersection alongside a couple of other protesters, carrying a banner that read: “Justice for Mike Brown.”

“I went flying and hit the ground. It hit me from the back or the side and knocked me down. The arrest followed,” he said.

But according to police, Newburger pushed an officer on a bicycle and sat down in the street and refused to comply with the officer’s direction.

Newburger was charged with aggravated battery to a police officer, a felony, and

was released on his own recognizance. He

is scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday.

“Of the 15-20 protests in Chicago following the Ferguson decision, which involved hundreds if not thousands of participants, there were only three arrests,” said a spokesman for the Chicago Police Department in an email.

Obviously, agitators expect to get arrested. In fact, Newburger said he has been arrested 19 times while participating in protests across the country.

Still, he was surprised that Chicago Police charged him with a felony.

“This is my only felony ever. Back in the early ’80s, I participated in civil disobedience at an Army base and even then I was only charged with a federal misdemeanor. I think Chicago Police are trying to send a message that you dare not stand up,” Newburger said.

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