It was with mixed feelings that I noted the arrest in Baltimore yesterday of a noisy activist, 21-year old Darius Kwame Rosebrough who goes by the stage/street name Kwame Rose. He is charged with second-degree assault, disorderly conduct and resisting or interfering with an arrest. Police say Rosebrough kicked an officer in the face.
During my own televised confrontations with Mr. Rose, he seemed to be both sincerely concerned about alleged police misconduct and totally into getting as much attention for himself as he possibly could, timing his outbursts for whenever the camera went live.
Still, there was an aspect of nobility to the kid, even as he made a fool of himself. He was defiant, angry, but more or less sincere.
At one point he said on camera, "We burn shit because we don't own shit."
He was searching for purpose and basking in the attention of the media, and I thought at the time that he would either mature and moderate into the next generation of civic leader or just become another trouble-maker who ends up dead or in jail.
As it is on the fate of the cops charged in the death in Baltimore of Freddie Gray, when it comes to Kwame Rose, the jury is still out.