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Cory Booker wrote a column about Rodney King in 1992. It's a perfect response to Ferguson

Libby Nelson is Vox's policy editor, leading coverage of how government action and inaction shape American life. Libby has more than a decade of policy journalism experience, including at Inside Higher Ed and Politico. She joined Vox in 2014.

"How can I write when I have lost control of my emotions?" That's how Cory Booker began a column as a master's degree student at Stanford, enraged and saddened but not surprised when a jury delivered a "not guilty" verdict in the beating of Rodney King.

Cory Booker Stanford Daily column

(Cory Booker via Twitter)

Booker's refrain was "not guilty… not shocked." Booker, now a senator from New Jersey, tweeted the column Tuesday as a way of relating to outrage over the Ferguson decision, and it's still sadly resonant more than 20 years later:

Not Guilty… Not Shocked.

I’m a black man. I am 6 feet 3 inches tall and 230 pounds, just like King. Do I scare you? Am I a threat? Does your fear justify your actions? Twelve people believed it did.

Black male: Guilty until proven innocent.

Reactions to my kind are justified. Scrutiny is justified. Surveillance is justified. Search is justified. Fifty-six blows…Justified.

Justice? Dear God…

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