Here is the truth: The abbreviated and not at all easy life of Freddie Gray was, to some extent, shaped by Gray's choices. He was an American and an adult with at least some of the attendant free will that people assume comes with either status.
But it is also a life altered and quite likely distorted by the net effects of where and how the wealthy country into which he was born and its voters have decided to distribute its resources. Freddie Gray was an American failed more often by his country than served by it. And yet again this week, after a mistrial was declared in the first of six cases against police officers in whose custody Gray died, only the details of his death have become the subject of any real and sustained public discussion.