Michael Brown Sr. lies stock-still on his back on the floor of an art studio in St. Louis as an artist layers papier-mache on his arms, chest, and torso. Brown Sr. is a stand-in, the model for a life-size replica that St. Louis artist Dail Chambers is creating to represent Michael Brown Jr. — his deceased son. In the days and weeks that followed, other artists added their own interpretations to the cast, and community leaders, family, friends, and activists affixed messages of remembrance, of hope, as well as photos and tributes to Brown Jr. “Although everybody else has left since your death, we are still here fighting,” one 16-year-old girl wrote. The final exhibit, called “As I See You,” will be part of a memorial Aug. 9–11 for Brown Jr., five years after a police officer took the 18-year-old’s life in Ferguson, Missouri.
By Ryan J. Reilly and Mariah Stewart for The Huffington Post - ST. LOUIS -- A sweeping proposed agreement between the Justice Department and Ferguson, Missouri, would bring big changes to way the city’s police department and municipal court have operated, in an attempt to end the unconstitutional practices that had severely damaged the relationship between officers and members of the community. If adopted, the agreement would mandate extensive officer training; make several revisions to the municipal code to eliminate statutes that police used to abuse the city’s most vulnerable residents...
By Pamela Merritt for Reproaction - It was through a series of tweets sent by a friend who lives in Ferguson that I learned a young man had been shot and killed by a police officer. Additional tweets relayed the shock of people who gathered at the scene and looked on in horror as Michael Brown lay dead in the street for hours. What followed is best understood as the Ferguson Uprising, an almost unbearable public display of grief, anger, frustration, and disgust that spilled out into the streets to confront an over-the-top militarized police force and the callous disregard of a legal system as unfamiliar with justice as it is with accountability. It felt as if the killing of Michael Brown on August 9, 2014, was the last straw, as if we hit the breaking point and collectively decided to make our stand for justice. Protests broke out all over the nation, as communities rose up and declared Black lives matter.
By Staff for Popular Resistance - Since the killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson one year ago the #BlackLivesMatter movement has swept the nation. Tomorrow, there will protests in many parts of the country to remember his death and the uprising that has followed. Michael Brown was not the first person to be killed by police, this is a long, historic reality of US policing of black and brown communities, nor was his death the first to be protested. Popular Resistance has reported on protests against police violence throughout its existence and in our earlier incarnation as the Occupation of Washington, DC at Freedom Plaza. Historically, riots in urban areas have often been ignited by police violence. Something is different now, the #BlackLivesMatter movement has created an organized revolt against police violence. It is developing a broad base in communities of color with many Caucasin communities participating, standing with #BlackLivesMatter leaders. Postive changes have been made in the last year and we expect escalation of the #BlackLivesMatter over the next year and will do all we can to support it.
Interview with Kayla Reed and Tef Poe by Shenequa Golding - White supremacy on any level does not shock me. I’m very aware of how it operates and how it manifests in the systems that oppress us, so in the space, as far as The New Yorker, I’m disappointed but I’ve come to expect that some of the national media outlets do things to agitate spaces. Am I shocked? No. But my response is we knew Darren Wilson was racist the moment he killed Mike Brown. Stood over his body and had to negotiate with his grandmother to put a sheet over him. We knew the day he got assaulted and his cheek looked rosey red to me. We knew he got a million dollars and he’s living apparently on the outskirts of St. Louis and is concerned about a lawsuit and doesn’t see the value that someone lost their child. I think he is living proof of why we continue to be in this struggle and why we continue to fight but I have no expectations his mind will be liberated from the hatred that he encompasses.
By Ferguson Action Council - It has been almost one year since the murder of Michael Brown, Jr. and the uprising that followed. Our movement has grown immensely and here in Ferguson and St. Louis, we continue to fight for all those who have been lost. From August 7-10th, we will stand together, united in purpose, as we uphold our commitment to this movement for Black Lives. We invite you to join us in St. Louis for the Anniversary Weekend. If you can’t join us, we ask that you plan solidarity actions in your own communities. We ask that groups honor Michael Brown Jr by participating in a four and a half minute National Moment of Silence on Sunday, August 9th at 11:55AM CST.
The national protests catalyzed by the killing of Mike Brown in Ferguson last August continue even as many (including the mainstream media) have moved on. Some critics have suggested that the uprisings/rebellions are leaderless, lack concretedemands and/or are without clear strategy. Each of these critiques is easily refuted so I won’t concern myself with them here. In Chicago, many have used the energy and opening created by these ongoing protests to re-animate existing long-term anti-police violence campaigns. On Saturday afternoon, hundreds of people gathered at the Chicago Temple to show our love for police torture survivors on the day after Jon Burge was released from house arrest.
Six months after unarmed teenager Michael Brown was killed by Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson, the tensions between police and demonstrators have not eased, as seven protesters (including one 14-year-old) were arrested Monday night. "They tried to say I hit them with my cell phone holder. I am a pacifist. I have never hit anyone in my whole life," said Heather De Mian, 44, who was livestreaming the demonstration and was arrested and charged with third-degree assault and failure to obey. After a candlelight vigil on Canfield Drive to mark six months since the shooting, several activists moved toward the nearby police station to demonstrate.
A bar complaint against St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch and Assistant Prosecuting Attorneys Kathi Alizadeh and Sheila Whirley has been filed regarding the handling of the Ferguson grand jury. Attorney and former judge James R. Dowd and attorney Robert Ramsey reviewed the grand jury transcript – including evidence, witness interviews and testimony – before a group of seven citizens and attorneys – led by Christi Griffin, founder of the Ethics Project – filed an 11-page complaint with the Office of the Chief Disciplinary Counsel in Jefferson City, Missouri. Griffin has said initial reports from the Ferguson police chief that Darren Wilson did not know Michael Brown was suspected in an earlier convenience store robbery were changed in testimony before the grand jury, and she believes that represents perjury.
Activists are putting some hope in Washington: the Department of Justice hasopened separate civil rights probes into the Ferguson police force and Garner’s death. In Ferguson, voter-registration drives are under way ahead of April’s city council elections. And the struggle has spread. On Dec. 3, after protesting the Garner grand jury decision at the federal courthouse in downtown St. Louis, Elzie glanced down at her phone. It was lighting up with tweets and texts tracking the night’s arrests, as well as updates from the demonstrations in New York. Like many in Ferguson, she was heading there the next day to join them.
Ferguson prosecutor Bob McCulloch admitted that he presented evidence he knew to be false to the grand jury considering charges against Darren Wilson. In an interview with radio station KTRS on Friday, McCulloch said that he decided to present witnesses that were “clearly not telling the truth” to the grand jury. Specifically, McCulloch acknowledged he permitted a woman who “clearly wasn’t present when this occurred” to testify as an eyewitness to the grand jury for several hours. The woman, Sandra McElroy, testified that Michael Brown charged at Wilson “like a football player, head down,” supporting Wilson’s claim that he killed Brown in self-defense. McElroy, according to a detailed investigation by The Smoking Gun, suffers from bipolar disorder but is not receiving treatment and has a history of making racist remarks.
Over 50 thousand demonstrators marched from Washington Square Park, uptown through the heart of the holiday shopping district at Herald Square and then downtown to a rally and speak out at one police plaza. The march was lead by led by family members of those who have lost loved ones to police murder – including family members of Mike Brown, Jordan Davis, Shantel Davis, Sean Bell, Emmitt Till, Alberta Spruill, Ramarley Graham, and Kimani Gray. Local organizers stressed that this movement is growing out of the historical moment brought on by the Mike Brown case in and the “incredible bravery” of organizers and protesters in Ferguson, MO who have been in the streets, often facing down a paramilitary police force, for over 100 days and counting.
Since their sons’ deaths, the mothers had collectively been to hundreds of vigils. They’d made buttons and T-shirts with their sons’ faces. They’d formed nonprofit groups in their sons’ names: Mothers Against Police Brutality, Mothers on the Move, Mothers of Never Again. One of the cases was turned into a movie. Some of the moms had gone to an “empowerment retreat” hosted by the mother of Trayvon Martin, killed in Florida by a neighborhood watch volunteer. Time after time, there would be moments of attention, but then their stories got buried under different news and the mothers disappeared again. Now they were in Washington and hopeful once again. Every day across the country, protesters were holding rallies and marches and die-ins — there was a big march scheduled for Saturday in Washington — in response to the lack of indictments in the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner.
Alright y’all. I’d like to clear a few things up. This is a general address to the long list of misconceptions and inconsistencies and abuses of power that exist surrounding the killing of Mike Brown. I have researched these points and provided sources in case you wish to do some reading of your own. -The most common misconception I’m hearing is that Mike Brown was significantly larger than Officer Wilson. This is incorrect. On page 198 of the official grand jury transcript, you can see that Officer Wilson testifies he is 6 ft 4 and weighs 210 lbs, the same size as Mike Brown. Mike Brown was NOT stopped because he was a suspect in crime. He and his friend Dorian Johnson were stopped for jaywalking, as Darren Wilson testifies to on page 208 of his grand jury testimony. -Mike Brown WAS fleeing from Officer Wilson when he was fatally shot. Wilson confirms this on page 281 of his grand jury testimony.