I was watching twitter last night in awe. The Mister and I were following the #Ferguson, I was in shock and awe of what I was witnessing.
There were many live feeds going on, where I was able to watch live the insanity that was unfolding.
A peaceful protest –
There were racial slurs being yelled, unfortunately they were being yelled by the police. I saw people people of all ages sitting cross legged chanting “Hands up, Don’t shoot” At one point I saw a young man toss a plastic water bottle in the general direction of the police. No one was hit, and it was not threatening. However that is when the police began to move in on the protesters and the Media.
What happened next-
Once the water bottle was tossed, the police came over the loudspeaker and stated “This is no longer a peaceful protest, leave or be arrested” At which time they opened fire on the crowd with rubber bullets and Tear Gas. From the time that they were ordered to leave, it was no longer than 1 minute before they police opened fire.
— Cassidy Moody (@CassFM) August 14, 2014
All hell broke loose-
The police, shut out the media, arresting several high profile journalists. Some were arrested after being assaulted by police, most notably two journalists that were arrested while sitting in a McDonalds charging their phones and regrouping.
— Michael Calhoun (@michaelcalhoun) August 14, 2014
I witnessed journalists running for their lives alongside the protesters, jumping fences, hiding behind cars in neighborhoods that were completely peaceful. No one was attacking the police. The police made a decision to show off their military style force and show up fully locked and loaded. According to some former military personnel the police were wearing more gear than is regulation to wear into a full combat zone, such as Iraq or Afghanistan.
The gentleman on the left has more personal body armor and weaponry than I did while invading Iraq. pic.twitter.com/5u6TxyIbkk
— Brandon Friedman (@BFriedmanDC) August 14, 2014
The police were walking and driving the protesters backwards, and boxing them in via side streets. They were unleashing a barrage of tear gas that eventually lead to protesters being injured as well as starting fires in the neighborhood.
Last night the police informed the people that were recording the events as they unfolded were to shut their cameras down or they would be arrested. Police also ordered news media to be removed from the scene. A clear constitutional violation of the 1st amendment. The police chief also requested that the protests end around dusk, it appeared that as night fell police made the decision to go on the immediate offense. There was no official curfew in place and the police chief said that it was NOT a curfew, just a safety suggestion.
Why is this even happening?
I think that it is very important to remember why all of this is even happening. A young man named Mike Brown was killed by police on Sunday. This young man was unarmed and according to an eyewitness “Shot like an animal” Now I do not even want to remotely proclaim that I know the events that lead up to this tragedy. I was no there and I was certainly not an eyewitness.
After this child was killed the people of Ferguson, MO wanted answers. Answers that the elected officials, and police were not willing to give. Mainly the names of the officers involved. Once it was determined that the name of the officer(s) involved were not going to be released and that the officers had not been placed on administrative leave the people took to the streets.
Unfortunately, there was one night which involved looting and some destruction of a building. It has been said by civil leaders in the community that those were not the acts of concerned citizens but by a minority of individuals that they do not represent the majority of the people wanting answers.
The people just want to know that the police are not above the law in these situations. It does not help that the city of 20,000 people whom are mostly african american are completely underrepresented in the police force as well as the district attorney’s office.
As of right now the FBI send out a press release stating that they have relieved all of the St. Louis County police and are now taking over the situation. So lets’ hope that this will calm some of the tensions that are running so high right now, and it will prevent anymore police brutality in the coming days.