Days after Michael Brown’s death, Ferguson looks like a war zone

A vigil held for Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager gunned down by Ferguson, Mo., police on Saturday in disputed circumstances, turned into what the media described as a riot on Monday evening.

But while national coverage has focused on the indisputably counterproductive violence and destruction committed by Ferguson residents during a moment of anguish, videos and photos taken from the scene show local police aggravating the situation as well.

Years of tension have reached a boiling point

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stereoculturesociety:

CultureHISTORY: The Ferguson Protests - #NMOS14

In light of Mike Brown’s murder, and the police occupation of Ferguson, something extraordinary is happening. With the help of #BlackTwitter, social media, the spotlight of national attention and the impassioned citizens of Ferguson, a protest movement is taking shape and it is important to bear witness.

First there was the #IfTheyGunnedMeDown thread which was reported in the NY Times & LA Times, the #DontShoot thread of photos (some above), and tomorrow a National Moment of Silence across the country for the victims of police brutality.  

Thursday, August 14th#NMOS14 - 4:00P (PT) / 6:00P (CT) / 7:00P (ET). Check cities/location here.

The issue of police brutality against communities of color is a decades-old problem. But with new technology, everyone has access to more information and these cases are getting more attention. Plus, in the last four weeks, four unarmed black men have been killed by policemen across the country. Along with Mike Brown in St. Louis, Eric Garner in New York, John Crawford in Dayton, OH and Ezell Ford in L.A. Yes, it’s time for a movement.

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caseybruce:

Black and unarmed.

Remember the names of unarmed Black men who were killed by police or vigilantes. This is only a short list, please reply with other names so we may remember these men.

Trayvon Martin.

The fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman took place on the night of February 26, 2012, in Sanford, Florida.  Martin was a 17-year-old African American high school student. He was unarmed and headed home after buying skittles and sweet tea from a gas station close to his home. George Zimmerman, a 28-year-old multi-racial Hispanic American was the neighborhood watch coordinator for the gated community where Martin was temporarily staying and where the shooting took place. Zimmerman, against the instructions of the Emergency dispatcher pursued Martin on foot calling him “the suspect.” When the case garnered international attention sparking protests all over the world, the state of Florida filled charges against him 46 days after Martin’s death. Zimmerman was tried for second-degree murder and manslaughterand found not guilty on Saturday, July 13, 2013.

Ervin Jefferson

The 18-year-old was shot and killed by two security guards — also African American — outside his Atlanta home on Saturday, March 24, 2012. His mother says that he was unarmed and trying to protect his sister from a crowd that was threatening her.

Amadou Diallo

22-year-old Amadou Ahmed Diallo, a Guinnea-Bissau immigrant, was killed when four white New York police officers in plain clothes fired 41 shots at him, 19 of which hit his body. The officers said they thought Diallo was reaching for a gun when they shot him in the doorway of his apartment. Turns out it was his wallet. During the trial, the officers admitted that they never considered the situation (four strangers in an unmarked car with guns approaching a guy on his stoop at night) from Diallo’s point of view. They were acquitted of all charges

 Patrick Dorismond

The 26-year-old father of two young girls was shot to death in 2000 during a confrontation with undercover police officers who asked him where they could purchase drugs. An officer claimed thatDorismond — who was unarmed — grabbed his gun and caused his own death. But the incident made many wonder whether the recent acquittal of the officers in the Amadou Diallo case sent a signal that the police had a license to kill without consequence

Ousmane Zongo

In 2003 Officer Bryan A. Conroy confronted and killed Zongo in New York City during a raid on a counterfeit-CD ring with which Zongo had no involvement. Relatives of the 43-year-old man from Burkina Faso settled a lawsuit against the city for $3 million. The judge in the trial of the officer who shot him (and was convicted of criminally negligent homicide but did not serve jail time) said he was “insufficiently trained, insufficiently supervised and insufficiently led.”

Timothy Stansbury

Unarmed and with no criminal record, 19-year-old Stansbury was killed in 2004 in a Brooklyn, N.Y., stairwell. The officer who shot him said he was startled and fired by mistake. Police Commissioner Ray Kelly called his death “a tragic incident that compels us to take an in-depth look at our tactics and training, both for new and veteran officers.” A grand jury deemed it an accident.

Sean Bell

Hours before his wedding, 23-year-oldSean Bell left the strip that hosted his bachelor party, jumped into a car with two friends, and was killed when police fire 50 shots into his vehicle. Police say they opened fire after Bell rammed his car into an unmarked police van filled with plainclothes officers. They say they followed Bell and his friends outside the club suspecting that one person in their group had a gun. Referring to Bell and his friends, Mayor Bloomberg told the Associated Press "there is no evidence that they did anything wrong." A judge acquitted the officers of all charges in 2008. 

Orlando Barlow

While surrendering on his knees in front of four Las Vegas police officers, Orlando Barlow was shot with an assault rifle by officer Brian Hartman 50 feet away. Hartman argued that he feared Barlow was feigning surrender and about to grab a gun. Barlow was unarmed. A jury ruled the shooting “excusable.” Hartman later resigned from the force a month before a federal probe uncovered that he and other officers printed T-Shirts labeled ”BDRT” which stood for “Baby’s Daddy Removal Team” and “Big Dogs Run Together.” 

Aaron Campbell

 Portland police officers got a call to check on a suicidal and armed man at an apartment complex. Aaron Campbell,25, came of the apartment walking backward toward police with his hands over his head. The Oregonian reported that police say Campbell ignored their orders to put his hands up. At which point one officer fired six bean bag shots at his back. Witnesses say they saw Campbell reach his arm around his back, where the beanbag struck him. Officer Ronald Frashour said he saw Campbell reach both hands around his waistband to get a gun, and so he shot Campbell in the back with an assault rifle. The jury acquitted the police officer with no criminal wrongdoing.

Victor Steen
17-year-old Victor Steen died when he fled from police, was tasered, crashed his bicycle and was run over by police cruiser. Steen committed a simple traffic violation while riding his bike. The deadly incident was captured on video. The officers were acquitted of any criminal wrongdoing.

Ronald Madison and James Brissette

In 2005, in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, five officers opened fire on an unarmed family on the east side of the Danziger Bridge, killing 17-year-old James Brissette and wounding four others. Next, officers shot at brothers Lance and Ronald Madison. Ronald, a 40-year-old man with severe mental disabilities, was running away when he was hit, and an officer stomped on and kicked him before he died. In a federal criminal trial, five officers involved in what have become known as the “Danziger Bridge Shootings” were convicted of various civil rights violations, but not murder.

Oscar Grant

On New Years morning, 2009, three Bay Area Rapid Transit officers pulled 22-year-old Oscar Grant and four other black men off a train in Oakland. You can view what happened afterwards in this Youtube video. In it, former-transit officer Mehserle can be seen shooting Grant in the back. During the trial, Mehserle argued that he thought Grant was reaching for a gun near his waistband. To stop this from happening, Mehserle said he intended to Tase him, but shot him with a pistol instead. He was sentenced to two years in prison and served 11 months.

Jordan Davis

On Nov. 23, an unarmed, 17-year-old Jordan Davis, was shot and killed by Michael Dunn after an argument over loud rap music. Dunn, 46, Davis through the window of a sport utility vehicle at a Jacksonville convenience store gas station before driving away, authorities say.Officials say Dunn parked next to the vehicle where Davis was sitting with three other teens. Dunn complained about the loud music and they started arguing. Dunn told police he thought he saw a gun and fired eight or nine shots into the vehicle. N He is charged with first degree murder.

 Kenneth Chamberlain

On November 19, 2011, after his Life Aid medical alert necklace was inadvertently triggered, police came to Chamberlain’s home and demanded that he open his front door. Despite his objections and statements that he did not need help, the police broke down Chamberlain’s door, tasered him, and then shot him dead. Chamberlain was a 68-year-old, African-American, retired former-Marine, and a 20-year veteran of the Westchester County Department of Corrections. He wore the medical alert bracelet due to a chronic heart problem. A grand jury reviewed the case and decided that no criminal charge would be made against police officers involved in the killing.

Abner Louiama

 30-year-old Haitian immigrant, Abner Louima, was arrested and sodomized with a broomstick inside a restroom in the 70th Precinct station house in Brooklyn. The case became a national symbol of police brutality and fed perceptions that New York City police officers were harassing or abusing young black men as part a citywide crackdown on crime. One officer, Justin A. Volpe, admitted in court in May 1999 that he had rammed a broken broomstick into Mr. Louima’s rectum and then thrust it in his face. He said he had mistakenly believed that Mr. Louima had punched him in the head during a street brawl outside a nightclub in Flatbush, but he acknowledged that he had also intended to humiliate the handcuffed immigrant. He left the force and was later sentenced to 30 years in prison. The commanders of the 70th Precinct were replaced within days of the assault. As the legal case wore on, Charles Schwarz, a former police officer, was sentenced in federal court in 2002 to five years in prison for perjury stemming from the torture case. A jury found that Mr. Schwarz had lied when he testified that he had not taken Mr. Louima to the station house bathroom where the assault took place.

Kimani Gray

16-year-old Kimani was shot four times in the front and side of his body and three times in the back by two New York City police officers as he left a friend’s birthday party in Brooklyn on March 9, 2013. The only publicly identified eyewitness is standing by her claim that he was empty-handed when he was gunned down.

 Kendrec McDade

19-year-old college student McDade was shot and killed in March 2012 when officers responded to a report of an armed robbery of a man in Pasadena, Calif. He was later found to be unarmed, with only a cellphone in his pocket. His death has prompted his family to file a lawsuit, in which McDade’s parents argue that he was left on the street for a prolonged period of time without receiving first aid. According to court documents, McDade’s last words were, “Why did they shoot me?” The officers involved were initially placed on paid administrative leave but have since returned to duty.

Timothy Russell

Russell and his passenger, Malissa Williams, were killed in Cleveland after police officers fired 137 rounds into their car after a chase in December 2012. Officers said they saw a possible weapon, but no weapon or shell casings were found in the fleeing car or along the chase route. 

Steven Washington

Washington was shot by gang-enforcement officers Allan Corrales and George Diego in Los Angeles one night in 2010 after he approached them and appeared to remove something from his waistband. The officers said they’d heard a loud sound in the area and the 27-year-old, who was autistic, was looking around suspiciously. No weapon was ever recovered.

Alonzo Ashley

Police say that 29-year-old Ashley refused to stop splashing water from a drinking fountain on his face at the Denver Zoo one hot day in 2011, then made irrational comments and threw a trash can. The responding officers, who didn’t dispute that he was unarmed, killed him with a Taser, saying he had “extraordinary strength.” No criminal charges were filed against them.

Wendell Allen

Allen was fatally shot in the chest by officers executing a warrant on his house on March 7, 2012, in New Orleans. The 20-year-old was unarmed, and five children were home at the time of his death. Police found 4.5 ounces of marijuana on Allen after they killed him. An attorney for the family says that New Orleans police are investigating whether Officer Joshua Colclough was wrong to pull the trigger.

Travares McGill

In 2005 in Sanford, Fla. (the same county in which Travyon Martin was killed), the 16-year-old was killed by two security guards, one of whom testified that Travares was trying to hit him with his car. But evidence showed that the bullet that killed the teen hit him in the middle of the back and that the guard kept firing even after the car was no longer headed toward him.

Ramarley Graham

18-year-old Ramarley Graham was shot and killed in February of 2012, when Officer Richard Haste and his partner followed Graham into his grandmother’s apartment where Graham was attempting to flush a bag of marijuana down the toilet. Haste fatally shot Graham, who was unarmed, in the chest. The officers did not have a warrant to be inside the home. A Bronx judge later tossed out an indictment against the NYPD cop. No weapon was ever uncovered from the scene.

Tyrone Brown 

32-year-old former Marine from East Baltimore, Tyrone Brown was shot 12 times in a crowded bar after an off-duty Baltimore police officer fires 13 rounds at him for groping one of the officer’s lady friend’s. That officer, Gahiji Tshamba, was indicted for murder and faces a maximum life in prison charge if convicted. Tshamba was sentenced to 15 years in prison.

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journolist:

Michael Brown remembered as a ‘gentle giant’ (St. Louis Post- Dispatch)

Michael Brown posted a haunting message on Facebook last week as he prepared to enter a new phase in his life: college. “if i leave this earth today,” he wrote to a friend, “atleast youll know i care about others more then i cared about my damn self.”

Dozens arrested during protests over Ferguson police shooting (Al Jazeera America)

At least 50 were arrested in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, according to police and local media, after a second night of protests over the death of an unarmed African-American teenager shot to death by a police officer.

Police use tear gas in Ferguson, people jam church for moment of silence (St. Louis Post- Dispatch)

Tension stayed high and raw Monday as the St. Louis region waited for answers in the fatal shooting of an unarmed teenager by a municipal police officer.

Police use tear gas on crowd in Ferguson, Mo., protesting teen’s death (Washington Post)

For a third night, summer rage pitted the people of Ferguson against those sworn to protect them. On Saturday, officers shot and killed 18-year-old Michael Brown. On Sunday, resident protests turned to riots, marked by looting and the burning of several local stores.

Michael Brown Shooting: Tear Gas Fired at Crowd in Ferguson (NBC News)

Fifteen arrests were made. St. Louis city alderman Antonio French posted a series of videos and pictures on Twitter documenting the police response. Young people were seen holding their hands up in the same manner that some witnesses have suggested Brown was at the time of the shooting.

Tensions in Ferguson remain ‘high and raw’ (MSNBC)

“I saw the barrel of the gun pointed at my friend,” said Dorian Johnson, 22. “Then I saw the fire come out of the barrel.” He added that “what began as an order by a police officer to ‘get the f— onto the sidewalk’ quickly escalated into a physical altercation and then, gunfire.”

FBI Investigating Ferguson Police Shooting of Teen Michael Brown (NBC News)

The FBI is opening an investigation into the shooting of unarmed Missouri teenager Mike Brown by a police officer in suburban St. Louis, officials said on Monday.

Eyewitness to Michael Brown shooting recounts his friend’s death (MSNBC)

The last moments of Michael Brown’s life were filled with shock, fear and terror, says a witness who stood just feet away as a police officer shot and killed the unarmed teen. “I saw the barrel of the gun pointed at my friend,” said Dorian Johnson, 22. “Then I saw the fire come out of the barrel.”

In defense of black rage: Michael Brown, police and the American dream (Salon)

The people of Ferguson are angry. Outraged. The officer’s story is dubious. Any black kid with sense knows it is futile to reach into an officer’s vehicle and take his gun. That story is only plausible to people who believe that black people are animals, that black men go looking for cops to pick fights with. Absurdity. Eyewitness accounts like these make far more sense.

This Is Why We’re Mad About the Shooting of Mike Brown (Jezebel)

As a black person in America, it’s getting exhausting to still have to explain, in the year 2014, your right to exist in this country. To explain that you are a human being whose value sits no lower than anyone else’s. To explain our basic humanity. And perhaps worst of all, to explain exactly why we are outraged.

#IfTheyGunnedMeDown Shows How Black People Are Portrayed in Mainstream Media (The Root)

The vicious slaying of Mike Brown by Ferguson, Mo., police has once again shown that the narrative the media paints surrounding black people in America more often than not includes depicting us as violent thugs with gang and drug affiliations. It’s safe to say that Brown has become a victim of what I like to refer to as the “Trayvon Martin effect” in the media.

Michael Brown’s Death Didn’t Happen in a Vacuum (ColorLines)

Residents of Ferguson, Missouri, the black St. Louis suburb where Brown lived and died, confronted police officers on Sunday in a scene that’s since been described by the national media as one that quickly devolved into “looting.” In photos, black residents stood in front of police with their hands up to show that they were unarmed. They chanted the slogans we’ve all become too used to over the years: “What do we want? Justice! When do we want it? Now!”

When Parenting Feels Like a Fool’s Errand: On the Death of Michael Brown. (Stacia Brown)

Did they say, “Kill the police?!” As long as that’s the way you heard it, they did. And that is what AP will wire out to every mainstream news outlet who can be bothered to report the death of another unarmed black son on a Saturday night. Their truth is not our truth.

When police departments don’t look like the cities they’re meant to protect (Washington Post)

The St. Louis suburb of Ferguson where the working-class, majority-black population has been clashing with law enforcement for the last three days has 53 commissioned police officers. According to the city’s police chief, three of them are black.

When We Are Young (Crunk Feminist Collective)

When we are young, often too young to fully understand the anxiety in their voices and the fear in their eyes, many of us listen to our parents tell us how to behave when, not if, we are stopped by the police.

Black Kids Don’t Have to Be College-Bound for Their Deaths to Be Tragic (The Root)

Missouri teen Michael Brown was unarmed when police gunned him down. We don’t need to keep talking about his college plans to communicate that his killing was dead wrong.

Michael Brown and Anti-Black Violence (The Feminist Wire)

Black life matters. Yet the police and their media support team have already begun to execute their standard playbook in the aftermath of yet another slain black youth.

National Moment of Silence Will Remember Victims of Police Brutality (Feminist Majority Foundation)

This Thursday, a National Moment of Silence will be held in cities across the country to remember the lives lost and impacted by police brutality. In the wake of two deadly police-involved shootings in less than a week, online activist Feminista Jones and individual Twitter followers were able to coordinate the event in a single day.

National Moment of Silence #NMOS14

How social media helped facilitate a national moment of silence to honor victims of police brutality, show solidarity with their families, and allow communities to come together in a moment of mourning and support.

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thevampirequeen:

Civil Rights Movement vs Ferguson Protests

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tokomon:

transnormativity:

LITERALLY how can this petition possibly still be struggling to break 70k signatures?? are you against more measures to keep cops from killing black people in the streets? in their own homes? please signal boost this petition to all your social media sites.

you can sign from any country in the world btw it’s not USA exclusive. get on this please.

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I am not Mike Brown. 

solipsistic-interjection:

I am not Mike Brown. I am white. I am middle class. I am female. I am small. I am not considered a threat.

When police see me they see someone who looks like them. They see their mothers, their daughters, their sisters, themselves.

I am not at risk of being shot…

ktothestein:

normcore-dad:

Shout out to Al Jazeera straight up showing a video of their reporters getting tear gassed during a live interview of the Ferguson police chief denying that they are tear gassing journalists.

the truth no longer matters. just say whatever you want.  apparently

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"Take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented." — Elie Wiesel (via dangerouswitnesses)

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beaky-peartree:

even white people are sick of white people’s bullshit

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Tagged As:  #Yes this  #i'm white tag  

mashable:

The image of the dread-locked man (dubbed “da man wit the chips”)  throwing a tear gas canister while wearing an American flag T-shirt and holding a bag of Red Hot Riplets has become the photo of the Ferguson protests. And he wants you to know that he wasn’t throwing it at police. He was throwing it away.

Learn more about the iconic photo here.

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sensei-aishitemasu:

Tear gas is banned in international warfare — and in use in Ferguson, MO
http://www.vox.com/2014/8/14/6001995/ferguson-missouri-tear-gas-painful
In case anyone didn’t know, the use of tear gas was banned in international warfare at the Geneva Convention. These are human rights violations, people. Ferguson PD needs to be put in front of a UN board as war criminals. They are also arresting and detaining journalists.
Stay woke.

sensei-aishitemasu:

Tear gas is banned in international warfare — and in use in Ferguson, MO

http://www.vox.com/2014/8/14/6001995/ferguson-missouri-tear-gas-painful

In case anyone didn’t know, the use of tear gas was banned in international warfare at the Geneva Convention. These are human rights violations, people. Ferguson PD needs to be put in front of a UN board as war criminals. They are also arresting and detaining journalists.

Stay woke.

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nayx:

anarcho-queer:

Ferguson Police conveniently forgot to publicly release this part of the footage.

It shows Michael Brown paying for the pack of cigars he supposedly stole.

The officer who murdered Michael did not know he was a ‘suspect of a robbery’, so the tape of him ‘stealing’ the cigars have no relation to the killing.

But this footage is important because it proves that the police are trying to justify Mike’s murder by slandering his character.

it’s messed up to the umpteenth degree that people are having to defend a dead person from character assassination

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weather-underground:

anarcho-queer:

Captain Johnson Breaks Promise, Uses Tear Gas And Military Vehicles Against Ferguson Protesters

August 17th, 2014

Captain Johnson broke a direct promise he made on Saturday when officers and SWAT under his control broke up the night’s demonstration using military-like vehicles and tear gas while enforcing a midnight curfew.

Johnson insisted at a press conference earlier in the day that those methods would not be used.

We won’t enforce it with trucks, we won’t enforce it with tear gas. We’ll communicate. We’ll talk about, you know what, it’s time to go home,” Johnson told a boisterous crowd.

But shortly after midnight, when the curfew went into effect, riot police equipped with rifles, shields and five armored vehicles, shot tear gas and smoke grenades to disperse defying protesters chanting “No Justice, No Curfew”.

It was initially unclear whether tear gas or smoke was volleyed. Police spokesmen on the ground told reporters there that the anti-riot agent they were using was merely smoke.

But several reporters tweeted pictures of the canisters they picked off the ground which showed that riot CS smoke was being used.

Credit

not to mention live rounds. 

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The Path With Obstacles


PunkPinkPower.
Multifandom writer, vidder, artist, and podcaster
Multishipper.
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