DOJ Report: Police in Ferguson Antagonized Demonstrators and Violated Their Free-Speech Rights
The summary report examines local and state law enforcement’s response to the unrest following the police killing of Michael Brown.
By Nigel Roberts

“A U.S. Department of Justice report finds significant faults in law enforcement’s response to the demonstrations last summer in Ferguson, Mo., over the slaying of Michael Brown, the Associated Press reports.

State and local authorities antagonized demonstrators in several ways, such as using military-style equipment and inappropriately using tear gas. The DOJ also concluded that authorities violated the free-speech rights of protesters and withheld information that they should have made public, according to AP.

The report examines the two weeks of demonstrations and tumult following a white officer fatally shooting the unarmed black teenager last August. It is part of a more detailed “after-action” assessment of the police in Ferguson, St. Louis city and county and the Missouri State Highway Patrol, which is scheduled for release in upcoming weeks.

Federal authorities point to the poor relationship between the Ferguson Police Department and the black community as a core issue. In an earlier investigation, the Justice Department found that the police routinely violated the rights of the black residents they served.

The community’s hostility toward Ferguson police added fuel to the unrest. Making matters worse, the authorities failed to disseminate properly what they knew about Brown’s death.

“Had law enforcement released information on the officer-involved shooting in a timely manner and continued the information flow as it became available, community distrust and media skepticism would most likely have been lessened,” the report states, according to AP.

The Justice Department’s Community Oriented Policing Services office prepared the report. That section of the department focuses on building trust between police and communities.”

Yes, Sir, I am calling in sick
because my people are
dying on their knees
with their hands in the air,
praying to a god
who prefers white skin;
and the last time
we went to church,
we found our pastor’s blood
in the communion wine
but unlike God
he did not turn into bread;
and the last time
we dipped our hands in holy water,
an officer shoved us in
and choked us under
until the water turned black;
and the last time
we tried to breathe,
an arm clamped around our neck
and forced us to the ground
so we could hear our lungs explode
in our collapsing chest;
and the last time
we tried to stand up straight,
our spine snapped in two,
and when we tried to run,
our back ate four bullets,
our heart ate one,
and when we asked to be buried
in that same little town,
a pale-skinned terrorist
carried out the will of God;
and maybe, maybe I could
make it to work,
but I’m afraid to leave my house
because corpses hang from every tree:
corpses from a hundred years ago,
corpses from a hundred years from now,
corpses from this morning,
stripped of their names,
swinging in a stale white wind;
and you expect me to act normal,
to smile wide
and assure you that my people
are just exaggerating
about our own bullet wounds,
but even Uncle Tom
died at his master’s feet;
so, Sir, I am incredibly sorry
to inconvenience you,
but my people are dead
and my heart is sick,
and I’ll need a lifetime
just to cut down these trees.
—  When Life Cannot Go On As Normal.
Mourning the souls who are still your soul.

Remember to practice lots of self-care, everyone, and to take time to mourn or cry or scream or write or dance or whatever you need to do.  Don’t let anyone tell you how you should feel.

none-sam-left-demon asked:

Why are tags such as Ferguson being deleted?

I was really disappointed that this rumor got traction, and I hope you all know that there is nothing more important to our team than your trust.

Outside of a small handful of posts that were doxxing individuals (publishing credit card information, Social Security numbers, and private addresses, which we don’t allow for obvious reasons), we absolutely did not censor tags or remove posts about Ferguson.

Quite the contrary, our team featured the Ferguson tag (and a bunch of related tags) in all the places where we highlight content—as a trending tag, in the radar, and on our staff blog. If you search for “Ferguson,” you’ll see all of the hundreds of thousands of posts you made.
Feds Say Police In Ferguson Violated Protesters’ Rights And Unnecessarily Escalated Violence
The third of 4 Ferguson reports claims police were at fault last August.

Almost one year ago, the shooting death of Michael Brown sparked a wave of protests over the teen’s death and the general mistreatment of black lives in Ferguson. Police responded with riot gear and tear gas, leaving many demonstrators wounded — including an 8-year-old boy.


May 20

On Mike Brown’s 19th birthday, Michael Brown Sr., family members, and community members removed the memorials from Canfield Drive.

Urban League will store the removed items until a permanent location for the memorial is found.

Family members stopped to pray and for a moment of silence before continuing to remove the memorials.

After Canfield Drive is resurfaced tomorrow, a plaque and a dove will be installed in the street as replacements for the memorials.

Michael Brown Sr. unveils the plaque and dove.

More pictures of the removal: pictures 1, pictures 2, pictures 3

Videos of the removal: video 1, video 2, video 3, video 4, video 5, video 6, video 7

The legacy of slavery, Jim Crow, discrimination in almost every institution of our lives, you know, that casts a long shadow, and that’s still part of our DNA that’s passed on.  We’re not cured of it. And it’s not just a matter of it not being polite to say ‘nigger’ in public. That’s not the measure of whether racism still exists or not.”

… Societies don’t overnight completely erase everything that happened two to 300 years prior.


Discussing racism in America with comedian Marc Maron, PRESIDENT OBAMA.

We’re not cured of it.

(via the New York Times)