Sunday in Ferguson

First I should say this: The most impressive thing about what is happening here is again the huge number of young people who are coming out and really taking the lead. Their leadership is in ways that old timers like me never would have thought of, and the main thing is in revving up and keeping the spirit going. People gather in the lot of the QT that was burned to the ground, but they also line the street. From time to time, a young person will march up and down the street leading chants. “Hands up! Don’t shoot!” is the main one, but “No justice, no peace!” is also changed.

Then there are the carloads of young people slowly driving up and down the street blowing their horns,, hanging out the doors and windows, hands raised…

It all really looks like a new movement being born.

This afternoon there was a huge rally at a church a couple of miles away from the main gathering point for the protest.  The big names spoke there – Al Sharpton, local Democrats, etc. The way it was set up, and given that the cops block off the main street where the protest is, even before it was over it was impossible to drive back to the protest and difficult to drive anywhere near it.

Could it be that that was the plan – to try to keep people off the street?

If it was, it didn’t work very well, because by nightfall the crowd was at least twice the size of Saturday night. Up and down the street we marched. Until suddenly the people at the front came running back. The cops had shot off tear gas. As far as I could see, this was totally unprovoked, as the mood was angry, yes, but also festive and there was absolutely no vandalism or anything like that.

There was massive confusion, but also order in the confusion.

I would like to write more and also post photos and video, but it’s late here and it’s been a long day. I will have a lot of photos and video up on a day or two, so to all of those I met in Ferguson: Please check back later. 

About oaklandsocialist

This is the web site of the Oakland/East Bay Socialist Group. We are a small group of workers, youth and retirees in the Oakland/East Bay area and are affiliated with the Workers International Network (WIN). WIN is just that - an international network that doesn't pretend to be more than it is. We believe that socialists must participate in the struggles of workers around the world, and that an essential part of that struggle is discussing and learning from our experiences. Contact us at Oaklandsocialist@gmail.com.
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7 Responses to Sunday in Ferguson

  1. Kendall Martin says:

    It’s time for us black people to come together an demand a change peacefully but determine to get a change because this world wasn’t designed for us to prosper but with there laws put in place we must go at them with there own game an beat them at it to bring about a change we are smart wise people an together it can happen tupac shakur tried to bring us together an they got rid of him but together as one we can over come the famous word of Dr Martin Luther King we shall over come

    • Actually, if by “this world” you mean capitalism in the United States, then I think it was designed for the great majority to be plundered and for black people to be held down the most. And don’t forget that Dr. Martin Luther King, towards the end of his life, said that “we are engaged in the class struggle,” and that “maybe America must move towards democratic socialism.”

  2. John says:

    If you were in the back of the crowd as you say you were how could possibly know what went on in the front of the crowd??? Maybe you should correct your story after hearing from the RCMP and learning more about what really happened. Your incorrect opinion causes others that read your posts to act with more rage. It will also put more children at risk. Your comments are intended to upset people rather than calm them down. Very irresponsible. Your Words “there was absolutely no vandalism or anything like that”. Throwing rocks, surely you seen them all over the road, Fire bombs, shots fired…. Not to sure where you were?????

    • No, I wasn’t at the back of the crowd; I was about a block or so behind the front line. I had an interesting conversation Monday morning with the commentator for CNN. On air, he said something to the effect that shots were fired and then the police responded with tear gas. After he went off air, I asked him whether he personally heard the shots. “Yes,” the said. “Where did they come from?” “Over that way,” he said, indicating way down the street away from where the police were. “So you’re saying they came after 8:30, after the tear gas was fired?” I asked. “Yes,” he said. The exact opposite of the impression he’d left on air. As for molotov cocktails, I will say that there were no such things thrown. If there had been, I would have seen them and so would have others. That is another complete lie made up by the police. In fact, even a reporter on CNN this morning admitted that there were none. This “John” (also my name) is one of those who simply has swallowed whole the image of black youth that the media sows. And the less he knows, the more he shoots his mouth off.

    • kim says:

      well john I was at the front of the crowd and one of the leaders of the march and we were very peaceful marching and chanting until the blocked us off and trapped some of us un shooting rubber bullets and tear gas at us( no command center was ever attacked we where all unarmed and it was between 8- 8:30 cst well before the curfew) we were called animals and told we should have never been protesting or we wouldn’t have been shot the took cameras and cell phones and where tossed in jail as well as my 17yr old sister. we where not mirandized or told what we were there for the didn’t even give us a phone call til after we where released, ur watching 1sided news and think you know whats going on here when the truth is in your face he was there and I met him and whats going on in stl needs to stop especially the lies and cover ups by the media.

      • thanks for your report, Kim. We were there for a few days, but had to return to Oakland. Please feel free to submit any future reports or comments.
        Oaklandsocialist

  3. windyriver says:

    An friend of mine here has family in St Louis. He told me today he spoke to his grandfather there and there are also protests going on in St Louis, attended by all kinds of people, supporting the demonstrators in Ferguson.

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