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STL and Ferguson: A Tale of Two Cities

Updated on December 3, 2014
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Shine ON St. Louis!

St. Louis struggles over peace and justice in the controversy over Michael Brown, a town divided and torn. Saddened by the tragedy and the effect on their hometown, St. Louis stuggles to retain peace and dignity among chaos and violence on their streets.

Responses are fired with anger on both sides, and met with an avalanche of often impulsive and raging verbal battles. The battles are waged everywhere from social media to restaurants and street corners.

The Charles Dickens tale, A Tale of Two Cities involves major themes of duality and revolution, also resurrection. Certainly the first two themes apply to Ferguson, MO. We certainly hope that Ferguson and St. Louis can be resurrected to a more peaceful place.




Social media is already smothered with avalanches of debate over this controversy. Consider these links that are honest and direct resources to shed light beyond the usual mainstream rhetoric.

About the Author: CrossCreations is a native of St. Louis, MO who once lived in Ferguson.

Racism in Ferguson: No Debate without Hate - and Bias

The problem with this type of debate is that most people are set in their beliefs as to what happened and what they wish to believe. There exists sort of a stubborn and collective blind spot. Few will admit that there may be events we know nothing about, nor explore beyond personal bias and mainstream media hype to entertain possibilities beyond their own personal default.

Can YOU think outside the box of your own personal beliefs and bias? The avalanche of anger, hatred and media hype over the Ferguson shooting hits hard on all sides. And in most cases there are blind spots - directions of thought that get stubborn resistance to even consider.

Source

Trending on Twitter and Blowing Social Media Gaskets

August 9th was the day of the shooting. November 24th finally returns the Grand Jury decision. White police officer kills black unarmed teen, and no indictment. And the scab is ripped off the nasty wound to St. Louis again. Fiery riots in the streets, looting and violence. Again.

Urban Renewal & St. Louis History

During the 1960s a huge complex of high rise units for low income housing in the inner city of St. Louis (Pruitt-Igoe) failed miserably. It was destroyed and in the next few decades section 8 apartment complexes invaded much of north county.

Communities in north county St. Louis became saturated with large numbers of poor families, many unemployed and on government assistance. These area became overloaded with poor unskilled people without job opportunities. Residents feared a rise in crime rate and the trend of 'white flight' spread across northern St. Louis County.

Ferguson was just one of many municipalities where demographics drastically changed. Maybe the most dramatic fall was in the community of Spanish Lake, but 'white flight' has also effected Florissant, Hazelwood, Jennings, Riverview, Pine Lawn and many others.

Recent Documentary Film: Racial Tension in St. Louis MO

Spanish Lake
Spanish Lake

Documentary about another small community not far from Ferguson, MO where similar issues arose. White flight and racial profiling are clearly driven variables in the fall of Spanish Lake, MO. Two communities, similar history and trends.

This important documentary film was directed by Phillip Andrew Morton, St. Louis native. It was due to release at Wehrenburg Theatres within weeks of the Ferguson shooting. However due to the violence and chaos, the film was not allowed to be shown. Owners feared violence at theatres, despite the fact that the film contains no racist bents at all, quite the contrary.

A balanced and informative documentary that reveals urban events that may shock even St. Louis natives.

Now available on Amazon for purchace or rental.

 

A Movement for PEACE in Saint Louis

Statue of King Louis IX of France, namesake of St. Louis, Missouri - located in front of the Saint Louis Art Museum in Forest Park.  Peace sign flag added to image as Grand Jury decision was announced and violence resulted.
Statue of King Louis IX of France, namesake of St. Louis, Missouri - located in front of the Saint Louis Art Museum in Forest Park. Peace sign flag added to image as Grand Jury decision was announced and violence resulted.

The World Takes Sides about Michael Brown: Questions to Consider

The indictment is only a summons to trial to further investigate evidence. It is not a guilty verdict.

  • On one side there's accusations of senseless police violence and racial profiling of an unarmed black male. WAS this racial profiling? Did the police officer go too far?
  • Defenders of the police officer demand his right to self defense, to do his duty to serve and protect. WAS it self-defense? Does that right to self-defense include murder?
  • Michael Brown was no Boy Scout. Still he was unarmed and black. Many argue that IF he were from a white weathy family, the entire story would be different. Ample evidence of police brutality toward blacks and minorities does exist. Does Michael Brown's past record excuse his murder?
  • Whether the police offer should be charged or not, why NOT go to trial?
  • Was the Grand Jury conducted appropriately?
  • To indict the officer is not a guilty verdict, but rather a summons to trial. Given the many inconsistencies and loose ends, why shouldn't Officer Wilson and all of the facts be aired in open court where they can be cross-examined?

There is no actual evidence as to what transpired when the cop first appeared but before the shooting happened. Did Michael Brown respond with expletives when asked to get to side of the road? Did Officer Wilson then lose his temper and attempt to grab Brown, causing the struggle to begin? Many of the 'eye witness accounts' of the actual shooting were discredited by physical evidence, and the rest were very inconsistent.

Number of cities around the world that held protests on the night the Grand Jury decision about the Ferguson shooting was returned? (Huffington Post)

================> 178 <===================

Peaceful Protesters VS Violence and Looters

Protestors' efforts were hijacked by violence and looting, still the media often refers to looters as protestors. These are opposing sides. The thugs grab the opportunity of a protest to be thugs, that is all.

Looters appear after natural disasters like hurricanes and tornadoes, too. Nobody is protesting against mother nature. It's chaos, and street thugs and crooks like to take advantage of chaos.

Resist efforts to depict protestors as looters, VERY different!

True peace is not merely the absence of tension - it is the presence of justice.

— MLK

Darren Wilson will not stand trial, but our criminal justice system absolutely must.

— Marianne Williamson

Ferguson in Black & White - New Book

Author Jeff Smith is an urban policy professor and former Missouri State Senator. Who better offer perspective and explore the roots of Ferguson's rage?

He offers insights on how other cities can address racial and class inequality so that they might avoid the chaos on St. Louis streets.

This author has the background and experience to provide readers with an honest and frank evaluation that will help all of us better understand the numerous variables in this Ferguson controversy.

Powerful Image:  Racism in St. Louis
Powerful Image: Racism in St. Louis | Source
Debate Without Hate!
Debate Without Hate! | Source

Can YOU Debate Racism Without Hate?

CAN YOU?

If you CAN discuss Ferguson and the protest

without hatred and name-calling,

then your comments

are welcome below.

Think outside the box...

get beyond hateful racial bias

or be deleted.

Hate solves nothing.

Amen.

Comments

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    • CrossCreations profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolan Ross 

      3 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      BDO ^^ you seem obsessed with this black cop VS white cop gig. OK so here's a thought... why do you suppose there are so few black cops? In Ferguson or anywhere?

      I don't think it's because numbers of blacks tried to become cops and failed or were not allowed to do so. Those who really wanted to become cops are wearing the uniform.

      Think there's much motivation for a black to become a cop? I mean... maybe they'd be pressured from both sides. To do their job and uphold the law and yet possibly threatened by blacks who expect them to look the other way rather than arrest their own. Think?

    • profile image

      bdo 

      3 years ago

      Do you think it would help if they had more black cops even if it means having some white cops go undercover as black?

    • CrossCreations profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolan Ross 

      3 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Such conflicting feelings about it all ... ALL sides look guilty in one way or another. Michael Brown was no angel, yet the officer did seem to overreact AND the Grand Jury decision not to indict in the face of the mess? Oh MY!

      Trouble in River City, for REAL! Sad to see such a dark could over my hometown even if this battle was inevitable to happen somewhere.

    • lovemychris profile image

      Leslie Mccowen 

      3 years ago from Cape Cod, USA

      I agree....this is the one that broke the camel's back.

    • CrossCreations profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolan Ross 

      3 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      That hesitancy for those entities to alienate each other ^^ is real, unfortunately, and yet they've created a monster with their fear. This has only just begun...

    • lovemychris profile image

      Leslie Mccowen 

      3 years ago from Cape Cod, USA

      Graylan Hagler, a justice advocate from Washington, reacting to the verdict stated that the grand jury, the prosecutors, and police all work together and "there’s a hesitancy for any of those entities to alienate each other.”

      *****

      Which is why the community was begging to have the DA remove from this case! Nobody listened....

    • CrossCreations profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolan Ross 

      3 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Yes I agree there are still unanswered questions out there and many pieces of the puzzle that refuse to fit. An indictment is not a guilty verdict, but rather merely a summons to trial. It would allow further investigation AND cross examination. If Officer Wilson is innocent then why refuse? Under the circumstances, to slam that door was asking for trouble.

    • lovemychris profile image

      Leslie Mccowen 

      3 years ago from Cape Cod, USA

      This has been going on for sooooo long. But I think this time, it won't be swept under the rug.

      Chicago mayor--or was it gvr....suspended the death penalty because the officers had been BEATING confessions out of black men. Remember!

      My friend was framed by a white system....and I mean Lily White boys and girls club.

      But even white people saw the injustice there.....and it brought about the discussion of taping police interrogations.--making it law

      This is a no-brainer as far as I'm concerned.

      Tape it--film it--and no "losing tapes"!

      Ferguson is bringing to light police wearing cams, so everything they do is recorder.

      Good idea.

      Because--I wondered as soon as I heard it....that DA said Wilson got a call about a robbery in progress....but before that, they said he didn't know anything about it--only stopped Brown for walking in the road....

      where is the tape of that call....

      And, if Wilson had been wearing a cam--the whole thing would have been recorded.

      So--something better WILL come out of this...I'm sure.

      and do you know, a guy was arrested for filming the police during the protests.....excuse me: we should be allowed to film anything we like! Especially a public servant doing the job WE pay them for!

      imagine that...paying for your own abuse

      Good cops: better get on the road w the good people!

      There are more of us then them......hands down

      No one wants to see their baby hurt. Be that any color, creed, nationality or job!

    • profile image

      big daddy oreo 

      3 years ago

      If I was a police officer I would artificially darken my skin black and go undercover as a black cop. Black cops do not have to worry about this kind of stuff. The white man getting a race change is looking like more of a possibility moving forward.

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