Police Attack Demonstration in Downtown St. Louis

By Larry Everest | November 26, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us


Police violently shut down a mass demonstration in central St. Louis today. After government officials claimed they’d “respect” peoples’ right to protest, police today pepper sprayed protesters trying to enter City Hall—supposedly a public building—and then suddenly declared the whole demonstration of 250 an “illegal assembly.” Police later claimed it was because someone “made contact” with a security guard.

"We're not gonna give up until we get justice!" Interview with an activist in the Freedom Fighters organization at the protest in St. Louis, 11/26/14.

But this was just a bullshit excuse to violently clampdown on protest—after yammering on for weeks how they were trying to prevent “violence.”  When the police were lining up to attack people, protesters who simply voiced their outrage at the police actions were openly pointed at by the head pig—one man was swarmed by police, violently taken down, and arrested without warning.  Then police, seemingly just to humiliate people, declared the exact same march route people had taken to City Hall to be an “illegal assembly” and demanded people go on the sidewalks.

Peoples’ hurt and outrage were palpable. 

St. Louis, 11/26/2014—"Indict! Convict! Send the killer cop to jail! The whole damn system is guilty as hell!"

The march had begun at 10:30 with a brief rally at Kiener Park, and then a peoples’  trial of Darren Wilson at the Old Courthouse.  It had been organized by Freedom Fighters and Tribe-X, two organizations formed in the wake of the August uprising against Michael Brown’s murder.  (Freedom Fighters is made up of Black women.)  The march was diverse—mainly youth. There were Black and white college students. There were clergy, including one who had come from Illinois. And many activists.  Some of the white people I talked to described being previously oblivious to the situation of Black people, but then being deeply impacted and changed by Michael Brown’s murder.  One young woman, a social worker advocate, carried a sign saying:  "My life changed when I started to listen."

People then marched down Market Street, shutting down traffic on one side.  When the march got to the intersection with Tucker Boulevard, people formed a chain, holding hands and encircling the whole intersection, and then stood silently for four-and-a-half minutes—a minute for every hour Michael Brown’s dead body was left in the street by the Ferguson pigs.  Then the march went to City Hall where the police attacked. 

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