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Scenes from Ferguson: the Uprising's Reach, and the Reaction by Larry Everest

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December 10, 2014

I've been in Ferguson since November 22, and I don't think a day has gone by where there hasn't been a protest, most often multiple protests. There may be one at the Ferguson police station, and another in the St. Louis Shaw neighborhood, just south of the city center, or perhaps on one of the campuses: Washington University, St. Louis University, the University of Missouri St. Louis, and/or out in Clayton or West County.

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At 2pm, on Wednesday, December 10 -- International Human Rights Day -- 70 medical students at the Washington University Medical School conducted a moving protest and die-in, right in the main atrium entrance to the university. This was part of the nationwide #WhiteCoats4BlackLives protest that reportedly took place at some 80 different medical schools across the U.S.

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Medical Students Introduce their #WhiteCoats4BlackLives die in

Medical Student Die In
(Image by Larry Everest/
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Monday, December 8, 250 people packed a meeting of the Ferguson Commission, formed by Governor Jay Nixon to look into the social and political conditions behind the "unrest" and make recommendations so the St. Louis area can become a "stronger, fairer place for everyone to live." The meeting took place in the Shaw neighborhood, near where 18-year-old Vonderrit Myers Jr. was murdered by police. Things went as planned until St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson began reading his remarks. The room erupted with protest and boos and Dotson was forced to stop speaking. Some people left, fed up with the meeting. Others stuck around, hoping this state-led process might work.

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The Sunday before, 80 people protested in the Shaw area against the St. Louis Police Department's "finding" on Friday that they committed "no criminal wrongdoing" when they shot and killed Vonderrit Myers Jr. on October 8. (The county prosecutors have supposedly not yet decided whether or not to charge Myers' killer.) Twenty others protested police murders at a performance of Annie at the Fox Theater attended by hundreds of parents and children. "They got to see what's going on in the world," one demonstrator told the St. Louis Post Dispatch (December 8, 2014). "They're going to be thinking about it, and they're going to be asking their parents questions."

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Larry Everest is the author of Oil, Power & Empire: Iraq and the U.S. Global Agenda (Common Courage 2004), a correspondent for Revolution newspaper ( where this first appeared, who has reported from Iran, Iraq and Palestine, and a (more...)

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