Video: Faith leaders in Ferguson, a view from within the protests

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Children protest

S.J. Creek

Five children grab the attention of demonstrators outside the Ferguson police department. August 30, 2014

Saturday’s National March on Ferguson was largest daytime protest in Ferguson, Missouri since Michael Brown was shot.

McKendree University sociologist S.J. Creek was there. The video (just a couple of minutes) features some of her interviews with clergy and faith activists. It’s a unique look into what the protests are like on the ground. It was a hot, muggy–and even rainy–day. The protests were organized. Protestors held orange signs distributed by members of the Nation of Islam and followed a route that included the Canfield Green Apartments (to the very place where Michael Brown was shot and killed) and the Ferguson police station. S.J. gives a fresh look on the events from within the protests.

S.J. Creek is an assistant professor of sociology at McKendree University. S.J. research focuses on religious movements, identities, race/class/gender, and sexualities. You can follow S.J. on twitter at @holyunicorns1.

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  • “jesus always stood on the side of the oppressed”

    No he didn’t.
    Jesus only cared about Jesus:

    They are “dogs” – Jesus
    They are “swine” – Jesus
    They are “fools” – Jesus
    The master shall “cut him to pieces” – Jesus
    “execute them” – Jesus
    “you never knew me” – Jesus
    “make a testimony against them” – Jesus
    “I shall make enemies of a household; a mother against son…” – Jesus
    “believe in me or be damned” – Jesus

    “hate your mother, hate your father…hate your life” – Jesus

    Jesus had more in common with the cops
    who shot Brown
    than in the victims of this ridiculous religious delusion.

    Meanwhile, the true humanists are the lawyers who will defend Brown. The police who will quit the force for this injustice and the judges who swear allegiance to the US Constitution and not silly bibles.

  • Excellent post, as usual, Max.
    Just wondering how many days it’s been since the “murder,” and still no indictment??
    When cops can shoot anyone they please anytime they please, what we are left with is ANARCHY (the second most feared word in America, the first being “Atheists”). The longer it takes to indict this murderer, the worse we look to the world, if not to our own nation (apparently a heck of a lot of people, mostly Tea Party types, aren’t in the least bothered by this). If it was a white kid who got shot, guess where officer wilson would be right now?

  • @Jack Mathys,

    You are correct – we have a big problem in our country with injustice.
    It must feel exactly like anarchy in some neighborhoods like this one in Ferguson where the line between criminals and cops is so blurred.
    It is completely unacceptable.

    My own theory: Politics isn’t working. The USA is running on religious fumes – republican power has been goosed up by Evangelical big money oligarchs like the Kochs, Greens, Wal-mart family (etc) and Rupert Murdoch’s Fox News friends who have funded an army of Tea Party ‘god and country’ do nothings. They obstruct progress and fund destabilizing programs like regressive taxation, anti-research, anti-science, Anti-climate change, pro Creationism in schools, diminished rights of workers, unions and particularly women.
    It feels like a Theocracy in some parts of the country.

    The racial problems are symptoms of class divergence. Too many poor folks can’t get decent work. The middle class is dead. The disparity of wealth has hit new extremes and it is out of control.

    Wouldn’t it be great if some very practical minded people were voted into office who wanted to solve problems head on – instead of these ideologues?

    I fear we have blown our nation’s wealth on 12 years of disastrous wars with nothing to show for our loss of blood and treasure. Only a very progressive tax on wealth and a new aggressive attitude of funding our infrastructure (including revamping education of our poor communities) will turn it around.

    Fat chance of that while the Tea Party rules however. Even democrats fail to inspire.

  • William

    Max: is this satire?

  • William

    Jack: if an indictment comes, it will come from a Grand Jury of citizens who will decide if Deadly Force was not legal, not from the lynch mob of Protestors.

    Maybe you need an American Civics Course?

  • Max, I agree with almost everything you said, except when you started talking about changing things from within–Congress, for example. Congress is a dead dog as far as I am concerned, nothing left but greedy swindlers, thieves and extortionists. Right now they are so inept they are creating a virtual dictatorship, via Executive Order, in the presidency. Watch them try to overturn one of those! So the prez has unlimited power, the Congress is doing nothing as it is mired in in-fighting, and the courts are increasingly being bought off by big money. It’s time for a REAL change. If they want anarchy, I say we give it to them. Oh, right, that would involve getting people off their butts as they watch How I Met Your Mother. There’s really nothing to be done except watch the carnage and keep it off my block, or emigrate. And William, if you don’t have something constructive to say, get off the wall.

  • @Jack Mathys,

    You may be right.
    When it comes to politics, I’m less certain.
    Theocracy and the breakdown of Separation of Church and State – that is my real fear.

    I see the huge corporate lobbies (Kochs) and Media (Fox) colluding with big money Evangelicals and Politicians (Palin, Bachmann, et al) riding into power spouting about JESUS and doing a take-over with gerrymandering and sneaky stuff like that.
    Obama is a big disappointment.

    But religion in politics – that is the rub. If the tide can shift away from religion (I don’t see it yet) it might clear the way to more rational government – but I don’t claim to know.

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