In cities across North Carolina, thousands of people gathered Tuesday evening to voice their feelings about the grand jury decision in Ferguson, Mo. not to indict a white policeman for the shooting death of Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager.
Here’s a sampling of those remarks:
As reported by WBTV in Charlotte:
“Until we have a true system where people actually feel that they’re apart of it, we’re going to continue to have things like we did last night, unfortunately,” Bree Newsome said.
“I’m not going to go blow up cars, I’m not going to go to set things on fire, I’m going to my elected officials. I’m going straight to Pennsylvania avenue,” said Chandler Sanders, a local minister who says change starts with them.
From the Asheville Citizen Times:
“I came because I wanted to support my people,” said Nicholas Burton, 32, who wears long dreadlocks and a nose ring. “Black Americans are facing genocide. Privilege is something that isn’t given to all Americans, especially people of color. Events like this help white people see that black lives matter.”
From the Winston Salem Journal:
Student Charity Timberlake said that blacks need to convince white society of their humanity.
“I feel that it is up to us to redefine our perception within American culture,” she said. “I think the reason behind everything is we are not viewed as people, so it is OK to kill us, and that is why he (the Ferguson officer) got off … We have to make it a point to put that
in their face that we are people and do deserve respect.”
John Roach, a white man, said he was saddened by talk from demonstrators that they were going to “shut down” Ferguson.
“It is sad that they (the protesters) can’t see the lack of value in violence and that it is no way to a peaceful end,” he said. “What good does that do?”
And from WTVD in Durham:
“We hope that the community will take pause and reflect on what has happened in this case and realize that situations like this will continue to be a part of our everyday lives until we become more active in letting our voices be heard. Marching and protests are good. When they are over, what is the next step?” Fayetteville NAACP President James Buxton Jr. said.