After the deaths of two 18-year-old St. Louis men, Michael Brown and Vonderrit Myers,Jr., tensions continue to rise in St. Louis.Protest organizers plan to protest throughout Ferguson and St. Louis at undisclosed locations for a day of civil disobedience called “Moral Monday” (Oct.13) and the police are not happy about it.
Protesters met on Sunday (Oct.12) to discuss and practice strategies and tactics for their protests so they could be prepared for whatever methods the police use to interfere with their demonstration. St. Louis Metropolitan Police Chief Sam Dotson said that the police do not like the unknown and plan to do their best to keep the community safe.
“Anything that would impact the average person’s daily life concerns me,” Dotson said. “Can I keep the public safe? Can I keep the officers safe? Can I keep some sense of normalcy in our community?”
“Moral Monday” wraps up #FergusonOctober, a four-day-weekend of rallies,meetings and marches about social activism. Since the anticipated conduct of the protesters is unknown, Dotson is taking extra precaution to prepare for whatever unruliness they may bring. Extra police officers will be at St. Louis’ football and baseball stadiums to prevent any protests from happening. Officers will also be using handheld cameras to record any events that take place in case of later discord.
Celeste Faison told USA Today that she and the organizers wanted to “make sure we have people trained to stop business as usual.”
“We are saying that until we have justice for Mike Brown, until we have systemic change and the elimination of oppressive systems, we are going to stop business as usual. Folks will no longer be comfortable and maintaining the status quo,” said Faison, who has been training protesters.
As a part of the training, protesters have been told to write a phone number for bail and legal help on their upper arms and to go limp or turn on their sides if officers beat them,