Ferguson: A Year After The Indictment
it’s been too long! My apologies for the lapse in communication.
Many of you have heard or noticed that today marks one year from the night that a grand jury returned a decision to bring no indictment on Darren Wilson for the shooting death of Mike Brown, Jr. I cannot describe all the feelings that have rushed over me today, and at random throughout the year.
On this night last year, many of you prayed for and marched with us. Many of you watched news feeds and live streams, texted emailed and called me, and came to pray with us.
And I covet your prayers as ever, but tonight perhaps even more.
Mike Higgins, my dad, will be on call in south STL, while Sean Loftin – my husband – and I will go with a group to Ferguson.
Our plan is to lead a vigil and hold the space in front of the PD, along with local clergy, from 7pm to at least 8pm. We do this to disrupt the presumption that things have gone “back to normal” in Ferguson, and to display a non-violent demand for justice; for fair and impartial policing, for an end to racial profiling, and for a commitment to anti-bias and cultural intelligence training and a dedication to minority recruitment from STL County police departments.
Each person is convinced that the person they view as an enemy will NEVER treat them as a friend. When humans fear each other enough to despise one another, it brings about a hate that will erode our entire region.
People of faith know all too well, all too personally, that this is not true. So we are called (whether or not we want to be) to share this gospel of reconciliation, and speaking that truth in spaces like the Ferguson PD is one of the most difficult thing many of us have ever had to do.
So I’m walking directly into the dissonance that makes me sweat… hoping against hope that God’s truth will triumph; that some small light will be shone in this darkness. St. Louis, Ferguson, Minneapolis, Chicago… and on and on.
At a planning meeting for tonight’s vigil, I was able to jot down these quotes from clergy and local organizers:
Agitators will no doubt be present; disguised as activists, employed as police. When I tell you that I am sore afraid, know that this fear comes with a hearty combo of caution and downright dogged determination to be present anyhow.
Should we hide from the world we cannot escape? No I am persuaded by the testimony of my faith that if I esteem my safety over that of those I love, and even above the safety of those I disagree with, that I am not worthy of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
If we are there, the Holy Spirit will be there.