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On August 9, 2014, seeing the lifeless body of Michael Brown Jr. laid out in the blistering heat for four and half hours on Twitter shook my world but little did I know it would change my world forever. Michael Brown changed my life. I know a lot of people say this but it’s the truth. Michael radicalized me. And it constantly breaks my heart that his life had to be taken for me to see how much the world hasn’t changed from what I thought. He’s supposed to be going into his sophomore year of college. Not six feet under.

It’s crazy to think back even before Michael Brown was murdered of the talk my father and I had about movements. We were riding in our family car one day and we were listening to a radio personality talk about the Civil Rights and Black Power Movement. My father asked me if there was something tragic that were to happen would my generation come out? I told him I didn’t know. I didn’t have that faith of my generation but when Michael Brown was murdered that all changed.

I didn’t come out on August 9. By my family’s concern, I stayed in the house observing everything that was going on through Twitter as our local media was blocked out. If it weren’t for Twitter, I would have never known what went on that night. I wasn’t expecting to use a tool that I only used for social inquiries to do the jobs that our local and mainstream media were doing wrong. After observing for a few days, I went out in the streets and never left. Tear gas, rubber bullets, running in fear for my life, being arrested twice in one week couldn’t keep me away. Couldn’t keep any of us away. Before August 9, I felt like my life didn’t have a purpose. Now a year later, being a part of this movement, I feel like I’m doing what I was called to do. This year has been a lot. Mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually but I wouldn’t change it for anything in the world because through tragedy we built community. We built family.

People thought we were crazy for continuing to protest and getting abused by the police. Nobody thought this movement would last a month let alone a year but we were compelled to do it because we knew nobody else would do it for us. It was our duty. We knew that what happened to Mike could have been any of us. I go out there with that mindset every time I’m out in the streets that I’m fighting for not only myself but for my brothers and sisters. For my nieces, nephews, and cousins. They are whom I fight for.

We woke a lot of people out of their sleep to see that we don’t live in post-racial society. We got to show people that what happened to us in Ferguson could just as easily happen to anybody in their cities. And some of those cities like Baltimore and Cleveland got to see it firsthand. From protesters traveling to the United Nations and discuss police brutality to going to the White House to talk to the President about demands and accountability we wanted from the police and the system in itself…this movement did that.

We’re making history. And so it continues…

(Photo: Diamond Latchison handout)

Diamond Latchison, 22, is an activist & organizer, born in Rockford, IL and raised in St. Louis, Mo. She’s been involved with the movement in Ferguson since the first week of protests in 2014. Latchison has organized & mostly taken the role as support, being involved in as many actions as she can. In her spare time, she likes to write, sing, watch online TV, and spend time with family and friends.

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Ferguson Anniversary: “People Thought We Were Crazy For Continuing To Protest…” was originally published on newsone.com

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7 thoughts on “Ferguson Anniversary: “People Thought We Were Crazy For Continuing To Protest…”

  1. • This black America web site as well as other black sites and black activists are a big part of the problem that blacks face with the police in this country. A very bad example is set when we instill hatred and defiance in our black youth and our black community because they are already vulnerably confused. If we have acknowledged and actually admit cops are trigger happy towards blacks why do we continue to send them on these deadly missions of defiance? When are we going to start sending the message of respect and compliance so we can LIVE to complain if we are treated unfairly by the police? Some cases of police encounters involving blacks are senseless and uncalled of; some encounters actually fit the category of racial profiling. On the other hand MOST of these interactions are a direct result of criminal activities by these young black men. The protests and complaints against law enforcement tend to forget or overlook the criminal element that initiated the interaction. When we march and protest, we send a clear message that we support the criminal activities and feel there is no need for these guys to change their attitudes and behaviors. Crime stats suggest blacks will not hesitate to harm or kill other blacks, if that’s the case, what kind of chance do we feel law enforcement has against us…….NONE. This is the reason they have become so trigger happy.

  2. Im glad to see change in fergueson.we have some black folk with jobs of importance but will they make a difference.only time will tell . violence and rioting isn’t the way.id like to see programs in the community that we ill help these young people prosper.

  3. People like Diamond continue to be untruthful and deceptive about the facts surrounding Michael Brown. She wants the lies to continue and stir up racial hatred, strife and deadly riots. This writer is a snake.
    ++ The truth is Michael Brown was not a good kid. Robbed a store, thugged an old man in a convenience store, tried to get a cops gun discharging the weapon in the cops car and later bull rushed him. The facts point to the obvious, Michael Brown committed suicide by cop and should not be a person we rally a cause around

  4. People like Diamond continue to be untruthful and deceptive about the facts surrounding Michael Brown. She wants the lies to continue and stir up racial hatred and strife. This writer is a snake.
    ++ The truth is Michael Brown was not a good kid. Robbed a store, thugged and old man in a convenience store, tried to get a cops gun discharging the weapon in the cops car and later bull rushed him. The facts point to the obvious, Michael Brown committed suicide and should not be a person we rally a cause around.

  5. reflections on said:

    704 americans have been killed by the police this year. Mappingpolicekillings.com.
    Psychologist Openly Admits He Trains Police Officers to Shoot First and Ask Questions Later
    Dr. Lewinski is training police to shoot before making a full assessment of the true threat.
    By Shaun King / Daily Kos August 9, 2015
    We should create a state to state traveling memorial for all the unarmed and mentally ill americans murdered by the police just like the traveling war will memorial. We must force the police unions and the Fraternal order of police to stop killing unarmed african americans and the mentally ill.

  6. MARK 8:36 on said:

    The justice department and the grand jury came to the same conclusion, Michael Brown was not murdered. So, yea it is crazy.

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