Race Relations

Stories about race relations in St. Louis and the United States

EDITORIAL | Healing only comes after the truth

Darlene Pendleton, who lives near the shooting, waved her fist over her head crying out “Hands up. Don’t shoot,” during a march protesting the shooting death of Michael Brown by a Ferguson police officer.

Amid the strife in Ferguson, the word "execution" has been prominent, as though Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson drove up to unarmed Michael Brown, who sat down in the street, raised his arms in surrender and was shot dead.

The version officials offer is that Brown struggled with Wilson and fought for Wilson's gun. As Brown walked away, police say, he turned and rushed Wilson, who shot and killed Brown to protect himself.

These are vastly different versions of the same event, an event in which the facts have been minimal.

Alderman French links activism to Catholic education

St. Louis alderman Antonio French has been perhaps the most visible person in the siege along West Florissant in Ferguson, seemingly being in every place at once.

As an activist/journalist, he has tweeted daily and nightly since Aug. 10, when protests, then rioting and looting began the day after the shooting death of unarmed Michael Brown by Ferguson officer Darren Wilson. At last check, he has 114,000 followers, more than a 10-fold increase from less than 10,000 at the start. As a result, he has gained the coveted checkmark of a verified Twitter user.

Apartment residents affected by Ferguson unrest

Lisa Johnston | lisajohnston@archstl.org | twitter: @aeternusphoto

Willie Mae Keel, a resident at St. John Neumann Apartments operated by Cardinal Ritter Senior Services, talked with building manager Cindy Asher after she received her daily Tootsie Roll treat from Asher. The senior apartment complex in Jennings is across the street from the command center set up by the Missouri Highway Patrol and St. Louis County Police during the Ferguson unrest.

The unrest in Ferguson has altered the residents' routines at senior apartments not far from the police command center and protests.

Street closings prevent them from shopping and keep relatives away. Residents spend more time indoors, especially at night, and blinds on the first floor are closed. A security guard is working extra hours. Residents complain of noise of sirens and booms from smoke and tear-gas grenades.

Archbishop Carlson's letter on Ferguson

Michael Brown was apparently unarmed when a Ferguson police officer shot and killed the 18-year-old on Saturday, Aug. 9. Protest continued on the seventh day after the shooting in the Ferguson neighborhoods surrounding the apartment complex where the shooting occurred.  Because of the unrest in Ferguson, Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon had declared a state of emergency and ordered a curfew for the city.  Malik Moody, age 11, stood as rain fell during a prayer service at the site of the death of Michael Brown. Hundreds of protesters attended the prayer vigil that concluded after a march to Greater St. Mark Family Church . Moody came with his mother and family in hopes of restoring the battered community through prayer.

On August 18, Archbishop Robert J. Carlson issued the following letter to the faithful in the Archdiocese of St. Louis:

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

We are all aware of the turmoil and tragedy our St. Louis community is experiencing. The residents of Ferguson, Missouri, are struggling to find peace in the chaos. As people of Christ, we are struggling to find direction in the unrest.

Votive Mass for peace and justice in Ferguson

At 5 p.m, the Archdiocese of St. Louis will live stream the Mass for peace and justice at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis. Check back here to watch the live stream.

GUEST COLUMNIST | A city smolders: No choice but to keep investing

Father Art Cavitt

In the days since the fatal shooting by police of Michael Brown in Ferguson, images in the media have been riveting and heartbreaking. There have been confrontations with police, destruction and looting of stores. And then there are those glimpses of fire, the raging fire.

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