Videos show nationwide protests over Ferguson decision Monday night
Plenty of people were outraged that police officer Darren Wilson was not indicted Monday night in the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown — and the reaction will be preserved for posterity.
After the announcement, protesters took to the streets for a night of demonstrations that police described as worse than any others seen since Wilson shot and killed Brown in Ferguson, Mo., in August. Businesses were looted, cars were set on fire and buildings were destroyed.
Brown's mother, Lesley McSpadden, was standing outside the Ferguson police headquarters when she heard the grand jury's decision not to indict Wilson and broke down in tears.
“They still don’t care, they never gonna care,” she said.
Similarly, protesters in the Shaw neighborhood of St. Louis chanted, “Hands up, don’t shoot,” at police wearing riot gear.
This phrase has become synonymous with the protest movement, based on witnesses' statements that Brown had his hands in the air in a gesture of surrender before Wilson pulled the trigger.
The same night, rapper Killer Mike gave an impassioned speech in support of protesters during a local concert onstage at the Ready Room in St Louis.
“I would like to say: Rest in peace, Michael Brown,” he told the crowd. “I would like to give all thoughts and prayers to all those out there peacefully protesting. I also give thoughts and prayers for the people who could not hold their anger in, because riots are only the language of the unheard.”
The Atlanta-based musician choked up while discussing the fear he has for his sons, ages 12 and 20. His fans told him via Twitter that his emotional speech had brought them to tears.
A 25-year-old videographer from Colorado named Brandon Serna posted a tearful video online commenting on the aftermath of the announcement.
“I know it’s bad, but I promise you it’s not their fault,” he said to the camera.
Just before the announcement, he had posted a more hopeful video showing the crowd and his call for “no hatred, no negativity and no evil.”
The outburst of anger was not limited to the St. Louis area. Thousands of protesters marched through downtown Oakland, chanting “Ferguson! Ferguson!” well into the early morning hours.
Videos from witnesses show fires burning in the streets and demonstrators marching down Interstate 580, blocking traffic for several hours.
In the nation’s capital, about 300 protesters gathered outside the White House, chanting, “Black lives matter!”
The demonstrators, many of whom wore sweatshirts for D.C. colleges, remained peaceful as speakers addressed the crowds with megaphones, reported WRC-TV.
There were also a slew of protests in New York City where, yet again, video footage shows the tension between the officers and protesters.
Hundreds of protesters blocked traffic as they walked over the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge, which stretches across the East River. Others marched northward through Manhattan from Union Square.
Crowds also gathered in Times Square, and a protester threw fake blood onto NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton, as seen on social media.
As the sun rose over Ferguson, it showed the toll that the demonstrations had taken on the city, from the wrecked cars to the leveled buildings.
But for the people speaking their minds Monday night, the true loss had nothing to do with property — it had to do with a human life.