Monday, August 25, 2014

Funeral services held for slain Black Ferguson, Missouri teen Michael Brown, Rev Al Sharpton delivers eulogy, thousands attend to pay respects

By Kathy Wray Coleman, editor-in-chief, Cleveland Urban News. Com and The Cleveland Urban News.Com Blog, Ohio's Most Read Online Black Newspaper and Newspaper Blog Kathy Wray Coleman is  a community activist and 20 year investigative journalist who trained for 17 years at the Call and Post Newspaper in Cleveland, Ohio. (www.clevelandurbannews.com) / (www.kathywraycolemanonlinenewsblog.com)


The casket of slain Ferguson, Missouri teen Michael Brown


Slain Missouri teen Michael Brown
ST LOUIS, Missouri- Funeral services were held on Monday for Michael Brown, the Black teen slain two and a half weeks ago in Ferguson, Missouri by police officer Darren Wilson, whom witnesses say gunned him down when he was surrendering with his hands up. The case is currently before a county grand jury on whether to charge Wilson, who is White, with crimes relative to the unprecedented shooting.
Some 4,500 people packed Friendly Temple Missionary Baptist Church in St Louis, Missouri for Brown's home going celebration, including the teen's parents and other family members, some  area and state dignitaries , Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), Martin Luther King III, Bernice King, and the Rev. Jesse Jackson.

It was a day of peace and tranquility where protesters took a break, after Brown's father, Michael Brown Sr., had asked that the family be respected for the upcoming funeral. What happens next, since Brown Jr has been ceremoniously laid to rest, remains to be seen. All indications suggest that it ain't over yet. 

Family members of some other young unarmed Black men from across the country killed by White people or White cops,  including the parents of Trayvon Martin, and the mother of Sean Bell, were there too. 
Michael Brown Sr., the father of
slain teen Michael Brown
Michael Brown's mother, Leslie McSpadden


Celebrities in attendance include Snoop Dog, P. Diddy and Spike Lee.


The Rev Al  Sharpton delivered the eulogy
 at funeral services for slain teen Michael Brown
The articulate Rev Al Sharpton delivered the eulogy and said that Brown's death represents a young Black life gone too soon.

Sharpton said that the Black community has been victimized by police not only in Ferguson, a suburb of St. Louis, but also across America. 

"America, it's time to deal with policing, we are not the haters, we are the healers,"' said Sharpton 

Brown family attorney Benjamin Crump, who also represented the Trayvon Martin family, told the audience that Black men gunned down by police are treated as second class citizens. 

"We will not accept three-fourths justice," said Crump, "We demand equal justice for Michael Brown Jr."

The fatal shooting has unleashed riots in the majority Black city of Ferguson, and protests in over 50 cities across the country including in New York, Washington D.C. and Cleveland, Ohio, a largely Black major American city also dealing with the deadly shooting of two unarmed Blacks by 13-non-Black police officers slinging 137 bullets.

Wilson is currently on administrative leave with pay. Protesters
want him arrested and prosecuted. Ferguson police, and Wilson's supporters say the officer acted in self defense.

Only four of Ferguson's 58 police officers are Black, and it shows. 

President Obama, who sent three White House officials to the funeral on Monday,  has called for calm, the National Guard is trying to keep the peace after days of violent protests and clashes with protesters and police in Ferguson, and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who is conducting his own independent investigation, visited the city on Wednesday.  (www.clevelandurbannews.com) / (www.kathywraycolemanonlinenewsblog.com)