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Students Rally on Campus for Peace in Ferguson

Students Rally on Campus for Peace in Ferguson

By Sara Owen, Managing EditorPhoto by Sara Owen

More than 50 UNCP students gathered outside GPAC at 5:30 p.m. on Aug. 18 to participate in a demonstration known on social media as “Hands up, don’t shoot.”

UNCP student Jamal Rasool organized the rally, which people initially called a “protest.” He said he organized the event “to show that we are aware of what is going on in, not only in Ferguson but just in the United States in general.”

On Aug. 9, Michael Brown,18, was shot and killed by a police officer in Ferguson, Mo. The officer, Darren Wilson, was publicly identified on Aug. 15. According to USA Today.com, Wilson’s name was originally withheld due to death threats posted on social media.

The days following Brown’s death were filled with protest, both peaceful and violent. A candlelight vigil on Aug. 10 turned into a violent scene in Ferguson when protesters began to vandalize and loot businesses. More than 30 people were arrested and two officers were injured, according to Ferguson police.

At 4 p.m. on Aug. 11 Brown’s parents and their attorney held a press conference asking for an end to the violence in Ferguson. They asked for justice for their son.

"He was a good boy," said Brown's father, Michael Brown Sr. "He didn't deserve none of this. We need justice for our son.”

Brown was about to start his first semester of college when he was killed despite being unarmed. People all over the United States and the world have taken to social media to express their feelings about Brown’s death and the deaths of many young African American people like John Crawford.

Crawford was shot and killed by police while shopping in a Walmart in Beavercreek, Ohio, on Aug. 5.

Photo by Sara Owen. UNCP students gather to participate in the “Hands up, don’t shoot” demonstration on Aug. 18 outside GPAC.