Letter to President Barack Obama: Protect Peaceful Protesters in Ferguson, MO

Dear President Obama,

I’m writing to you because of what is happening right now in St. Louis. This morning (on November 26, 2014), a group protesting peacefully on public property was broken up with pepper spray and arrests, for no reason other than expressing their constitutionally guaranteed right to speak out. Leaders of this group are also being targeted by police simply for trying to organize for change in their community.

I will be honest, your speeches on the unrest gripping this country have been lacklustre, and I fear only serve to embolden those now using force to quell dissent. Make no mistake, this is not about maintaining law and order, this is about allowing citizens of this country to protest peacefully against injustice and inequality.

I implore on you to use the power of your office, and that of the Department of Justice, to act decisively to allow the peaceful, well-organized protesters in Ferguson and elsewhere to continue their work. Since you’ve been elected, I’ve watched a lot of people in the upper echelons of American society get a free pass to commit fraud and embezzlement on the American people, while those fighting for racial and economic justice at the bottom of the scale have been subjected to aggressive intimidation and the full force of the state against them.

Knowing what I do about your own story, I have to believe this does not sit well with you. This is a pivotal moment in the American story, and I sincerely, deeply, hope that you will step up to the occasion and act decisively on the side of people fighting for a better, more just America.