I went to Ferguson, MO, to the Farmers’ Market last Saturday because I had signed up months before to sell my books at the Author Fest on this Saturday. To say I didn’t have a little concern would be a lie. My concern was not the people or the police of Ferguson. My concern was the outsiders still lingering around, causing trouble. The reason I know I had a little bit of worry is because even at 43 years old, I didn’t tell my parents where I was going that morning. I just said a Farmers’ Market. I considered taking my daughter with me at one point, but then my husband offered to keep her at home, and I agreed after some protestors had tried to shut down Highway 70 earlier in the week. But still, I really wasn’t worried. I know people who live in Ferguson, and they assured me all was fine. I knew there were people selling I LOVE FERGUSON t-shirts, and it seemed as if the community was pulling together to get past all the bad news and find solutions to the problems that the Michael Brown shooting brought into the international media. Okay, so here’s what happened.
Here’s a photo of my little booth:
Around 10:00 am, I think, this started happening:
And that brought the police! All in all, it was very peaceful, as I reported already on Facebook, where you can watch my entire video if you want. But to be honest, I was a little freaked out. I think this is mostly because of everything we heard on the news about things getting out of hand and quickly. I also wasn’t sure about the Farmers’ Market being the place for this protest. When it closed, and they did stay open until noon and I did actually sell books once this started, the protestors went to the sidewalk with their signs, continued their chants. I guess I felt like the protestors were hurting their own community by doing this at the market–people who lived in the area and were trying to do something positive for the community were at the market, and I just wonder how many of the protestors were actually from Ferguson once again?
I’ve had a few people ask me why did I even go. Someone said I was brave. I don’t feel that way at all. Why did I go? I think I went to show my support to a situation that I think got completely out of hand, to show that we can’t let outsiders scare us and make us stay home. I am IN NO WAY comparing these protestors to terrorists, but isn’t that the same feeling we got after 9/11? Some people flew as soon as possible because they weren’t going to let the terrorists scare us into staying home. It’s the same attitude. Would I have gone to the Farmers’ Market on August 16? Not sure about that, but someone at the market said that day was packed, showing support for the Ferguson citizens.
We can only start with “The Man in the Mirror.” I can’t change anyone else’s attitude or behavior. I can just try to live what I believe, and right now, I believe all citizens of Ferguson are tired of the media and protestors and just want to work on the issues in their community together.