Funeral held for Michael Brown

Funeral held for Michael Brown

Family and supporters of Michael Brown have celebrated the life of the black teenager slain by a white officer in Ferguson, Missouri, in a music-filled funeral service.

Civil rights activists, presidential aides and protestors were among those who gathered to farewell the teen in St. Louis, with calls for peace and police reforms.

Brown’s body lay in a black and gold casket at the Friendly Temple Missionary Baptist Church, topped with the St. Louis Cardinals baseball cap he was wearing when he was killed on Aug. 9.

Brown’s slaying has focused global attention on the state of race relations in the United States.

Police and demonstrators in Ferguson clashed nightly for more than a week, with authorities coming under fire for mass arrests and the use of heavy-handed tactics and military gear.

The teenager’s coffin was surrounded by photos of him as a child, graduating from school and smiling in his baseball cap.

In a eulogy for Brown, civil rights activist Al Sharpton demanded a fair and impartial investigation into the shooting and an end to police brutality.

“Michael Brown does not want to be remembered for riots,” Sharpton said. “He wants to be remembered as the one that made America deal with how we’re going to police in the United States.”

He also called on the black community to end the kind of street violence and looting that cast Ferguson in a negative light.

“We have to be outraged for our disrespect for each other,” he said.

“Some of us act like the definition of blackness is how low you can go.”

“Blackness has never been about being a gangster or a thug. Blackness was no matter how low we was pushed down, we rose up anyhow,” he said.

In differing accounts of Brown’s shooting, police have said he struggled with the officer who shot and killed him.

But some witnesses say Brown held up his hands and was surrendering when he was shot multiple times in the head and chest.

-NRN/Reuters

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Amy Whittaker
Amy Whittaker 1402 posts

Amy joined the NRN team in August 2011, before graduating from a B of Arts (Communication-Journalism)/B of Sports Studies from Charles Sturt University in December 2011.

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