Since the death of 18-year-old Michael Brown at the hands of Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson on August 9th, protests have raged in the St. Louis suburb. While they are no longer national news fodder with nightly showing of tear gas and rubber bullets being shot at protesters, demonstrations have continued in and around Ferguson. Generally, the demonstrations are limited to the Ferguson police station, with 50 to 100 protesters showing up and making their voices heard.
However, activists have pushed for further, more visible demonstrations outside of Ferguson. In early September, protesters attempted to shut down an interstate highway that ran through Ferguson. There have been multiple marches that have gone through Clayton, a nearby city that houses the St. Louis County courthouse. On Saturday, 50 protesters showed up at a performance by the St. Louis Symphony and performed a song, titled “Requiem for Mike Brown,’ during an intermission of the orchestra’s performance. While some concertgoers seemed upset by the display, the majority of the audience and the musicians showered the protesters with applause after they were done.
Protesters decided to show up Monday night to demonstrate outside of Busch Stadium. The St. Louis Cardinals faced the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game 3 of the National League Division Series. Before and during the game, a group of protesters, many of whom were representing activist groups from around the Ferguson area, chanted and marched in front of the stadium. A number of Cardinals fans confronted the protesters throughout the demonstration. Argus Radio, which is a volunteer-run local independent news station, provided a livestream of the clash between white Cardinals fans and the mostly black protesters.
As you can see, the ugly racism displayed by Cardinals fans is something that should bring shame upon the entire St. Louis community. There are a number of lowlights featured in this video. One of them more disgusting examples can be seen early on in the lengthy clip as a number of Cardinals fans switch a ‘Let’s Go Cardinals!’ chant into a ‘Let’s Go Darren!’ chant, referring to Officer Wilson. This was followed by a man calling one of the protesters a crackhead and complaining about his teeth. We also see at least one fan with a jersey on where he has taped on the back a sign that says ‘I am Darren Wilson.’
Near the beginning of the clip, we see a man yelling at the protesters. He then stares into the camera and claims that none of this would be happening if the protesters were out working instead. Later on, we see a woman state that ‘they’ wouldn’t have their freedom if it weren’t for people like her. Presumably, she was talking about white people freeing blacks from slavery. (I doubt she’d want to get into a debate about who actually put black people into chains.) After that little transgression, another woman starts yelling ‘Africa! Africa! Africa!’ This leads into someone else telling the protesters to pull up their pants and take off their caps. Earlier, we
Sadly, this isn’t shocking for anyone really familiar with the racial dynamics of the St. Louis metropolitan area. The vast majority of fans who attend Cardinals games are white. It is also safe to say that most of these fans live in areas of the metro area where the racial makeup is overwhelmingly Caucasian. The segregated nature of the area creates a lack of empathy within the white population of St. Louis. Ask a random white resident of St. Louis what they think about Ferguson right now, and you will hear comments similar, if not worse, than those captured on this video.