Ferguson: A Report from Occupied Territory

Ferguson: A Report from Occupied Territory

2015, Society  -   12 Comments
Ratings: 7.14/10 from 105 users.

The United States is currently in the midst of a national dialogue regarding racial profiling and police brutality; a dialogue triggered by the killing of Michael Brown in August of 2014. Ferguson: A Report from Occupied Territory goes to the frontline of this discussion, and offers invaluable insights from Ferguson residents for whom the burdens of discrimination and injustice are a daily fact of life.

People outside of Ferguson likely witnessed the aftermath of Michael Brown's murder, and the exoneration of the police officer who pulled the trigger, on television from the comfort of their homes. News reports were inundated with images of demonstrations, protests, looting and fires in the streets. From the outside, some people in the United States may have felt taken aback by the forcefulness of the outrage they were witnessing. But for many others who have experienced similar oppressions in cities across the country, these events were recognized as a justified battle cry for change and accountability.

These festering wounds are apparent from the opening minutes of the film, as Ferguson residents meet with local figures of government in a school gymnasium. The divide between the perceptions of those in charge, and the concerns expressed by citizens of color, could not be more profound. "You do not reflect the community that we live in," cries one mother to the largely white panel of officials. "Can you fathom your babies getting gunned down?"

The culture of racism in Ferguson, as it's portrayed in the film, is not always as obvious as a bullet from an officer's gun; it's often hidden in plain sight. It's apparent in the revenue hungry court systems where arrest warrants outnumber citizens by 10,000, the vast majority of which are issued to people of color. It expresses itself in the stories of one father who bemoans being pulled over by the police at least three times every month.

In addition to offering a searing commentary on the contributing factors behind the unrest in Ferguson, the film also pays tribute to the growing movement which is currently sweeping far beyond the city's borders. Protestors from all walks of life are joining together in record numbers, and are seeking to dismantle a system that they believe remains influenced by the residue of slavery.

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1 year ago

Another, bulls**t "mockumentary" about "white oppression". In reality, black on black crime is about 90%. Truth hurts.

4 years ago

Of all the deaths as a result of police shootings, none was handled worse by the press and leaders of the black community than the shooting death of Michael Brown by Darren Wilson. After the belligerent behavior of Brown in the store, the attempt by Brown to force himself into Wilson's police car to get the gun, and the later confrontation in the middle of the street where Brown charged Wilson, head down, in an attempt to mow down the police officer. That police officer shot Brown in the top of the head as the man was charging him. Darren Wilson shot Michael Brown in self defense. The forensics and the scene of the crime said it all and the jury acquitted Officer Wilson as they should have. Regardless of being in the right, Darren Wilson has been vilified and run out of town. No matter how many investigators and reporters print the truth of that night, people do not want to accept the truth. Michael Brown was a big, hulking bully and a trouble-maker; he ran into a cop stood his ground.

5 years ago

Mike Brown was a thug and would have killed the cop if he could have. He then would have used the gun he killed the cop with to commit other robberies and murders. STOP CANONIZING HIM! HE WAS A THUG! I guarantee none of the looters/rioters would want that trainwreck of a human living next door to them or dating their daughters or sisters.

5 years ago

Their are cops out there that I would worship the ground they walk on, truly. But most of them just want to milk the taxpayers. In my city, Davenport, Iowa, everyone knows to stay far away from the downtown area where the halls of "justice" prevail. For example, If you get lost in the maze of one ways and are driving slowly along looking at street signs, they swoop down and charge you with dui because you seem confused. When innocent people rise up as one and stop paying outrageous fines, this nonsense will end.

7 years ago

Ferguson is a sad story...on the one hand, the cops had racist behaviors. On the other hand, Michael Brown was a thug and Al Sharpton's media tried to hide his bullying the shop keeper while shoplifting before he attacked the cop...thank God that Darren Wilson survived Michael's attack. The media has amped up so much racism without a word of reverse racism...very dangerous situation on both extreme norms.

Philip Irvine
7 years ago

I'd like to read a transcript of the tin pot trial that cleared the cop. I'd like to see it sent out in masse to other judges and for them to render an opinion on the decision, you know, to get a measure of how farcical the American judicial system on a country wide basis. Then let us know the names of these officials, give us access to those who answer, to those who don't, and what color they are.
Any of you in Ferguson think that might bring some interesting data into play?

7 years ago

I am a white man living in St. Louis and all the police are doing is waiting it out.......then its back to business, 1 year later no more protests because the black people need to go to work and pay for these ridiculous fines..........they need a Millionaire to step up and donate to this movement or this slavery will continue, it will...........Greedy people are evil to its core and they don't care were they get the money. The rich will get it however they can. Its so true what that guy said about a dog kennel only imagine 25 people in a freezing cold concrete room made for 5 people, for sometimes weeks at a time with no shower and a single slice of bologna on two pieces of white bread twice a day, because their to poor to pay the fines that kept piling up.....and you wonder why they resort to selling drugs. I would to. I know the police are following orders from the real devils., but so were the Nazi's............when you oppress a group long enough they will fight back. I just wish it would get bigger instead of going away like the police want. BACK TO BUSINESS right cops.........You see the devils just got smarter by all this, they will teach them to not be to hasty about shooting them now, just so the money keeps flowing.

8 years ago

That J-walking bullshit would INFURIATE ME. Screw the Ferguson police, and all the neighboring municipalities. What they are doing is criminal. FINING SOMEONE FOR WALKING IS UNCONSTITUTIONAL. Absolutely ridiculous. If that was happening in areas with whites, there would be an uproar. I would be one of the ones contributing to it.

J Alexa
8 years ago

I meant the DoJ lawsuit was won when bias was proven. Sorry for typos. I have too much on my plate right now!

J Alexa
8 years ago

Was the white cop mormon or descended from mormons? The mormon doctrine claims that black people sinned in the pre-life, so god marked them by dark skin in this life so that "white and delightsome" people can be on their guard. Strange doctrine if mormons were against USA slavery. I think religious doctrine of all sorts are silly but influence people at a subconscious level. Even descendents carry ganetic material, as has been shown by studies of grandchildren born to starving family members which amounts to bias and prejudice. Bullies are often found in government work. Black, white... "public servants" have scant respect left them, per recent polls. Glad the cops are wearing cameras ow. I hope to know the truth of these things. I am female caucasian, and have suffered persecution by cops on multiple occasions, which I attribute to cultural biases by them., along with lack of cop training even in such areas as Americans with Disabilities. Federal lawsuit against the DOJ was lost when it was proven in court that mormons favored other mormons in hiring and promotion practices. I seem to recall mormons writing of expectation of a war with people of color, and that mormon males are required to own firearms for that time. the genetic fear DNA may have resulted in larger amygdalas (fear centers) in the brain, due to "persecution"... wait. The Mormon Meadows Massacre... and Pioneer Day celebrations.... Such a mess. USA is a racist country, I believe and so state. White males also create disparities in female wages and employment -- one example, Wal-Mart anyone? Now if the Koch brothers were of color much would change. Wait, Now I am talking of the 1% issue. USA has problems.

8 years ago

and here i thought wyoming was bad for police state and fines. i grew up there and was busted almost every week for something or other.. i moved away to Pittsburg 20 years ago and have never been pulled over since.