ST. LOUIS (ST. Louis Post-Dispatch) – In the latest echo from last year’s Ferguson unrest, protesters invoking Michael Brown’s name burst into an auditorium at Harris-Stowe State University on Monday afternoon and briefly disrupted a Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration.
The protesters accused the university and clergy at the King event of being part of the “establishment,” and later got into a confrontation with Harris-Stowe students outside the venue, as police converged on the area.
The conflict — which was reminiscent of the internal Civil Rights Movement divisions that King himself had to navigate half a century ago — ultimately dissipated, and the King Day event resumed. There were no immediate reports of arrests.
Brown, 18, was killed Aug. 9 during an altercation with Ferguson police Officer Darren Wilson. The shooting, and the subsequent decision by a St. Louis County grand jury not to indict Wilson, prompted protests, some of which were violent and led to destruction and looting in the St. Louis region and around the country. They also raised issues of race and police tactics that are still being nationally debated.