As students from Washington University and St. Louis University, we seek to amplify not only our voices but also the voices of our community in the call for justice for Mike Brown. We understand the position and influence of universities in the St. Louis community, and we will hold these institutions and ourselves accountable in this fight for justice. As young people and students, we see this as a fight we must join.
On Monday August 25th, students at St. Louis University and Washington University will walk out of classes to take a stand in the Mike Brown case and the underlying systemic injustices people of color face. At 12:10pm, Washington University students will gather and march from the Brookings archway, and at 1:00pm, St. Louis University students will gather at the clock tower on main campus.
We will walk out of class and gather on our campuses today to call for justice in the extrajudicial killing of Mike Brown. We march in silence in memory of Mike Brown, and through our silence, we speak our minds in the fight for local and global justice. As members of the St. Louis community, we come not as Washington University students or St. Louis University students but as citizens of St. Louis.
We intend this event to draw attention to the underlying issues that led to the death of Mike Brown and many others. Racial profiling and police brutality are practices that people of color across the country experience, and we refuse to tolerate it any longer.
While a candid and honest dialogue on race is vital in this country, those dialogues become stagnant without relevant and purposeful action. We expect the Saint Louis University and Washington University communities to actively engage with the greater St. Louis area by participating in local rallies, panels, protests, and grassroots events. We ask individuals to learn their rights in order to recognize and combat the abuses of power seen in those we pay to protect us.
We fully support the demands of the local community as listed by organizations such as the Organization for Black Struggle, Missourians Organizing for Reform and Empowerment, and others. We call for a joint effort between the Boards of Trustees of Washington University, Saint Louis University, and other local institutions for higher learning to push for these demands.
We wish to support the Brown family while affirming the truth that this is part of a greater struggle against the injustice and oppression people of color face in the United States and the world. By gathering, we memorialize yet another unjust killing of a young black man and make clear our stance that students everywhere must act. We are engaging the issues of our day by stepping away from our computer screens and textbooks and transforming our thoughts into action. Today, we pay respect to the many lives extinguished by unnecessary police violence. Tomorrow, we will continue in the fight for justice and work to reaffirm the value of every single human life.
David Dwight IV
Jonathan Pulphus, Jr.
Christopher Walter, Jr.