ST. LOUIS – It was standing room only as hundreds of community members gathered in the Missouri History Museum for a raw and solution-based discussion on Monday.
They gathered for a Town Hall Meeting to talk about race, culture and community matters in Ferguson and across the country, in the aftermath of the death of Michael Brown.
"Ferguson, Missouri! America! Where do we go from here," asked nationally recognized author and activist Kevin Powell. Powell moderated the four hour town hall meeting, encouraging young adults to be among the first to speak to the crowd.
Some speakers used the Town Hall Meeting as a venue to vent about problems with police during protests long W. Florissant after Brown was killed by Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson two weeks ago.
One speaker who identified herself as 'Christine' told the crowd about an incident with an officer during a peaceful protest. She said, "when he pointed his gun at me, he told me that if I said anything else, see what's going to happen!" Christine and others to said talking about the incident helps her cope with the traumatic event.
"I want to see some action plans take place," another speaker, Jay Mitchell, announced. He was among attendees urging the crowd to begin taking extra steps to engage youth, supporting community based non-profits, developing civilian review boards, and speaking out against situations that seem unfair.
Speaker Elad Gross took the microphone to address the crowd. He said, "I hope we can use that as motivation to push forward in so many areas where we see an inequity of opportunity in the entire region."
Several speakers also challenged elected officials to become part of the path to change.
A speaker who identified himself as 'T.K.' posed a question to elected official. He said, "To Missouri leaders, Black and White…When are you going to say enough is enough and help us fight this, instead of fighting us?"
Organizers of the Town Hall Meeting say plan to continue the community discussions.