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'Freedom Square' March Will Mark 2nd Anniversary Of Michael Brown's Death

By Gwendolyn Purdom in News on Aug 9, 2016 4:07PM

On Aug. 9, 2014, the killing of unarmed teenage Michael Brown by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri shined a national light on the deep-rooted epidemic of violence against black citizens at the hands of law enforcement, ignited conversations about police brutality across the country and launched movements like Black Lives Matter. To honor Brown and the impact his death has had in the past two years, Chicago groups are planning a morning moment of silence, a sign-making event and an evening march Tuesday.

From 11:55 a.m. Tuesday through 12 p.m., the Black Lives Matter movement organizers will hold a national moment of silence in memory of Michael Brown, according to a post on Twitter. At 1 p.m., activists and community members are invited to join in a crafting event to make signs for a later march at the Freedom Square site on the city's West Side. Organizers are requesting supplies such as sheets, canvas and other materials.

Activists from the Ferguson-inspired Let Us Breathe Collective, the Black Youth Project 100 and other groups have occupied the North Lawndale site for 19 days to demonstrate against the infamous Homan Square site across the street, voice their opposition to the so-called "Blue Lives Matter" ordinance, and build community with free food, supplies and cultural exchanges. Following the afternoon crafting session, a march in Mike Brown's memory will take place from 7 to 9, according to Freedom Square's Facebook page.

In the post, Freedom Square organizers wrote:


Today marks the anniversary of Mike Brown's execution. The day that sparked a movement of love and beautiful rage. Today we too honor Sandra Bland, Korryn Gaines, Rekia Boyd, Sky Mockabee, Paul O'Neal, Jonathan Mills, Jessica Hampton. All those lost to state and community violence, you are etched into our memory. Today at FreedomSquare we will be holding intentional space to memorialize our fallen to the war the U.S. wages on black lives and black communities everyday.

The commemorative events come just days after Chicago activists took to the streets to protest the police shooting death of another black man, Paul O'Neal. The Chicago Police Department's release of several videos showing the killing stirred national outrage last week.

Chicagoist has reached out to Freedom Square organizers and others for more details on Tuesday's events and will update this post if we hear back.