Politics & Policy

An ‘Impromptu Street Festival’ Turns into a Riot in Ferguson

Rioters loot a Ferguson business on Friday evening. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Friday night started festive, but after midnight, cops did nothing to stop the start of looting.

Ferguson, Mo. — The protests in Ferguson started off not somber or angry on Friday night, but instead celebratory. Then, as the night wore on, the protests grew violent and looters ransacked local stores.

Michael Powers, a man designing and passing out signs at the protest tells National Review Online he thought the mood had changed since earlier in the week, when he had been arrested. “It’s turned into a impromptu street festival with a parade, we got music, we got food,” he says. “It’s awesome. It’s night and day.”

Protestors gathered at a QuikTrip convenience store and gas station that was destroyed by looters earlier in the week to dance, chant, and listen to music.

Some people appear to be trying to clean up in the aftermath of the protests amid heavy rain on Saturday morning, but the events of last night suggest Ferguson has a long way to go before peace and order are restored.

“In the future, when something like this happens again, and I didn’t say, if I said when, because it will happen again,” protester Adrian West tells NRO, “Him [pointing to another African-American man] or myself could be dead before the weekend’s over for the same reason and that’s been going on in Ferguson for a long time.”  

— Ryan Lovelace is a William F. Buckley Jr. Fellow at the National Review Institute.

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