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    Posted August 14, 2014 by
    Ferguson, Missouri
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Black Lives Matter protests (2014)

    More from WeedOutHate

    Planting the Spirit of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Ferguson, MO


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     WeedOutHate said the mood was highly charged here. 'There were a few preachers there trying to calm the people down. They were very angry.' However, he says after asking older members about Martin Luther King, Jr., 'The protesters immediately re-directed their negativity and then felt that they had the power to transform things for the better.'
    - hhanks, CNN iReport producer

    After watching the protests on CNN yesterday morning from my home in Springfield, IL, I decided to drive down to Ferguson, MO. When I arrived on the scene, I saw 10-15 demonstrators holding signs from a parking lot in front of the Ferguson Fire House and Police Station.


    There was a reverend asking a few of the protesters to keep the angry rhetoric to a minimum. These people were angry and the atmosphere was highly charged. Some of the protesters were old enough to remember where they were the first time they heard Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. recite his dream to the Nation.


    Then I proceeded to say


    "In the 50 years since Dr. King gave us his Promised Land Vision, there are all too many weed seeds of hatred waiting to germinate within our consciousness, detaching us from our spiritual roots. If we fight hatred with hatred, then we play into the hands of the police and allow ourselves to remain powerless and to be kept in the dark.  On the other hand, if we challenge them to symbolically "weed out hate" together by tugging no symbolic weeds, this sets the proper foundation for setting all of us spirits free, allowing us to occupy the dream. This is a win-win situation for all concerned.


    Along with the signs, I handed out specially produced Sunflower Peace Seeds for the protesters to plant next spring.


    On July 18th, Springfield, IL mayor Mike Houston had issued a Weed Out Hate Proclamation, encouraging all Springfield citizens to root out symbolic weeds of hatred in solidarity with those suffering in the Middle East. City leaders got together and conducted a symbolic weed pull at the Lincoln Home National Historic Site. The National Park Service was there to chronicle the event.


    The seeds of peace that were first sown in Springfield, IL had now reached Ferguson.....

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