In August 2014, 18-year-old Michael Brown Jr. was fatally shot by white Ferguson cop Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri. The circumstances of Brown's killing further brought the issue of police brutality into the mainstream discussion, with Ferguson becoming a ground zero for protests that dominated the news cycle for months.
In the latest episode of Complex News Presents, the legacy of those calls to action is detailed through interviews with activists and others pointing to the urgency of the events of 2014 and how they relate to the police brutality discourse of 2019.
The people on the ground in Ferguson in the hours after Brown was killed "came out of their apartment buildings and they said, 'This is unjust,' and they took out their phones and they wouldn't stop talking about it," Washington Post journalist Wesley Lowery says of how those initial protests set the stage for the conversation to grow.
"They forced the eyes of the world to see Michael Brown's body on the ground, to see the tear gas, and to hear the rubber bullets, and to see the fires, and that is what made us all pay attention to Ferguson," he adds.
The full episode, which you can view up top, also features commentary from activist Johnetta "Netta" Elzie, Complex GM Cornell Brown, and more.
Michael Brown Sr. is expected to hold a press conference on the fifth anniversary of his son's death (Aug. 9), during which he will reportedly call for the reopening of the investigation.