Senate leader speaks about Ferguson healing
November 26, 2014
To the editor:

“On November 24, 2014, the St. Louis region learned the results of the grand jury’s investigation into the events surrounding the use of deadly force by a Ferguson police officer. While this decision of the grand jury did not satisfy everyone intently watching, it appears the facts of the case were gathered in a thorough, transparent and timely manner and were thoughtfully studied by a jury of local citizens over the course of many weeks. We must respect both their work and the legal system itself that provides for citizen involvement in such serious matters. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all those affected by this tragedy.

Now it is time to pick up the pieces and begin to rebuild. The true measure of a people’s strength is how they rise to master challenging moments when they arrive. Everyone in the region has a responsibility to participate in this recovery. Now is the time for people of good will to come together in a spirit of humility and begin to thoughtfully examine the underlying issues troubling our region. People of differing points of view must be able to engage in honest dialogue, making their voices heard without fear or intimidation, all the while ascribing the very best of motives to those with whom they disagree.

This is not a time for an “us” versus “them” mentality. When that approach is replaced by thoughts of “we” as a community, “we” as neighbors and “we” as a state, progress can’t be far behind. It is time to work together in a peaceful manner to move our community forward. It’s time to move past the problems and work towards solutions. My hope is that everyone will take this Thanksgiving holiday to reflect on all that we share as human beings created in the very image of our Maker and that this thought will foster within us a spirit of understanding and cooperation.”

Tom Dempsey, Missouri Senate Majority Leader (R-St. Charles)

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