In 2014, cities across the United States—like Ferguson, Missouri—erupted in protests, sometimes kindling with violence and property destruction over the police killings of Black people. On August 9, 2014, Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson shot and killed eighteen-year-old Michael Brown, and he left his lifeless body in the street for several hours. Outrage, anger, and pandemonium ensued as state troopers occupied the city. Amid their swirling fury, Ferguson residents asked themselves how they could become politically engaged in their community. The population in Ferguson is approximately 21,000; nearly 70 percent of residents are Black. Yet, at the time, only one Black person filled a city council seat out of six. Eight months later, the residents shook up the seats and elected two Black candidates, making the city council 50 percent Black. As Andrea Benjamin writes, the...

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