In an unabashedly self-referential speech to supporters in Ferguson, MO Sunday, activist and MSNBC news host Al Sharpton pulled out his best James Brown and shouted for justice in the name of Michael Brown.
To the screams of approval of hundreds at a "Unity Rally" at the Greater Grace Church in Ferguson, Sharpton discussed the video released by police showing an alleged "strong arm robbery" conducted by Michael Brown moments before his confrontation with Officer Darren Wilson that led to his death. "There's a difference between robbing and shoplifting," Sharpton proclaimed to a standing ovation of screams and cheers by the capacity crowd.
"I'm no drive-by activist. We'll be here until justice is achieved," Sharpton promised.
"I know they're gonna smear Michael, they may even try to smear the parents," Sharpton said, before turning the attention to himself and the explosive video of the robbery.
"They're gonna call me names. But, I come from Brooklyn, a section called 'do or die, Bed Stuy.' I've been in the movement since I was a teenager... In all of my life I've never seen anything more despicable than while this mother and this father and the families haven't even had the time to bury their son, the police chief would release a tape trying to disparage his name. While his momma's still weeping, while the family hasn't even laid him to rest. How can the young folk of the city believe in a system that would try to spit on the name and character of a young man who hasn't even be buried?"
"The tape I saw," Sharpton continued. "A young man who may have been shoplifting. There's a difference between robbing and shoplifting. "