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What we have today is a generation, including mine, built on apathy, where hashtag campaigns and up-to-the-minute graphics are how we show our displeasure with acts that disturbs us all.

We have become a nation where, for most of us, protest amounts to sitting in front of a laptop and television. Therefore, real, systemic change is not happening anytime soon. It seems like we’re regressing.

While organizations like the Dream Defenders have done a very good job of keeping our issues relevant, only a select few seem to be listening.

Still, even with my world-weary view, I understand that we cannot stop being advocates for change. It was Anne Frank, the Jewish teenager whose diary was found and published after she was killed in Nazi Germany, who said: “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”

The death of Trayvon Martin galvanized a country, for as long as it was in the news. Yet George Zimmerman is free, Marissa Alexander is being retried for firing a warning shot to back down an abusive husband, and Stand Your Ground and the Castle Doctrine  are still laws of the land in Florida, Pennsylvania and a host of other states.

While I know that African-Americans are not the only ones impacted by lack of education, poverty, police brutality, unemployment, mass incarceration, and de facto educational and residential segregation – we seem to be the only ones affected by these developments on a mass scale.

What I do know is that change in this country was built on civil disorder and an obvious disregard for the law. Change was made by people who were not afraid of causing a good deal of social strife, people who provoked disorder on a national scale, people who showed disregard for racist laws and challenged the existing social order.

Those are the people who showed up this weekend in Ferguson. They are the same kind of people who have been at the forefront and on the front lines of the struggle that allowed us many of the freedoms we now take for granted.

If only we all felt this way, then change would once again, have no choice but to come.

Zack Burgess is an award winning journalist, who is the Director/Owner of OFF WOODWARD MEDIA, LLC, where he works as a Writer, Editor and Communications Specialist. Twitter: @zackburgess1

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A Change Is Gonna Come To Ferguson  was originally published on

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