FERGUSON, MO (KPLR) - Yet another celebrity traveled to the embattled city of Ferguson. Residents weighed in on the visit from actor Hill Harper.
“You can make your mouth say anything,” Sharon McGee mimicked open and shut lips with her hand. “But actions speak louder than words.”
She lived just 150 feet from where 18-year-old Mike Brown died on August 9, 2014. A white Ferguson police officer shot the unarmed black teen. Since then, a stream of celebrities like rappers Nelly and J. Cole and Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey have been to Ferguson.
“We gotta stand up for what’s happening here, but nationally,” a resident shook hands with the latest visitor, actor and activist Hill Harper.
McGee took the opportunity to ask Harper for financial help with children's programs and the neighborhood watch volunteers.
“He said if they need uniforms where everybody can know them separately from the regular residents, he will provide that.”
“I think at the moment,” said Alive Magazine editor Attilio D’Agostino. “Everybody who wants to come down and show solidarity with the people of Ferguson should do just that.”
From the near constant rally activity of North County to the relative peace of Downtown St. Louis, Hill Harper then went to Tapers Barber and Beauty Salon.
Harper met with college students, city aldermen, a psychotherapist from Washington D.C. and residents from all over the St. Louis area. He asked someone to take notes on the concerns expressed by the crowd of one white resident, several black women and mostly black men. He asked questions until there were no more. He then promised to return.
“Invest my time, invest my money. Invest whatever I can do to help folks, because we are all in this together.”
He also promised his connections to Ekundayo Azubuike, a student working to create agriculture jobs for African-Americans.
“As a leader, it is your job to keep these folks engaged,” Harper said to the young man. “But, to continue to build.”
“You can get things done being positive instead of negative,” McGee said. “And that’s what they’ve been doing and I thank God for that.”