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Why the Fight for Better Transit is Part of the Fight for Racial Equity

There are two things that I want desperately: justice, and better public transit.
Police disembark from a bus as protesters lock arms to prevent the bus from moving, during a standoff with protesters after the not guilty verdict of Jason Stockley.
Police disembark from a bus as protesters lock arms to prevent the bus from moving, during a standoff with protesters after the not guilty verdict of Jason Stockley.Whitney Curtis/Reuters

I am a car-less person living in St. Louis, Missouri. I was car-less in 2014 during the numerous police shootings and protests that are now referred to as simply “Ferguson.” I am car-less now during the protests sparked by the acquittal of Jason Stockley, a former St. Louis police officer who in 2011 was recorded on a police dashboard camera saying something that sounds like, “I’m going to kill this motherfucker, don’t you know it” before fatally shooting Anthony Lamar Smith.

Being car-less during times of protest is doable, albeit challenging. I’ve taken public transit to protests and to town halls, but transit isn’t always a viable option. The day after Stockley was acquitted, there was a protest at the West County Chesterfield Mall. According to Google Maps, the recommended transit route from my apartment to Chesterfield Mall takes 1 hour and 31 minutes. It involves 23 minutes of walking and at least one transfer. I only live 17 miles from Chesterfield Mall.