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Sunday, May 15, 2016


"The militarization of American police departments, on display during the Ferguson protests, has roots in numerous strategies for "dealing" with Black activist movements in the '60s and '70s. Few events symbolize the results of this warlike behavior more clearly—and scarily—than when, 31 years to this day, police bombed a West Philadelphia rowhouse occupied by the Black radical, back-to-nature group MOVE.
The police department had long considered MOVE the enemy. In the '70s, under the leadership of the notoriously racist police chief then mayor, Frank Rizzo, police regularly clashed with the group.
from PBS archival footage

MOVE was a polarizing force in their freshly integrated, left-leaning Powelton Village neighborhood due to their expletive-laced interruptions of community meetings, their recycling method of throwing garbage into their backyard, and their refusal to kill vermin. While quality-of-life complaints factored into the law enforcement response to MOVE, the group's protests against police violence and the incarceration of members most rankled authorities."
From: Colorlines

Yeah. MOVE was problematic as hell as neighbors go.

But only when you are black will the dropping two C4 bombs on the homes of these latter day hippies seem like a reasonable solution. And only when the mayor is black can you get away with dropping bombs, telling the fire department to "let it burn" then not have the story rise high enough to re-ignite a serious race discussion in this country.

This story was big when it happened. Don't get me wrong. But it didn't get to be the race story it should have been. The decision making that led to bombing a black neighborhood was not discussed for months and months on end from coast to coast like it should have been. 

By the way, a black mayor, Wilson Goode, wouldn't have tried this on stereotypical white trailer park no matter what the white folks were doing---if only in consideration for the other white people in trailers nearby.

But this was seen as a reasonable response in a black neighborhood, even a black middle class neighborhood like Cobb's Creek.

61 black middle class homes were destroyed in this police action  

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