PHILIP A. FARRUGGIO—During their trip down south, the pair gets stopped one night during a heavy rain by two local cops. With guns drawn the older of the two deputies shouts to the driver, Tony Lip, to get out of the car in the pouring rain. He then yells to his partner to get the passenger, the black musician, out also. The young deputy states that there is no need to have the passenger get out, but is shouted down by his partner. As Doc Shirley, the musician , and Tony Lip are standing in the monsoon, Tony Lip asks the deputy why they were pulled over. He is told, at gunpoint, that there is a ‘ Sundown ‘ rule in that town which forbids ‘Niggras ‘ from being out past sundown. The deputy questions why Tony Lip is driving a ‘ Niggra’ and what they are doing in his town. When the deputy finds out that Tony Lip is Italian he tells Tony that by being Italian he is a ‘ Half a Niggra’, whereupon Tony Lip floors him with one punch… and the pair are arrested.
DAVE TELL—While these variations on the finer points of Till’s story may seem like minutiae, to Glendora residents they are matters so weighty that it sometimes seems as if the very future of the town hinges on where Till’s body was dropped in the water and what fan weighed it down. In 2010, the Mississippi Development Authority sent a team of economic development experts to Glendora. Their charge was to devise a plan to rescue the town from poverty – a tall order. The team struggled to find solutions. Aside from the unrealistic suggestion that the town turn the snake-infested land along the bayou into “riverfront property,” the development authority’s only other proposal was that Glendora capitalize on its connection to the Till murder. More commemoration, they said, would bring tourists; tourism would beget economic development.
- ABOMINATIONSAMERICAN EXCEPTIONALISMAMERICAN STUDIESRACE/ETHNICITYRACISM
The sickness of racism is gripping substantial sections of the upper-middle class and dominant sections of the political establishment, academia and official cultural commentary. The top 10 percent of society, immensely jealous of the vast wealth piled up by the financial oligarchy yet fearful of the masses, sees in racial and identity politics a way of pursuing its social interests not only against those above, but, more importantly, against those below.
BILL WILLERS—Mortally wounded, King was taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital where, surprisingly, “a large presence” of military intelligence officers had taken positions well before the shot was fired. More surprisingly, the hospital’s head surgeon, Breen Bland, accompanied by two men in suits, entered the hospital room in which King was being attended by medical staff. Bland is quoted as shouting, “Stop working on the nigger and let him die” and then ordering everyone out of the room. Personnel hearing the sound of men clearing their throats lingered behind and reported seeing Bland and his two accomplices spit on King, after which Bland smothered King to death with a pillow.