Strong Opinion or Informed Opinion? What Do You Know About Baltimore?

The recent events in Baltimore do not reflect an isolated event; rather; the frustration that manifested in protest is the product of a number of sociopolitical and historical considerations. Generating a comprehensive analysis requires pulling from a number of disciplines, many of which are beyond the expertise of most educators.

A few days ago I happened upon a veritable treasure trove of resources, which I now share with you. Unfortunately, the humble saint that culled these resources together did not provide a name, as I imagine recognition was not her/his primary aim.  I have not read read each and every resource, but a cursory eyeballing reveals a great number of valuable resources.


I.  Reminders from Ferguson

“When Rioting is Rational”

“In Defense of Black Rage”

“In Ferguson, the Violence of the State Created the Violence of the Street”

Resisting State Violence: Justice or Just Us?

Bell Hooks “Killing Rage”

II.  What’s up with Baltimore?

‘Two Reports Illustrate the Paradox of Baltimore”

“A Tale of Two Baltimores” (2011)

“The Brutality of Police Culture on Baltimore”

“Baltimore Youths Have it Worse Than Those in Nigeria”

“Ten Shocking Facts About Baltimore”

“Baltimore Uprising in Context”

“In Baltimore, We’re All Freddie Gray”

“Sun Investigates: Undue Force”

“David Simon in Baltimore’s Anguish” (interview)

III.  On “Riots” and Protest  

“We Have a Right to Be in the Streets for Freddie”

“The Dominant White Response to Baltimore Shows Why Black Residents Are Justified in Their Anger”

“Baltimore: The Fire Next Time”

“Baltimore’s Violent Protestors Are Right”

(please note: the title of the blog where this was originally posted is a political re-appropriation of “faggot”)

“Nonviolence as Compliance”

Historical Perspective: The Kerner Commission Report on “Riots,” 1968

“A History of Rap Songs Against Police Brutality”

“Silence on Black Female Victims Weakens Fight Against Police Brutality”

“The Baltimore Rebellion”

Gang Members: We did not make truce to harm cops

“Go Home, David Simon: Without Justice in Baltimore, There Can be No Peace” (a critique of SImon’s blog post criticizing “rioters”

“What’s Happening in Baltimore Didn’t Just Start with Freddie Gray”

IV.    On the Bigger Picture

“Stealing a Bag of Potato Chips and Other Crimes of Resistance”

“The Hyper-Criminalization of Black and Latino Male Youth in the Era of Mass Incarceration”

“Why Don’t American Cities Burn Very Often?”

“Who Killed L.A.: A Political Autopsy”

“The Case for Reparations”

“Segregation Now: The Re-segregation of America’s Schools”

“The Night Chicago Burned”

“A Herstory of the #BlackLivesMatter Movement”

V.   Movies

Race: The Power of an Illusion – Episode 3 – “The House We Live In”

Broken on All Sides: Race, Mass Incarceration, and New Visions for Criminal Justice in the U.S.

The House I Live In

Hard Times at Douglass High: A No Child Left Behind Report Card

Cracking the Codes: The System of Racial Inequality

The Black Power Mixtape: 1967-1975

Revolution ‘67

Crips & Bloods: Made in America

The Throwaways:

Eyes on the Prize: Two Societies

VI.   Books

The Hero’s Fight: African Americans in the Shadow of the State by Patricia Fernández-Kelly (twenty year ethnography of Baltimore)

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness

Code of the Street: Decency, Violence and the Moral Life of the Inner City

When Work Disappears, the World of the New Urban Poor     

The Truly Disadvantaged: The Inner City, the Underclass, and Public Policy

More Than Just Race: Being Black and Poor in the Inner City

Black Liberation and Socialism

American Apartheid: Segregation and the Making of the Underclass

Making the Second Ghetto: Race and Housing in Chicago, 1940-1960

Sweet Land of Liberty: The Forgotten Struggle for Civil Rights in the North

Into the Fire: African-Americans Since 1970  

Race Rebels: Culture, Politics, and the Black Working Class

The Political Economy of Racism

How Racism Takes Place

Are Prisons Obsolete?

Not In My Neighborhood: How Bigotry Shaped a Great American City (Historical overview of Baltimore, especially around housing and segregation)

Queer (In)Justice: The Criminalization of LGBT People In The United States

VII.  News/Memes/Videos from Baltimore

10,000 Strong Peacefully Protest In Downtown Baltimore, Media Only Reports The Violence & Arrest of Dozens

The Roots of Baltimore's Violence