Hollywood Sanitizes Boston Busing Racist History

Hollywood Sanitizes Boston Busing Racist History

The James “Whitey” Bulger movie starring Johnnie Depp has swept into town and everyone is abuzz with the filming of “Black Mass” which recalls the good ole days of Boston where the stench of freshly killed bodies was just as powerful as the racism in the air.  In keeping with Hollywood’s tradition of the anti-hero, where the audience is compelled to feel sympathy/empathy for a character that in reality is despicable, the same is done for time periods of history.  Take for instance the nostalgic view of the 50’s in America or even deeper take a look at the way slavery is depicted in many movies, sure there are tragedies but overall them slaves was having a good ole time.

Now here we are in 2014 and Hollywood has developed a new found love affair with all things South Boston.  The rising star power of Ben Affleck, Matt Damon and Mark Wahlberg has made these gritty Boston stories very compelling to the mainstream with scrappy, down on their luck characters just trying to make a way in this crazy mixed up world.  In all of these Hollywood dramatizations, the one factor that has either been left out entirely or minimized is the undercurrent of racism in Boston not only at that time, but which continues presently to a less vocal degree.

In the movie “Black Mass” it recounts scenes outside of South Boston High School where local white residents were protesting the busing of Black children into “their” school and “their” neighborhood.  The Universal Hub showed this picture of the Hollywood set team’s re-enactment of the scene:

This is where Hollywood takes a trip down memory lane and makes a detour down the road of selective memory. The crowds at that time were not just there on an educational or transportation issue.  At the core of Boston’s anti-busing movement was a vicious foaming at the mouth racism.  The chants of the crowd, the signs, the graffiti did not just promote messages of stop busing, many of them read “Kill Niggers” “White Power” “Niggers Go Home” and other sentiments that would now be called “Hate Speech.”

The crowds of adults and teenagers actually attacked children while yelling racial epithets, threw bricks at buses and even met with the KKK.  Clearly this was not just some righteous anger at an injustice this is Down South Boss-town Massa-ssippi.

USA. Charlestown, Massachusetts. 1975. Reaction to forced busing.
READ THIS:  http://www.cjr.org/second_read/uncommon_ground.php?page=all

It is this embarrassing, yet enduring, part of Boston history that many would like to forget or gloss over, covered by yells of “One Boston” or “Boston Strong” and further glamorized and romanticized by Hollywood heart throb Johnny Depp playing the endearing “Whitey” who just happened to be a serial killing racist psychopath.  Just as “Whitey” will be humanized, so will the entire community and climate be taken down a notch in order to avoid depicting the feverish rabid racism that is much closer to the truth.  I mean, why ruin a good story with the truth?

Video from “Eyes on The Prize” pay close attention to 19:06 & 19:43 min mark

– Jamarhl Crawford
Publisher/Editor
Blackstonian.com

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  • Valerie owen

    My Mom worked at GillettevRazor Company during that miserable time period in Boston. The abuse the workers endured making their way across the street to the “T” to go home after a long days work is horrifying.. No prob getting ito work at 6am those losers would never wake up that early

  • James Murphy

    Greetings all from ole southie. At the time I just got out of the army as a dentist. It was the early seventies and the Vietnam conflict was winding down, the soldiers were returning some vertical , some horizontal
    in bags and many more vertical bUt walking wounded. My office was on dorchester street next to Bells market just down from St Augustines school. Everyday the visiting students would arrive in a line of busses accompanied by police motorcycles ! They would arrive in the morning and leave by 2pm passing by the Rabbit inn full of unhappy imbibers and assorted other patrons often including mr james Bulger doing his rounds. The residents didnt want this bussing on whole, and God help the black taxi driver daring to drop off a fare in lower southie. One black family ventured to move in to D street project , the ending was not good, another family moved into Old colony project and it didnt go well there either, the blacks learned how a baseball bat worked. Most of the families with enough resources enrolled their young ones in south Boston heights academy to avoid being busses. The high school was a battlefield in southie in those days after judge Garrety made his order. One day a black care giver wheeled her charge up dorchester street by my office with all the Rabitt inn patrons pelting the poor creature with abusive curses. I went out and gave her safe harbor in my office only to find the next morning KKK sprayed on my building. It was about as peaceful as Saigon circa 1973! A black kid whose family had the misguided judgement to move into the southie projects had his head caved in with a baseball bat. Meanwhile Louise day Hicks ran for and won a seat on the Boston school board and desided to send the blackies back where they belonged to whatever crap hole they crawled out of. She got plenty of votes in ole southie too
    All in all it was a monument to inhumanity

  • James Murphy

    Greetings all from ole southie. At the time I just got out of the army as a dentist. It was the early seventies and the Vietnam conflict was winding down, the soldiers were returning some vertical , some horizontal
    in bags and many more vertical bUt walking wounded. My office was on dorchester street next to Bells market just down from St Augustines school. Everyday the visiting students would arrive in a line of busses accompanied by police motorcycles ! They would arrive in the morning and leave by 2pm passing by the Rabbit inn full of unhappy imbibers and assorted other patrons often including mr james Bulger
    doing his rounds. The residents didnt want this bussing on whole, and God help the black taxi driver daring to drop off a fare in lower southie. One black family ventured to move in to D street project , the ending was not good, another family moved into Old colony project and it didnt go well there either, the blacks learned how a baseball bat worked. Most of the families with enough resources enrolled their
    Young ones in south Boston heights academy to avoid being busses. The high school was a battlefield in southie in those days after judge Garrety made his order. One day a black care giver wheeled her charge up dorchester street by my office with all the Rabitt inn patrons pelting the poor creature with abusive curses. I went out and gave her safe harbor in my office only to find the next morning KKK sprayed on my building. It was about as peaceful as Saigon circa 1973! A black kid whose family had the misguided judgement to move into the southie projects had his head caved in with a baseball bat. Meanwhile Louise
    day Hicks ran for and won a seat on the Boston school board and desided to send the blackies back where they belonged to whatever crap hole they crawled out of. She got plenty of votes in ole southie too
    All in all it was a monument to inhumanity