"Baltimore had always been seen as an explosive city, hypersensitive to the shifting currents of politics. The present crisis was no exception. While most Baltimoreans felt that Lincoln should keep his hands off the South, there was also a smaller contingent of Confederate zealots there who were more than willing to go to war over it. Sending Northern troops through their hometown was like putting a lit match to a powder keg."
The Baltimore Riot of 1861, also known as the Pratt Street Riots, underline Maryland's complex and often tragic part
in the US Civil War. [more inside]
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing
on Mar 8, 2013 -
"You feel euphoric you know. Because it's one of the best buzzes personally I've had in my life. Better than any drug. And you know it was just that....It was a feeling of standing up straight against an institution that's been historically has always been brutal, wicked and bad mind towards young people especially young black people."
In collaboration with the LSE, the Guardian's Reading the Riots
project has used a mixture of quantitative and qualitative methodologies to explore the causes of England's summer of disorder.
posted by roofus
on Dec 5, 2011 -
Collective violence, extending from riots to warfare, presents a challenge to our ordinary understanding of free will. Actions that would rarely be taken by an individual on their own seem to be embraced when supported by a larger group. This can occur in societies ranging from the communist regime of Soviet Russia to the capitalist free market of modern day England. Given this commonality, perhaps the collective violence of a riot can be best understood as a biological event in which evolved cognitive responses encounter a unique environmental threat. And if that is the case, do individuals caught up in such incidents have any choice in the matter?
Freedom to Riot
: an evolutionary perspective on collective violence.
posted by Rumple
on Sep 6, 2011 -
Researchers at the New England Complex Systems Institute
say they've uncovered a pattern that triggers riots wherever it's found. What is that pattern? The price of food
. When it rises to a certain level, social unrest & violence are soon to follow. According to their calculations the food price index is due to peak in August of 2013, assuming no corrective action is taken. The original paper is here
posted by scalefree
on Aug 21, 2011 -
You may have heard about Romeo Agents
, the male employees of the East German Ministry for State Security
(also known as MfS or Stasi). They were unleashed on female federal employees in West Germany, with whom they began long-term relations and then began using as sources.
That tactic has apparently been used in the United States as well; David Cay Johnston writes about the real legacy of Daryl Gates
, the former chief of the LAPD. Gates died Friday. [more inside]
posted by krautland
on Apr 17, 2010 -
Before 1969, the city of Zap
was best known as the punch line of a joke about three towns in North Dakota that sounded like Rice Krispies—Zap
, and Mott
. But when student body president Charles "Chuck" Stroup
at North Dakota State University
needed an alternative to Fort Lauderdale while stuck in North Dakota for spring break, he enlisted the help of some student journalists
at the Spectrum
newspaper to promote the "Zip to Zap,"
an event that became the only "official" riot
in the history of North Dakota. The tiny coal mining town originally looked forward to the impromptu "Zip" festival, which had so much advance buzz that the Wham-O
toy company created a toy called Zip Zap
in honor of the imminent event. Unfortunately, after throngs of students descended on Zap, the only two bars in town quickly ran out of beer, and the North Dakota National Guard
was called into extinguish the bonfire, beer brawls, and riot that ensued. For more info about about how the "Zip to Zap" fit in context with the 1960s zeitgeist, look here
, and here
posted by jonp72
on Nov 20, 2007 -
Spin, exposed live and wriggling.
In 1995, Brian Springer released an hour-long documentary film comprised of incredibly revealing moments caught from raw satellite feeds. Not only do we get to hear the spin-doctor coaching candidates received during various commercial breaks, there are also some amazing moments such as Larry King suggesting to Clinton that Ted Turner could "serve him," an anchor suggesting to her expert that during the L.A. riots his frank diagnosis of inner-city hope is "too obtuse," and the exclusion and exclusion of Larry Agran from the 1992 Democratic primaries — and, really, there's much more.
posted by WCityMike
on Jul 4, 2006 -
The Wilmington Race Riot of 1898
(some call it the Wilmington Massacre
), occurred on November 10, 1898, when a white "mob forcibly expelled from the city black and white leaders opposed to Conservative Democratic rule and white supremacy. It used the threat of paramilitary forces -- in the only recorded coup d'etat to occur on American soil
-- to remove from office at gunpoint a duly elected city government, which included three black aldermen." North Carolina just released an extensively researched and documented report
on the riot and its effects. The riot helped ensure years of Jim Crow laws and a white supremacist government. [MI]
posted by marxchivist
on Dec 19, 2005 -
The French Democracy
is a short film on the recent riots in France. It was made by Alex Chan
, Parisan-born but of Chinese parents, to "to correct what was being said in the media, especially in the United States" about the riots. He used a techinique
--using a video game engine to make his movie.
posted by LarryC
on Dec 16, 2005 -
Joblessness is a major motivating force of these riots, which is why the politicians and the press turn endlessly around the question of job creation in the banlieues. [...] An injection of vigorous enterprise, a big deregulating kick, and racial discrimination would evaporate in the tremendous, creative release of market forces. No race riots in an untrammelled market economy: that’s what Sarkozy really means. It’s an ingenious, high-pressure sales pitch for the ‘Anglo-Saxon model’ – indeed, it’s bordering on blackmail.
Jeremy Harding in the London Review of Books
goes among the arsonists in Paris and offers some insights on the economic factors and political consequences of the riots.
posted by funambulist
on Dec 3, 2005 -
Why Paris Is Burning
Officially, the French state doesn't recognize minorities, only citizens of France, all of them equal under the law. But that republican ideal has seemed especially hollow over the past week as the children of impoverished, largely Muslim immigrants from the Maghreb and sub-Saharan Africa fought running battles with police throughout the banlieues, or suburbs, to the east and north of the French capital...
posted by Postroad
on Nov 5, 2005 -
Unoticed news: riots in Belfast.
I've been surprised that I haven't seen much reporting on the riots in Belfast, especially since it is the second night
of rioting. The lack of coverage is probably due to the fact that no one has yet to be killed
coupled with the ongoing coverage of both Katrina
and John Roberts nomination.
What I find interesting about this is that these riots seem to be the cumulation
of increasing sectarian
violence. apparently, this is not the first riot to happen in Northern Ireland this year
. The Guardian has the best coverage of the events, and points out that both the pressures and rewards
of the peace process have been placed and (apparently) granted more toward the Republicans than the Loyalists. The rioting also comes after the "Love Ulster"
propaganda campaign started distributing pamphlets all over the province.
This also comes as there is an ongoing feud
between Loyalist groups. This apparently paused when the Northern Ireland
football (soccer) team beat the British team on their home turf.
Disclaimer: I am an American with some Irish extraction and tend to have very little sympathy for the Loyalist cause.
posted by Hactar
on Sep 11, 2005 -
Riots in Iran
have started, apparently over the recent elections. The revolution, it seems, will be blogged (with pictures). But not televised? Has anyone seen anything on CBSNBCBBCABCFOXESPN about this? If the riots are over the election, why are we hearing from the BBC (and others, presumably) that the election went smoothly
? Does anyone have more information about what's happening with these pro-democracy riots? (Via Roger L. Simon
posted by swerdloff
on Mar 14, 2004 -
"The mob was rolling toward us for the second attack. This was, in a way, the worst of that night. For one thing, it was still daylight; later, when night fell, our own sense of organization helped us much more, but this was daylight and they poured down the road and into us, swinging broken fenceposts, billies, bottles, and wielding knives..." Howard Fast's account of a terrifying evening that was supposed to be an outdoor concert near Peekskill, NY. You can think about the political implications ("...it illustrates how easily, when terror is unleashed in a nation, it can take hold, and how thin the line is that separates constitutional government from tyranny and dictatorship...") or just enjoy the riveting tale. (Related song and picture here
posted by languagehat
on Dec 1, 2003 -
In anti-war protests in Australia yesterday
as young as 12 were shown on TV coverage participating not only in protests, but in the violence that followed when the protesters attacked police. There has, in the past, been condemnation of those who bring their children along to protests, but this is the first time I have seen large numbers of children protesting on their own behalf - most of whom would have been truant from school and, judging by the way many hid from cameras, without the permission of their parents. Should we take them seriously, or are they too young to really understand what it is they are protesting against? [more inside]
posted by dg
on Mar 26, 2003 -
Rioters complain about tear gas.
[Bloominton Hearald-Times, link expires after a week] After Indiana University lost to Maryland in the NCAA finals, drunken fans rioted in the streets forcing police to use tear gas. It was stupid enough to start a riot, but rioters complained that the police offered no warning before deploying tear gas after rioters pelted the police with beer bottles and prevented the fire department from putting out fires in the middle of the street.
"They could have easily done that," Raggs said. "If they would have said, 'You have 10 minutes, then we are going to use the tear gas,' people would have gone away."
Personally, I think the police showed an amazing level of restraint considering that about half of the state troopers on the scene got hit by flying glass.
posted by KirkJobSluder
on Apr 3, 2002 -
Two in a week!
That must be a record or something. Nobody knows where is Argentina going, and the rioters keep making damages in the capital. Nice way to spend the New Year's eve.
posted by Flor
on Dec 31, 2001 -
I live in Bradford.
This summer we had a series of riots
which tarnished the image of a city which, whilst I might love the place, didn't exactly have a sparkling reputation in the first place. A major reason cited
for the riots was the devisiveness in the local community of schools that cater only to one community, typically of course the community in which any given school happens to reside.
The UK government today announced that it would be basing the future of British schools
on the successes of the Bradford model. The future is single faith schools.
When I was 13 and choosing which lessons I was to take from that point up until I was 16 I made all the wrong choices, had others imposed upon me, and screwed up pretty badly ending up leaving at 15 with no qualifications at all (this is why I write '15' instead of 'fifteen' BTW). The future is also, apparantly, specialisation.
posted by vbfg
on Sep 5, 2001 -
stopping football holigans in the gambia
security forces banned from football tourney - "the beating of some of the footballers, team officials and supporters of the opposing team which resulted in the admission to hospital of a footabller and the serious wounding of some supporters is a total violation of fair play and can no longer be entertained by the committee."
well you've got to draw the line somewhere
posted by quarsan
on Aug 26, 2001 -
After the recent race riot troubles we have had here in England (bradford
), was this really a good idea to allow Louis Farrakhan into the country
. A sentance taken from one of the realated articles sum's it up pretty well "freedom of speech does not allow the right to shout "Fire" in a crowded theatre"
posted by monkeyJuice
on Aug 1, 2001 -
Riots in Cincinnati.
Cincinnati city police have this odd habit of killing unarmed young black males. In November, two men were killed. One was shot, another was crushed or suffocated while already in police custody and, according to witnesses, not resisting. Several weeks later a policeman shot and killed a twelve year old out joy-riding. Saturday night an officer chased down and shot a nineteen year old he 'thought he recognized' as someone with outstanding traffic warrants. Every time someone is killed Cincinnati city council promises to look into the matter but does nothing. Today someone decided to take action, even if it was in a destructive and politically impotent form of action.
posted by krakedhalo
on Apr 10, 2001 -