The Miami Herald picked up the beat: “A small fight,” said the local paper of record.
Which could have been news to the dozens of extra police from three neighboring areas, along with a SWAT team, police dogs, rifles, a helicopter, and other crowd control measures that were required to get the mob under control and out of the mall.
The mall closed for several hours. No one was arrested. But lots of people saw what happened. And their account is different from the antiseptic “nothing to see here folks” version that appeared in the local press.
News of the fighting spread on Twitter long before police showed up. Dozens of black people tweeted and retweeted about meeting for a fight across the street from the mall at Lauderhill Park.
Nikeman Roger tweeted: “I hear Lauderdale gonna be crazy today.”
Another who calls himself Don’t Kill My Vibe tweeted: “Today is a big day JUNE THE 25 b****** & n***** going crazy in ft.lauderdale ( Lauderhill ) they fighting to day.”
Rod El Jefe tweeted: “I’m sliding to that lil fight in lauderhill tomorrow.” And several people passed that around with retweets.
Tyanna @insantiyDope said “Everyone On My News feed Talking Bout This Fight At Lauderhill Park Tomorrow.”
As the mall filled up, so did Twitter: “Lauderhill Mall was so d*** pack so many kids, police them kids crazy about to fight,” said @BabyyFaceSara.
“Lauderhill Mall Deep A**! N***** & Cops All Over pic.twitter.com/nB5IhZ8Lkr,” said @jsuedee.
There was fighting in the mall and out of the mall at the nearby park. No one is reporting anyone attacked police or threw bottles or brandished weapons. Unless you call beating someone with a traffic cone a weapon.
Some said the fighters were talking about the trial of George Zimmerman for the killing of Trayvon Martin. Another popular topic on Twitter:
“If they free Zimmerman, Ima get that crowd dat was at Lauderill mall yesterday (for) his as**,” said @RudeAhtip.
The fight attracted so much attention that it trended as the fifth most popular topic on Twitter.
None of the stories mentioned the mob was black. Or that it was part of pattern of black mob violence in more than 100 cities around the country, documented in “White Girl Bleed a Lot: The return of racial violence and how the media ignore it.”
But the videos and Tweets made that clear. That also got a lot of attention from the commenters at local news sites: Said Spuy767 at the local CBS.com site:
“I love that these stories always neglect to mention the fact that this mob was mostly, if not all, black. It really is shameful that the media has this much power to control information. All they have to do is refuse to report something, or leave off an important detail when it suits their agenda, and the narrative is changed.”
Another reported that damage from this kind of mob action is deeper and longer lasting than most people think about, said one poster who called himself Truth that the Media Ignores:
“black people, if you ever wonder why whites move out when you move in, if you ever wonder why once-prosperous malls filled with white shoppers decline into nasty rundown cr@p-holes, understand this:
we may be publicly muzzled from speaking out by the PC thought police, but we are not blind. we see how you act. this video just shows expected behavior.
once a mall goes black, white people don’t come back.
The mall’s reputation for “ghetto” behavior was also a popular topic of conversation on Twitter.
This was at least the second case of black mob violence in the area in less than a month. Over the Memorial Day Weekend, hundreds of black people fought and destroyed property at the Fort Lauderdale boardwalk.
Many of the people involved were in Fort Lauderdale after leaving the intense-security of Black Beach Week at nearby Miami Beach.
Much like the fracas at Lauderhill, local police and business boosters tried to minimize the violence and deny that it was racial at all. The Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel mentioned the term “race riot,” if only to dismiss it as a rumor.
A fight or two. A little alcohol-fueled friskiness. A bit of spill-over from the traditional chaos and lawlessness of Black Beach Week over at Miami Beach. Other than that, not much. So said the local paper. So said the police chief. So said local business boosters.
“If there were a riot on the beach, I think we would have had more people going to jail…We had the situation under control,” Chief Frank Adderley told the Sun-Sentinel.
Then someone named Jilly Tracy – a local entertainment reporter – said she did not expect the situation to ever repeat because, “Las Vegas is rapidly becoming the new destination for the Memorial Day gathering of young black professionals.”
At this point in the article, we still had no idea of what exactly would not repeat because the paper did not report what happened in the first place. Other than nothing.
Finally the entertainment reporter broke it down for us. What really happened: “You have that many young black people together at any one time, it frightens white people.”
Black mob violence? No problem.
Scared white people? Big problem.
This is what passes for reporting in sunny Lauderdale.
Finally the Broward Bulldog got around to talking about what actually did happen. “Fort Lauderdale police used tear gas during beach disturbance later downplayed by chief.”
Here we learned about widespread violence, pepper gas, people trapped in boardwalk businesses, other businesses closing down, hundreds of phone calls to local officials, along with some video.
So much so that one of the local elected officials had to fess up: “Everybody wants to downplay it…We were caught by surprise. We haven’t seen things like this for decades,” said Fort Lauderdale Commissioner Dean Trantallis.
The Bulldog reported that several people commented on the original story in the Sun-Sentinel to set them straight:
“Joedavotta” posted on the newspaper’s Website, “I was there and it was dangerous…About 10-15 police units besieged the place…SWAT arrived. Pepper spray fill[ed] the air. A1A was jammed with traffic … Debris was strewn across the beach.
“VictoriaHoliday” posted on the Web site, “Many, many, many in the…crowd demonstrate[d] classless behavior…They [were] aggressive…and unpleasant…If you tell me the event does not attract thugs – you are lying.”
Curiously, the comments at the Sun-Sentinel’s article are no longer available on-line. More from the Bulldog:
“Several hundred subjects surrounded the fight making it nearly impossible for officers to break up the fight safely,” Police Officer Zack Baro said in a report. The fight spilled into A1A, blocking traffic. “More onlookers came out of Beach Place and continued to agitate the crowd . . .,” according to Baro.
Police Capt. Jonathan Appel reported that several hundred people “cheered [the fighters] on.” After Appel ordered the crowd to disperse, bottles and debris were thrown at the officers. A water bottle struck Baro’s head, Appel said.
“I’ve been inundated,” Trantalis told his fellow commissioners. “I’m sure all of you have been inundated with people who live and visit the area who feel extremely threatened.”
But black mob violence? That had nothing to do with anything. said Seiler:
“Seiler disagreed with several people who wrote him blaming the disturbance on blacks.
“This isn’t about race,” the mayor told the commission. “We have had a tremendous diversity on Fort Lauderdale beach…It was just a raucous party crowd that was attracted regardless of race and economic background.”
The mayor may be the only one who believes the mob was straight out of a Benetton ad for racial diversity. The mob was black. As videos show. And many witnesses say.
City Commissioner Romney Rogers said his secretary visited the beach at 2 p.m. on Memorial Day. She found the crowd “the rowdiest she has ever seen.”
Editor’s note: Colin Flaherty has done more reporting than any other journalist on what appears to be a nationwide trend of skyrocketing black-on-white crime, violence and abuse. WND features these reports to counterbalance the virtual blackout by the rest of the media due to their concerns that reporting such incidents would be inflammatory or even racist. WND considers it racist not to report racial abuse solely because of the skin color of the perpetrators or victims.) Videos linked or embedded may contain foul language and violence.