This music video is pretty relevant for Tacoma at the moment, since the police here recently arrested 32 black men in connection to a lot of random and disconnected crimes dating back more than a year ago.

Some are “conspiracy” charges, others are random break-ins, some manslaughters, and the ambiguous overarching charge that they are members of the Hilltop Crips. It’s really bizarre that membership in a street gang is a crime just by association, while membership in a banned book club, the KKK, neo-Nazi group, the military, or the police force is not.

Before any of the charges can be proved in the court system, the media and the internet trolls here in Tacoma — a small and sheltered place with prickly morals — speak out against the “trash” and balk at the accusations of racism.

The TNT: “I heard the trumped up charges read by the state,” one of the defendants, Brown, replied at his arraignment…

“The Ku Klux Klan can conspire every day to kill a black person and not face conspiracy charges.” That remark from Brown, who is African-American, drew applause from many black people in the gallery.

The definition of “gang” in the Tacoma municipal code is so vague, so broad, that any three guys wearing dark clothes could easily be identified as a gang. Where I used to live on the Hilltop many times the police would stop people for no reason whatsoever. Walking through a park is enough to get you stopped especially if you look a certain way. Then they changed the code so walking through Wright Park at night is an offense (even though it has no sidewalks!)

It’s not just racism, it’s classism. White kids I know have been classified as “juggalo” gangsters by the police, when doing nothing but walking through the city. When another officer questions them later for something else, once they check their ID the name comes up as “gang member”.

You are not allowed to walk around this city without the police harassing with you, especially if you’re black, asking you if you have money to go any place, asking basically what reason you have for living there. It’s all part of the plan to “clean up” the trash — and that means the black people.

“I think Tacoma is a very racist little town,” said Velma Stewart [someone who attended the arraignments.] “I think it is retaliation and harassment for what happened to the Lakewood officers.”

Pretty good assessment.

Some comments on the NewsTribune’s page:

knowumsayin says:

Astonishing arrogance. Tacoma is racist because a black is arrested..? And the KKK..? When was the last time they killed a black..? 1968..? Whites get beat up and killed by roving gangs of blacks all the time.

ldozy1234 says:

Perfect

Since Tacoma is “just a very little racist town”, I hope to see Lakewood and other Pierce County cities do the same sweep.

Come on folks- gangs yelling about lack of equality? Lets give it to them.

demeter says:

They should have asked for identification on everyone who went to court in support of these thugs and ran them for warrants i guarantee 40-60% of them would have came up dirty. see ya later the hilltop will be better of without the pieces of human garbage on to the east side!

thurber says:

Good going law enforcement! Thank you again!

HalfofJ2 says:

Thank you Tacoma PD! More useless thugs off the streets. Sweep, sweep… sweep up the trash!

If they think Tacoma is racist for doing JUSTICE than they should leave. I doubt anybody in the area will shed a tear to see them go. I am SICK of these types of African Americans constantly pulling the race card. This isn’t the 50’s and 60’s people! You are an embarrassment to the many outstanding, educated, classy people of your race.

At least someone in the racist little City of Tacoma can see through their smoke and mirrors:

Micbizzle says:

Oh wow! Conspiracy! Thats a stretch. Convict them on actually commiting crimes. Do better police work and collect evidence. Not arrest them for claiming to be in a gang. Known mafia members walk the streets free because no charges will stick including conspiracy. Kids don’t join gangs for the sole purpose of commiting crimes, they join to belong to something when everyone else has rejected them. The guys who actually did the crimes should be locked up. Otherwise this is like the movie ‘Minority Report’.