- No mas: Principal bans Spanish language in intercom announcement
- Hacking software could put ‘zombie drone army’ in user’s hands
- Support for stricter gun laws drops: poll
- 10 whales dead, 41 others stranded in Everglades
- John Boehner faces bipartisan pressure to allow gay-rights vote
- Martin Bashir resigns from MSNBC over ‘ill-judged’ comments about Sarah Palin
- Rep. Duncan Hunter: While Obama prays for Iranian change, U.S. should ready its nukes
- Best company ever? Veteran Beer Co. exists to employ vets, provide quality beer
- Iran official: Sanctions ‘utterly failed’ to stop nuclear program
- ‘Black Santa’ display at IU sparks student outrage
Philadelphia mayor talks tough to black teenagers after ‘flash mobs’
PHILADELPHIA — Mayor Michael A. Nutter, telling marauding black youths “you have damaged your own race,” imposed a tougher curfew Monday in response to the latest “flash mob” — spontaneous groups of teens who attack people at random on the streets of the city’s tourist and fashionable shopping districts.
“Take those God-darn hoodies down, especially in the summer,” Mr. Nutter, the city’s third black mayor, said in an angry lecture aimed at black teens. “Pull your pants up and buy a belt ‘cause no one wants to see your underwear or the crack of your butt.”
“If you walk into somebody’s office with your hair uncombed and a pick in the back, and your shoes untied, and your pants half down, tattoos up and down your arms and on your neck, and you wonder why somebody won’t hire you? They don’t hire you ‘cause you look like you’re crazy,” the mayor said. “You have damaged your own race.”
Mr. Nutter announced that he was beefing up police patrols in certain neighborhoods, enlisting volunteers to monitor the streets and moving up the weekend curfew for minors to 9 p.m.
Parents will face increased fines for each time their child is caught violating the curfew.
The head of Philadelphia’s chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, J. Whyatt Mondesire, said it “took courage” for Mr. Nutter to deliver the message.
“These are majority African-American youths and they need to be called on it,” Mr. Mondesire said.
Mary Catherine Roper, a spokeswoman for the Philadelphia chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, said her group sees the curfew move as legal with its sole caveat being that it not evolve “into an excuse to hassle” any youths on the street.
The state ACLU filed a federal lawsuit last year challenging Philadelphia police’s use of “stop and frisk” searches. A settlement announced in June allowed the program to continue, along with safeguards to prevent the use of racial profiling.
In the past two years, the City of Brotherly Love has been the scene of several flash mobs in which youths meet at planned locations by texting one another and then commit assorted mayhem.
In one episode, teens knocked down passers-by on a Center City street and entered an upscale department store where they assaulted shoppers. On another occasion, hundreds of teens gathered in a restaurant district and menaced patrons, forcing some restaurant owners to lock customers inside temporarily for their own protection or to close early.
In the latest event July 29, about 20 to 30 youths descended on Center City after dark, then punched, beat and robbed bystanders. One man was kicked so savagely that he was hospitalized with a fractured skull. Police arrested four people, including an 11-year-old.
Other cities have grappled with the problem of destructive flash mobs. In Chicago on Memorial Day weekend, roving teens flashed gang signs, knocked cyclists off their bikes and harassed picnickers. Police closed a popular beach as the violence escalated.
In January, dozens of young people stormed a popular Milwaukee mall late in the afternoon and scared customers and store employees.
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Dave Boyer is a White House correspondent for The Washington Times. A native of Allentown, Pa., Boyer worked for the Philadelphia Inquirer from 2002 to 2011 and also has covered Congress for the Times. He is a graduate of Penn State University. Boyer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Susan Rice slams Russia, China on human rights
- Joe Biden meets Xi Jinping in China to try to defuse tensions on air defense zone
- Bill Clinton: Damage to Democrats over Obamacare rollout failure will be 'minimal'
- Chamber chief laments 'avalanche' of Obama regulations
- U.S. sending sub-hunting jets to East China Sea
Latest Blog Entries
- Angry NTSB ousts railroad union from N.Y. train crash site
- Xbox One, Playstation 4 games penalize users for cursing in their own homes
- Apple wins facial recognition patent for iPhone 6
- Puerto Rico caravan honoring Paul Walker ends in 6 drunken-driving arrests, 72 speeding tickets
- Hola: Boehner prepares to push amnesty bill through House
- Inside China: Nuclear submarines capable of widespread attack on U.S.
- Kill team: Obama war chiefs widen drone death zones
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- Wingate University on lockdown after 2 shot dead
- First Dog Sunny knocks down Ashtyn Gardner; Michelle Obama yanks leash
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
The only thing broken about our immigration policy has been our collective cowardice as a nation to enforce our current immigration laws
Al Maurer provides a common sense, conservatarian, Constitutional conservative perspective from the battleground state of Colorado
Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfills the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.