Tuesday, May 28, 2024


Book Review: Ida B. Wells-Barnett Still Speaks: Mob Rule In New Orleans.

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(ThySistas.com) “Since that time I have been engages on a work not yet finished, which I interrupt now to tell the story of the mob in New Orleans, which, despising all law, roamed the streets day and night, searching for colored men and women, whom they beat, shot and killed at will.”

History can be difficult to encounter, however it is necessary. It tends to give us the story of why and how things got to be as they are. History can remind us we’re not alone, but apart of a long chronicle of a situation. When we see the social ills of the day its important to know history, if we chose to embrace it, told us there was a problem and more importantly that it may be an uphill battle to reach a solution or peace. I was reminded of this as I read “Mob Rule in New Orleans by Ida B Wells-Barnett.

Ida B. Wells-Barnett Still Speaks - Mob Rule In New Orleans.

Click on the Link – Above!!

Being a Native New Orleanian I admit this book was a difficult read. There is no sugar coating the hatred, violence, and terror. The sheer inhumanity is blatant to the reader. Though I remember hearing stories about a time that mob rule took over the streets of New Orleans, this book tells the stories and gives a name to victims. The horror came to life on the page. These were human beings going about their life, some were driving back into town, some headed to work, others visiting from out of town, but they were all spotted, hunted, and attacked for no other reason than they were Black.

One may ask what the benefit is of reading this book where there is horror on every page. This book is a great resource for further understanding the issue of policing in urban areas in terms of the longevity  of the matter. It is important that we don’t shun history because it makes us angry or uncomfortable. Books like “Mob Rule In New Orleans” are also a reference for the mentality of certain communities when talking about law enforcement. There are many people in New Orleans that grew up with a distrust of the police, with the exception maybe of those they know personally, and that sentiment didn’t appear out of thin air. Regardless of what some people outside of Black communities may think, this sentiment wasn’t formed because we are more violent or criminal than other groups. Here we have a book that documents violence against any black person that began, and was allowed to turn into a mob, under the watch of the police.

The work of Ida B, Wells-Barnett is priceless, and it provides the receipts that our people were indeed tortured in this country. Her work is passionate yet based on documented information. To ignore the numbers and accounts she presents is to insist on denying the inhuman torture our people have suffered.  As I read “Mob Rule in New Orleans”, my mind reflected on the Algiers Point Massacre that took place in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Is was a situation whereby Black people were hunted by a group of white people and shot at for sport. This was 2005, but based on this book…it was nothing new. In order to have the necessary conversations about how to have better policing presence in urban cities like New Orleans, and to address the concerns of the people, one has to understand the depth of the situation. I highly recommend this book to anyone that is wanting to better understand the problem, in order to assist with a solution.

Mob Rule In New Orleans” by Ida B. Wells-Barnett can be found at your local bookstore, Amazon, and anywhere books are sold.

Staff Writer; Christian Starr

May connect with this sister over at Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/christian.pierre.9809 and also Twitterhttp://twitter.com/MrzZeta.


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