Chicago Divided Over Proposal to Honor a Slain Black PantherBreaking News
The homes, including the one Mr. Hampton died in, have been razed and new ones have been built. And a construction team was hammering away on a new building this week, even as Fred Hampton Jr. showed a visitor the street he wants renamed in his father's memory.
"This is one of the ground zeroes in our community, a place where brutal acts of terrorism occurred," Mr. Hampton said, gazing around in his dark sunglasses as snow flurries fell. "Chairman Fred deserves this honor for all the contributions he made. I learned lessons from his legend — about what a man is supposed to be."
What has not changed over four decades, even with the blurring and fading of memories, is the size of this city's division over what happened the day the elder Mr. Hampton was killed, who he was and what his legacy should be.
For his son, born just weeks after his father was killed and now known to some as Little Chairman Fred, and for many other black residents here, Mr. Hampton was a hero who boldly demanded rights for black people, pressed for meals for black schoolchildren and died at the hands of the police.
For many white residents, and police officers especially, Mr. Hampton was a frightening, dangerous radical from a turbulent era who told The Chicago Sun-Times, not long before his death at age 21, that he was "at war with the pigs."
And so, although nearly 1,300 city blocks in Chicago already bear brown street signs with honorary names for all sorts of people (plenty of whom few have ever heard of) and although most of those distinctions make their way through the City Council without even a moment of notice, a proposal this week to turn this block into Chairman Fred Hampton Way has stirred a sudden fury of debate.
comments powered by Disqus
- Rubio Surges Into Second In New Hampshire
- Branstad Says Cruz Ran ‘Unethical’ Campaign
- Christie Highlights Santorum’s Endorsement of Rubio
- Portman Comes Out Against Trade Deal
- Megyn Kelly Gets a Book Deal
- A Big List of the Bad Things Clinton Has Done
- An Unambiguous Sign Sanders Won Last Night’s Debate
- Still Friends at the End
- Quote of the Day
- Trump Still Leads as Clinton Slips
- Clinton Can’t Shake Image as Wall Street’s Friend
- Maddow Doesn’t See Sanders Winning
- Why Does the Media Still Shield Chelsea Clinton?
- Bush Jokes His Mother May Have Abused Him
- Rubio Closes the Gap in New Hampshire
- Humans Hard-Wired to Teach, Anthropologist Says
- Parents outraged after students shown ‘white guilt’ cartoon for Black History Month
- Maryland is once again considering retiring its state song
- One of the last remaining Nazis goes on trial in Germany
- Inside story finally told of the young US diplomat who cracked the case of the murder of 4 nuns in El Salvador in 1980
- A historian’s advice to students thinking of getting a PhD in a tough economic climate
- German historian Heinz Richter cleared of charges
- English professor uses literature to help cure historical amnesia
- WSJ features an article by a conservative calling for the abolition of Black History Month
- Mary Beard, herself a bestselling author, wonders why more women historians aren't