The Denver Post reports: "Racial attacks like the ones behind the arrest of 32 suspects in Denver are part of a trend spreading across the country, gang experts said Saturday."
Here's the sort of thing they're talking about:
[Warning: not for the easily offended. Violent assaults accompanied by thoroughly appropriate music.]
Here are some excerpts from The Denver Post's report:
"As part of the trend, black gang members videotape the assaults...and sell them on the underground market as entertainment.
"'They knock a young white guy out with one blow to see if his knees will wobble and surround them and take their money,' said the Rev. Leon Kelly, who runs a Denver gang-prevention program. 'It's a joke.'
"Denver police announced the 32 arrests Friday after a months-long undercover investigation into what authorities said were racially motivated assaults and robberies...
"Several months ago, Kelly said, he got a copy of a videotape recorded in West Palm Beach, Fla. Gang members surrounded a white couple at a club. One of them told the others to hold on.
"'He said, "Let me get this camera on" It's a staged thing,' Kelly said
"The gang members crave the notoriety of having their one-punch knockouts recorded on tape and sold on the black [sic] market. They'll rewind the tapes and watch them over and over, he said.
"When they watch the videos and see a big punch landed and gang members at the scene start laughing, they'll all break out laughing, said Kelly...
"'They think it's so cool to see someone get beaten up like that,' he said.
"In Denver, groups of four or five black men would approach a victim late at night or early in the morning and taunt a man with racial slurs...Gang members have broken victims' noses and shattered eye sockets...
"A task force including Denver cops, FBI agents and prosecutors...identified 26 incidents since July in which the gangs assaulted or robbed white or Latino men..."
In one of their reports on this interesting phenomenon, which includes a more extended version of the video posted above, TwinCities.com asks their readers: "Is it real? Do you think these are real assaults on people?"
Their poll offers four choices:
(1) It's real, and outrageous! I hope they catch these kids.
(2) It's real, but not all that bad. Just boys being boys, a la "Jackass."
(3) This is clearly staged. What's the big deal?
(4) I'm not sure.
As for whether it's "real" - of course it is. The only new element here is the videotaping. Back in my student days in Chicago and Berkeley, this sort of thing was absolutely routine, and I was incautious enough to get victimized, several times, myself.
Unfortunately, TwinCities.com's poll does not include my own preferred response:
(5) It's real, and it illustrates the importance of the Second Amendment.
Tip o' the hat to Auster.