Skip to comments.THE BATTLE IN BIRMINGHAM (50 YEARS AGO TODAY)
Posted on 05/03/2013 5:42:48 AM PDT by Nextrush
On May 3, 1963 Eugene "Bull" Connor was still officially the duly elected Commissioner of Public Safety responsible for the police and fire departments of Birmingham.
But the election a month before of business community backed Albert Boutwell as mayor had his days numbered pending a final ruling from the Alabama Supreme Court.
After the massive protest by hundreds of black children, some as young as six and seven years old, the day before Connor's jails were filled with them. He had no more room.
When hundreds more students emerged from the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church at noontime, Connor had to stop them cold before they could march in defiance of a court injunction.
He chose to employ fire hoses and dogs to contain the demonstrators.
The hoses worked in part preventing an advance but failing to disperse. That's when he decided to combine hoses into water cannons on top of the fire engines.
The "monitor guns" could take the bark off a tree at 100 feet. When they were employed singing demonstrators became screaming demonstrators. People were knocked to the ground and pushed backwards by the water pressure with clothes being ripped off their backs.
The dogs went to work also. An Associated Press photographer got a picture of a white policeman holding a young black man with one hand and the leash of his dog with another giving enough slack so the young man could be chomped in the abdomen.
The visual images recorded by film and still photographers would be seen in newspapers, magazines and television news programs around the world.
Opposition in the black community of Birmingham to the protests now faded away in universal revulsion at the tactics of the authorities.
Hundreds of enraged black bystanders yelled at the police and some began to throw rocks and other objects at them.
As the battle wore on through the afternoon a police inspector came over to the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church to negotiate a truce which Dr. King agreed to.
In the evening King told a mass meeting "When I was a child I was dog bitten....for nothing. So I don't mind being bitten by a dog for freedom."
Meanwhile white leaders and the press were publishing criticism of King for using children in the protest marches.
Attorney General Robert Kennedy decried the harsh police tactics, but added in a statement released that evening: "An injured, maimed or dead child is a price that none of us can afford to pay."
The Kennedy Adminstration passed the word to MLK that the protests should stop because they ended with the rock throwing. There was concern in Washington that the graphic images going out through the media would spread the ripple of racial conflict to other cities.
King refused saying to the crowd that night: "Yesterday was D-Day, and tomorrow will be Double D-Day!"
Patriots who would consider civil disobedience today should look for an opponent who is inclined to make a fool of himself like say......Michael Bloomberg.
Why I am thinking Dolly Parton?
That was a sad time for Birmingham,Alabama. People all over the world think that is the Alabama of today:o(
Didn’t anything important happen in our history that doesn’t have something to do with Rosa Parks, MLK, desegregation black reparations, ignorant black politicians and black homosexual NBA players?
Weren’t there some other details in the making and shaping of America?
Like a revolutionary war, The writing of the Constitution, 600,000 killed in the War Between The States, two World Wars, the Cold War, landing men on the Moon, etc., etc,
Much trouble would come out of these events, but a lot of good people would move forward and put the bad things behind.
Yet others are still mired in fear and resentment passed down to new generations. Its easier to pin the tail on the donkey of “racism” than to take responsibility for one’s actions and change one’s life to improve it.
“Yet others are still mired in fear and resentment passed down to new generations. Its easier to pin the tail on the donkey of racism than to take responsibility for ones actions and change ones life to improve it.”
Yes, Condoleezza Rice is one of them.
I chose to post about these events because they were the ingition point of the racial conflict of the 1960’s.
ABC Anchorman Howard K. Smith, always outspoken (CBS fired him in 1961 for editorializing against segregation) told a PBS interviewer in 1974 that people turned ‘against the civil rights movement when it became violent.’
Your opinon reflects that sentiment. I was a child when MLK was assassinated but many adults expressed disgust with him calling him “a communist.”
There were certainly a pile of communists and communist sympathizers around MLK at this time in history including a guy who would be known in later times as the friend of Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez, namely Harry Belafonte.
MLK was very human, a man with mistresses and numerous liasons with prostitutes. I cannot judge him on it. I need to focus on my own shortcomings frankly.
Controversy swirled around him as these events unfolded.
If conservatives of the present choose a non-violent civil disobedience route like MLK did in the past, violent conflict of some sort is almost certain to follow.
Rice and race don’t concern me as much as the fact that she’s a part of the business as usual political establishment who among other things as Sec. of State criticized Israel for defending itself against terrorism with attacks on Gaza.
What hypocrisy considering what was being done because of 9-11 by our military. Conservatives rightly called her out on this at the time.
Mike King, that woman beating, hard parting, plagiarizing, communist puppet, wrote (or one of his handlers wrote) an article in the November 7 1964 Saturday Evening Post that the goal of his "non-violent" marches was to provoke violent reaction from local authorities that would then be propagandized by the compliant Corporate Media.
The "civil rights marchers" won the Battle of Birmingham in 1963 have controlled that city for 50 years. What condition have the victors left that city in 2013?
I didn’t mean for my previous post to sound as if I was criticizing you for posting this article.
But I also did not turn “against the civil rights movement when it became violent.”
I was just pointing out how concerns and news about the 13% of the population that is black have come to dominate the national media, schools, government and every aspect of our culture.
It is impossible for anything at all to take place without someone equating it to blacks, slavery, or racism. If a black student is expelled for bad conduct the teacher or school board is immediately accused of racism.
The obsession with blacks and racism has become so pervasive that people are sick of it. It is crushing us and every other aspect of our lives and our culture.
It makes us sick to the point of throwing up when the word black, African-American, Race or racism are used.
There is so much obsession with race that it has become oppressive and meaningless at the same time.
People are just fed up, sick and tired, worn out with race, racism and black news, black history and black apologists.
Detroit was bathed in flames in 1967 and where is it today?
Bull Connor was a Democrat. MLK was a Republican.
The Republicans won the battle of Birmingham. But of course MLK’s movement was co-opted by full-on race baiters after his death - no ‘content of his character’ stuff for them!
Any other significant historical anniversaries you think we should ignore?
Sure - Do away with MLK day.
In return the celebration of George Washington on his birthday should be restored to it's former preeminate stature.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.