The first race riot I ever started wasn’t much to write home about. This was back in 1978. At recess one day at Lipscomb Elementary, I found a blue Bic pen out on the blacktop. I broke it open and scribbled the word “fart” on a window ledge. Robert Crawford squealed on me, and I had blue ink all over my fingers. I was in trouble.
So I started a race riot. I got two black third-graders and a mulatto second-grader who was old enough to be in the third grade but who’d been held back, and we bushwhacked a Mexican who was pushing a shaved-ice cart through the neighborhood.
Like I said, it wasn’t much of a race riot. No tear gas or anything. No police dogs.
My second race riot was way better. It was in 1985, when I was 15. I was riding in the back of a car piloted by a classmate’s older cousin, headed to a Bruce Springsteen concert at the Cotton Bowl. Traffic on Fitzhugh was a mess. Total standstill. My bladder couldn’t take the wait. So I hopped out of the car and relieved myself in a vacant lot. But as I was walking back to the car, a cop appeared out of nowhere and wrote me a ticket for urinating in public. I was furious. I was indignant.
I figured because I was in Old East Dallas I could go two ways with my race riot: black or Hispanic. But then I called up Mayor Starke Taylor, and he said, “Why not let’s get us some of those Vietnamese joints over on Ross?” I told him that I didn’t think “Vietnamese,” strictly speaking, was a race. But who wants to get into a discussion about folk taxonomy versus scientific classification of race when there’s rioting to be done? We went over to Ross and burned about five city blocks to the ground. Plus, you know, the usual race riot stuff: assault with intent to commit mayhem, regular aggravated assault, simple assault. Whampin’ and whompin’ every livin’ thing that moves to within an inch of its life. Except the women folks, of course. We attended to them at the Number 6 Dance later on.
Starke was awesome, too. He was the one who taught me that no race riot is complete without some looting. I’ll never forget pushing that shopping cart down the street, loaded with consumer electronics, with Starke shouting: “Remember the Arizona!”
After that second race riot, I really got the hang of it. It got to where I hardly needed an excuse to start a race riot.
Remember when they aired the terrible episode of Sesame Street wherein Snuffleupagus made the transition from imaginary friend to substantiated pachydermatous animal? I got some Asian buddies together, and, in a three-day orgy of violence, we nearly destroyed Richardson.
In 1995, during a cricket match in Melbourne, Australian umpire Darrell Hair no-balled Sri Lankan bowler Muttiah Muralitharan seven times for his controversial throwing motion. I rounded up a horde of Pacific Islanders, and we put on a race riot the likes of which Dalworthington Gardens had never seen.
1998: Tommy Lee was arrested for beating up Pamela Anderson. Tongan riot in Hurst. I didn’t even know what a Tongan was, but they sure could riot.
1999: Jar Jar Binks. Native American riot in Allen. (I think they were Chickasaw. They all look the same to me.)
After that, the riots run together. By 2003 I was inciting a race riot every six weeks or so. It was hectic, and my calendar was full. I remember at one point saying to my rioters, “If this is Wednesday, you must be Eskimos!” Boy, did that joke bomb. They prefer to be called Inuits.
All of which I mention because it seems Councilman James Fantroy can’t get his riot on. He threatened a race riot if Police Chief Terrell Bolton were fired. And Bolton was fired. But no riot. Alas.
And then, most recently, the FBI started poking around for corruption at City Hall. All four black councilmembers have been subpoenaed and so have black members of the Plan Commission, which led Fantroy to say: “This has gotten way out of hand. And they better stop it. Because they’ll mess around and make the Los Angeles riot look like a picnic.” Weeks passed. But, again, no riot.
Councilman, if you’re reading this, I’m here for you. As you can see from my extensive experience with race riots, I know how to get the job done. The LA riot? A picnic? Heck, we can do better than that.