At first, we thought the knowledge gap might be generational. My Code Switch teammate Kat Chow, who was born years after the MOVE incident, had never heard of it. But another NPR colleague who's about a generation older hadn't either.
Maybe it was regional. On Twitter, a few people told us the bombing never landed on their radars until they moved to the Philadelphia area. But even though Tasneem Raja, my editor on Code Switch, grew up 20 minutes north of Philly and attended a "hippie" (her words) Quaker high school where events like the Kent State shootings got a lot of airtime in class, she remembers hearing about MOVE only from her dad, never in school.
I grew up in Philly during and after the bombing. My elementary school was the kind of place where we we learned Afrocentric songs and teachers dressed in kente cloth, while my high school was overwhelmingly black. We never discussed it in class, either.
I'm From Philly. 30 Years Later, I'm Still Trying To Make Sense Of The MOVE Bombing.
What gives? It's seems incredible that so many people had never heard about the time American law enforcement bombed U.S. citizens on U.S. soil, which, on top of the deaths, left dozens of bystanders' homes destroyed in an uncontrolled fire that the police commissioner told firefighters not to put out right away. The details are so extreme, so over-the-top. How have we forgotten this?
I put the question to Robin Wagner-Pacifici, who teaches at the New School and has written books on MOVE and other fringe militant groups involved in bloody government standoffs, including the Branch Davidians in Waco, Texas, and the Weaver family in Ruby Ridge, Idaho. She has noticed that while those groups identified with each other to a degree, referring to each other in their manifestos as fellow victims of the state, they don't seem to feel the same way about MOVE. "They created this kind of genealogy," she says, "but none of them mentioned MOVE." Via: NRG News #move9 #philly #harrieteve9 #philadelphia #systemicracism #move #americanhorrorstory #systemicoppression #colinkaepernick #takeaknee