Tag Archives: Connell Crooms

Ending 2017 by Looking Back at the Crooms and Mahmoud Murals

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Most of the talk of Connell Crooms, standing 150 feet tall on one cement silo, and Sara Mahmoud, standing back to back with him on the silo adjoining, concerns unity and solidarity, but Connell mentions the “power of irony.”

Van Helten turned these concrete ciphers into pillars of unity and community. The mural festival that brought him to town, ArtRepublic, alienated and angered much of the city’s art community, but Van Helten successfully soaked up the city and gave it back.

Arlington and Lillian Roads: No ID Required

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Respectfully, Devonte Shipman asks, “What was it that we did wrong, Officer?” This kind of thing has happened to him before. This time, he’s recording it.

Officer J.S. Bolen says, “You crossed the crosswalk! Against the red hand!” He threatens to put him in jail, calls for backup, and tells Vonte that Florida requires its residents to carry an ID at all times.

As though Bolen understands time in neighborhoods deemed not worth time. As though Bolen understands his position as Vonte Shipman’s public servant.

New Story: Hemming Park: Race and Brutality in the Genius Loci

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Friday night, April 7, 2017. Several Jacksonville police officers hold 155 lb Connell Crooms, an unarmed black man, down on the ground in Hemming Park, while Officer B.D. (Benjamin Daniel) McEwan crouches over Crooms and punches him repeatedly.

Astonishingly. Perhaps impudently. Probably just ignorantly. Which is no excuse. The root of “ignorance” is “ignore.” Sheriff Mike Williams begins his April 10th statement about the Hemming Park beatings and arrests with the word “Historically.”