Sunday, April 11, 2010

McDuffie riots - May 1980

Miami News, May 19, 1980

Miami News, May 20, 1980


  1. I remember late December 1979 when former US Marine
    and Insurance Salesman Arthur McDuffie was stopped by
    local Miami Dade Police for speeding in Liberty City and
    beaten to death.
    I remember the false Police reports and defamation of Arthur McDuffie's
    character when the criminal trial against the Officers began in 1980.
    I remember the outrage when the Police officers admitted their guilt
    after the Dade County coroners office acknowledged death by multiple
    fractures in the skull with flash lights.
    I remember all the Officers being found not guilty and the City, again, outraged by the injustice of the system.

    I remember buildings and business going up in flames that were not owned by our neighbors or community. The business and buildings that burned in that Spring of 1980 were owned by outsiders who over priced their products and rent to poor people.

    This act of "rioting" is actually called a rebellion against the institution that keeps one and all institutionalized and unable to change the conditions that one lives in.

    Similar actions took place in Auschwitz-Birkenau on October 7, 1944 by Jewish Prisoners who rebelled against the Nazis.

    The only difference today is that one history is written while the other is written off.


    1. To be somewhat civilized, what a crock! McDuffie ran from police on his motorcycle, he was not pursued by the police for no reason. McDuffie was killed by a blow from a hispanic cop- ruins your implication that only whites were involved. Mr. McDuffie was murdered, plain and simple- he and his family did not deserve such a fate. In the ensuing riots, which btw were S. Fl. wide, not just Miami, many, many work places that employed blacks were burnt down, thus leaving innocent, decent black folk without work. And what about the many innocent white people hurt and injured? Your disregard for fair play and balance leads me to believe you will have a hard time in Miami. You won't have soft whites to deal with, the hispanics will not be so kind to you.

  2. Similar actions took place in Auschwitz-Birkenau on October 7, 1944 by Jewish Prisoners who rebelled against the Nazis.

    The difference is the Jews did not kill innocent people, where the rioters did.

    1. I agree with Anonymous on every point.

  3. I was a young white guy (26), I didn't follow the case but have no problem believing the actions of the police. The corruption level was elevating from the influence of the Cocaine Cowboys and the tons of cash flowing into the affluent parts of the city. I was freshly out of years "working" the Carribean Basin, C.A. snd S.A. Nam was still fresh in the minds of many and the influence of violence still lingered.
    I was summoned and responded, my position was a roof top of the Burdines warehouse in Hialeah off 47th. Ave
    My instructions were simple -- same as usual -- no admittance into the compound.
    And no one did.
    As an older man of now almost 60, I empathize with the current residents of what still is a depressed area in a now much wider sea of despair.
    But saw that much of the condition was self-inflicted.
    Three years later, I was on top of a water tank at what used to be Key Pharmasuticals at Golden Glades interchange.
    The problems still existed, there were no improvements in civil unrest, the socio-economic conditions remained unchanged.
    Only the names had changed -- but the game continued.
    Unfortunate but true.... some things just don't change.

  4. My aunt was killed by a curb stone while sitting in my uncles car stuck in traffic at 56 St & NW 27th Ave. When the curb stone hit, my uncle drove over the median strip as the guy in front of him was drug out of his van and run over with it. I was born in Miami 70 years ago and now live in Montana. Lord how I miss that wonderful foreign country it is now

  5. I am doing a research project on the Miami Riots and I was wondering if you could tell me where the three videos in the above post originally came from so I could cite them properly. Thank you.

    1. From a PBS documentary, "Eyes on the Prize."


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