Fintan O’Toole: The violence of racism is deeply embedded in American society

In 2016, white America elected a racist president. That privilege comes with a cost

Posters of Patrick Dorismond, seen circa 2000. Dorismond was killed outside a bar in Manhattan.  Photograph: Budd Williams/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images

Posters of Patrick Dorismond, seen circa 2000. Dorismond was killed outside a bar in Manhattan. Photograph: Budd Williams/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images

Twenty years ago, I was living in New York and working as a drama critic for the Daily News. I used to walk most mornings across Manhattan to the paper’s office on the west side of the island.

On March 16th, 2000, I saw some police tape outside the Wakamba, a cocktail lounge on Eighth Avenue, but didn’t think much of it. Only later in the day did I hear that a 26 year-old-man, Patrick Dorismond, had been shot dead there in the early hours of the morning. In that foolish way the mind has of making events that happen on familiar territory seem more important, I paid a lot of attention to this killing.

The Irish Times
Please subscribe or sign in to continue reading.
The Irish Times

How can I keep reading?

You’ve reached an article that is only available to Irish Times subscribers.

Subscribe today and get the full picture for just €1 for the first month.

Subscribe No obligation, cancel any time.