“I had a safe place!”

American history is full of stories of black people doing precisely what America says it wants of its citizens — being creative, enterprising and industrious, being self-respecting and self-sufficient — only to have white people destroy what they’ve built, impede their progress and erase their wealth. And those are not far-off stories: Those are also the stories of the living.

Charles M. Blow: Eyewitness to the Desolation of ‘Black Wall Street’