So I'm making my way through Paula Giddings wonderful biography of Ida B. Wells, who may well me the mother of all black journalists--and even that understates her significance. But the incident that really kicks off Wells's career is a race riot in Memphis. The blacks in the town, fearing such an occurrence, had organized themselves into a fraternity/militia called the Tennessee Rifles. And you know who sold these cats guns? A local merchant who just happened to be a member of Memphis relatively small Jewish community, who defied his fellow Southern whites. Now that's what a call a black-Jewish coalition. Screw getting our asses kicked together, lets get some guns...

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