Monday, July 13, 2009

Bastards of the Party

Raised in the Athens Park neighborhood of Los Angeles, Cle "Bone" Sloan was four years old when his father died, and 12 when he became a member of the Bloods. Now an inactive member of the notorious gang, Sloan looks back at the history of black gangs in his city and makes a powerful call for change in modern gang culture with his insightful documentary, Bastards of the Party.

Bastards of the Party draws its title from this passage in "City of Quartz": "The Crips and the Bloods are the bastard offspring of the political parties of the '60s. Most of the gangs were born out of the demise of those parties. Out of the ashes of the Black Panther Party came the Crips and the Bloods and the other gangs." Bastards of the Party traces the timeline from that "great migration" to the rise and demise of both the Black Panther Party and the US Organization in the mid- 1960s, to the formation of what is currently the culture of gangs in Los Angeles and around the world.

The documentary also chronicles the role of the Los Angeles Police Department and the FBI in the evolution of gang culture. During his tenure from 1950 to 1966, Chief Robert Parker bolstered the ranks of the LAPD with white recruits from the south, who brought their racist attitudes with them. Parker's racist sympathies laid the groundwork for the volatile relationship between the black community and the LAPD that persists today.


Anonymous said...

"Do not label your children"

Probably the best message of this documentary.

Alexzander said...

Personally I think this is one of the best documentaries I have witnessed in my life. Out of all the doco's on this site this is one that has really changed my perspective on the gang situation. It put a face on the problem, and showed the lead up history to why the urban communities have become bastions of gang violence and culture, and more importantly how this is perpetuated. This should be viewed by anyone who is involved in gangs, or looks down upon people in gangs as less then human.

Kuraz said...

Great doc...sheds a lot of light on how all the gangs came about for a ignorant cracker like me. I found it intriguing how the black movements in the sixties were basically dismantled by killing all the strong leaders, which just lead to having a generation of people without any vision except disbelief in anything. Of course it all led to chaos. It makes one wonder where we'd be if those leaders would have been able to move forward and to give people something to believe in. Thanks for posting.

Simmons said...

Because of slavery these groups act like this? Gimme a break, a big one. BULL. Nice excuse, nice easy way out, instead of going to school and getting a job, here's an idea- take a bus right the heck out of the city and start a real life.

Amir Avni said...

Hi Scott

Glad to see you're back!

I'm a fan of your blog, there's so much good stuff in here

I was wondering if you'll be able to post Adam Curtis' new documentary "It felt like a Kiss"

Thank you :)

Marieca Page said...

This was one of the best documentaries I've seen. Totally enthralling. Thank you!

Anonymous said...


Great documentary albeit it's played down. Many of the supposed bad guys that we unconsciously label are essentially humans and good and kind people. Problem is we don't bother to get to know them cos we're so much with our own lives. I should know. My brother is in jail.

Anonymous said...

GREAT documentary. This dude is good on the history of the crips and bloods. The Black Panthers were started in Oakland, which had nothing to do with Los Angles. Gimme a break, these idiots would never work at a factory job. Slavery is finished 200 years ago. These idiots kill each other for stupid crap. Hispanic gangs outnumber the crips easily. The myth that bloods are the majority is a joke. The negroes need to leave and go back to texas.

Brenna said...

The comment above confuses me.
This doc is fantastic however!