According to the president of the Milwaukee Bucks, Peter Feigin, Milwaukee is the most racist and segregated ciyt. The city is so racist that Donald Trump is guaranteed to win the state of Wisconsin in November without even campaigning there.
During a visit last week to the Rotary Club of Madison, Wis., Feigin called Milwaukee — a city found by multiple analyses in recent years to be the most segregated city in the United States.
Feigin also said that the Bucks arena development project will infuse life into a part of the city desperately in need. The New York City native said he’s had his eyes opened to the issues facing Milwaukee and said the team is determined to help wherever it can. Its top three priorities are wellness, education and work development, he said.
“We know we can’t cure the world,” Feigin said. “But we are very determined to get ourselves involved in programs that we can measure a difference in and put our claws into for a long period of time and show a difference. Very bluntly, Milwaukee is the most segregated, racist place I’ve ever experienced in my life. It just is a place that is antiquated. It is in desperate need of repair and has happened for a long, long time. One of our messages and one of our goals is to lead by example.”
Feigin certainly isn’t the first business executive or public figure to make statements about segregation and racial issues in Milwaukee, which made national headlines during the Sherman Park unrest in mid-August that caused millions of dollars in damages to local businesses. However, Feigin’s remarks do stand out for, as he said, their bluntness — in this case from the most public face of a professional sports franchise that relies on fan and sponsor support and is seeking more of both for the new $500 million arena.
The “Sherman Park unrest” refers to public protests that followed the fatal shooting of 23-year-old Sylville Smith by 24-year-old police officer Dominique Heaggan-Brown after a traffic stop in mid-August. Police say Smith was fleeing from the traffic stop after refusing to drop the handgun he was holding, and that a foot chase spanning only a few dozen feet and 20 to 25 seconds preceded the confrontation. Smith was African-American; so is Heaggan-Brown.
Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn said that footage retrieved from the body camera Heaggan-Brown wore showed that Smith “was armed,” that he “did turn toward the officer with the firearm in his hand,” and that “you can’t tell when the officer discharges his firearm.” The footage wasn’t released to the public because, according to Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel, “Release of the videos would compromise the integrity of the investigation.”
The protests spanned several nights following Smith’s death and turned violent, “with protesters throwing rocks, bricks and glass bottles at police, shots ringing out and a shooting victim rescued by officers and whisked to a hospital in an armored vehicle.” Multiple businesses were set on fire in the ensuing riots.