Good neighbors. Janique Martinez and her family, who are Black, moved into a Virginia Beach cul-de-sac on Jessamine Court five years ago. Some time ago, “constant” banjo music began emanating from the house next door. Then in July, sounds of a monkey screeching came through a window every 15 to 30 seconds. The loud noise was a nuisance, but multiple visits by police to the neighbor brought only temporary respite. Then in September, Martinez said she started hearing the n-word. Virginia Beach officials say they can’t do anything more than they already have. But the community has rallied around the Martinez family. Last Friday about 25 people gathered on the street Friday chanting, “Spread love, not hate,” according to The Virginian-Pilot story. Apparently, the neighbors didn’t need indoctrination sessions under the guise of “training” to know racism when they see it, to stand up against it, and to show solidarity with their Black friends.
Bad neighbors. Chad Wolf, who served as acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security under Donald Trump, writes today in The Daily Signal how he was targeted last year by protesters outside his house week after week. The “protest” played out the same way every day: the demonstrators would organize a quarter mile away, march through neighborhood streets, holding up traffic, then remain for an hour or more while shouting through loudspeakers. They never applied for a permit, which was required in the City of Alexandria. But there was a difference from the Martinez case. City Councilman John Chapman joined the protesters on several occasions. And so did some of Wolf’s neighbors.