Gawker is on a quest to determine the most racist city in America. Your contributions are vital to the cause. Please add your insights in the discussion system below. Or if you'd like to nominate another city please send an email here. Today...Philadelphia, Pa.

Population: 1.5 million

Ethnic Breakdown: 37% White, 42% Black, 12% Latino, 6% Asian, 3% Mystery Box

History of Racism:

  • Race riots in 1964 and 1842. Of the 1842 Lombard Street riot, Wikipedia notes that, "Irish Catholics, often competitors for the lowest-paying, unskilled and menial jobs, perceived the city's more successful African American residents as flaunting their success, setting the stage for the blacks to become targets for the immigrants frustrations." Thank God things are totally different now!
  • Supermarkets offering ethnically stereotypical foods as part of MLK Day sales
  • Racist local pool clubs
  • Mayor Frank Rizzo, who's practically a saint in South Philadelphia
  • MOVE

Police Brutality? Yes.

Hear it from Philadelphians!


During the days of the 14th level of hell that was the 700 level at the Vet, the following chant was commonplace: "Watermelon, watermelon, chicken wing. C'mon Randall do your thing.' Keep in mind this was a positive chant which usually was recited after a defensive stop.


I grew up in a war zone of a black neighborhood but I turn bitch anytime I find myself Near K&A. The poor whites dislike the Puerto Ricans and hate blacks that have jobs.
Once my manager at a copier company and I were out visiting accounts. I was the new guy so he was showing me the ropes. We get near Kensington and he says, "My mother lives near here. I'm gonna stop by and say hi". We get there he says to wait in the car. Over an hour goes by before he comes back. I tell him, "I started to ring the bell, I have to whiz." He says, "Glad you didn't, my mom wouldn't have let you in." Northeast Philly racism has nothing on the bitter poor white trash of Kensington


Philadelphia has a long history of intolerance for everybody, blacks, whites, Catholics, the Irish, the Polish, etc. You will always have people that find a reason to think they are better than someone else - no one likes being on the social bottom. In Philadelphia the history is of everyone fighting everyone for whatever blue-color job was available and fighting off the newest immigrant or group. Racism in Philadelphia is ingrained and it is not just white racism against black, it is also black against white and black against Asian. Everyone is fighting to survive on a smaller and smaller pie.