Very rarely is this violated. Most West Virginians are aware of the assassination of Sid "Two Gun" Hatfield on the Mingo County Courthouse steps many decades ago. Last month, a tourist visiting Baltimore found himself severely assaulted and humiliated almost on the steps of the court house. Here is the videotape:
Washington Examiner columnist Gregory Kane, a Baltimore native, flat out declared this morning that white tourists should avoid Baltimore. (Kane is black.)
Kane goes on to imply that there is a pattern of black mob violence on white individuals that has failed to excite a community response. And there have been no arrests.
There, I've said it. Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake won't be happy with that assessment. Nor, probably, will Baltimore City Council President Bernard Young and other elected officials.
But I'm not the one they have to sell on how safe Baltimore is for white tourists. That poor white guy in the now-notorious video that's gone viral is.
His name isn't known. Police have only identified him as a tourist from Arlington. According to news reports based on what the man told Baltimore police, he had left a downtown nightclub after drinking and found himself standing in front of the Mitchell Courthouse.
There's a certain, cruel irony in the site of this incident. The courthouse is named after Clarence Mitchell Jr., a Baltimore civil rights icon who was very influential in the civil rights movement. His work as an NAACP lobbyist on civil rights legislation earned him the nickname "the 101st Senator."
Mitchell was one of the most dignified people who ever lived. The white tourist who found himself in front of Mitchell Courthouse in the early hours of March 18 soon found himself surrounded by a most undignified group of black people.
I have a saying about my hometown: Baltimore is a place where 90 percent of the population is in bed by 11 p.m., but the remaining 10 percent who aren't, you wish the hell were...
Any second now, you know that Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton and National Association for the Advancement of Colored People President Benjamin Todd Jealous will descend on Baltimore demanding "justice" for this white tourist, right?
Just kidding. I live in this city, and I haven't seen this trio yet. I'm especially disappointed that I haven't heard from Jealous, since the NAACP's national headquarters are located right here in Baltimore.
Jealous managed to make his way down to Sanford, Fla., to protest the lack of charges against George Zimmerman in the Trayvon Martin slaying. He has yet to make the 20-minute drive from NAACP national headquarters down to the site of where the tourist was attacked.
Remember, it was in front of the Mitchell Courthouse, named for an NAACP giant. You'd think Jealous would be incensed that the tourist's attackers so callously shamed the name of Clarence Mitchell Jr., if not about the attack itself.
Jealous talked long and loud about racial profiling in the Trayvon Martin case. But wasn't this poor tourist racially profiled? Was he not singled out, beaten, robbed, humiliated and degraded because of his race?
And he wasn't the first one. There have been several incidents of black hoodlums victimizing white tourists in downtown Baltimore. They just haven't received the news coverage Trayvon Martin's killing has. I wonder why that is?