Mark Wahlberg's hate crimes history resurfaces after Black Lives Matter post

Wikipedia entry on actor's history of racially motivated attacks appears to have been edited after backlash to his George Floyd tribute

Roisin O'Connor
Monday 08 June 2020 09:40
Aerial footage shows massive crowd at Black Lives Matter protest in Philadelphia

Mark Wahlberg has been accused of hypocrisy after a post about George Floyd caused the resurfacing of his history of hate crimes.

The Hollywood actor was responsible for a number of racially motivated attacks as a teenager in Boston during the Eighties.

In 1986, he was among a group of white teenagers who began hurling rocks and shouting “kill the n****s” at a group of mostly black students, until an ambulance driver intervened. The incident resulted in Wahlberg and two of his friend being issued a civil rights injunction.

In 1988, a then-16-year-old Wahlberg attacked two Vietnamese men while trying to steal beer near his home in Dorchester. He served 45 days of a two-year sentence for the assaults.

In 2016, he dropped a request to be pardoned for the 1988 attacks. Speaking to reporters at the Toronto International Film festival, he said he regretted asking for the pardon but felt “some good did come out of it” because he was able to meet one of his victims and apologise.

Following the killing of George Floyd and amid ongoing Black Lives Matter protests, Wahlberg posted a photo of Floyd on Instagram and wrote: “The murder of George Floyd is heartbreaking. We must all work together to fix this problem. I’m praying for all of us. God bless.”

His name began trending as a number of prominent figures pointed out the hypocrisy of his post.

Comic book artist Adam Ellis wrote: “Mark Wahlberg hurled rocks at black children while screaming “Kill the n*****s!” He beat a Vietnamese man unconscious and was charged for attempted murder. He’s committed at least 5 hate crimes. He only apologised while seeking a pardon 26 years later.”

Publicist Danny Deraney tweeted: “If you still don’t know what white privilege is, Mark Wahlberg committed hate crimes, has a Wikipedia section dedicated to it, and we never ever talk about it.”

Since the backlash, the title of the “Hate crimes” section on Wahlberg’s Wikipedia page has been edited to read, “Racial incidents”.

The Independent has contacted Wahlberg’s representatives for comment.

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