The Blackstonian: ‘To Pardon Mark Wahlberg Is to Pardon Racism’

The actor's crimes from the 1980s include the use of racial slurs against black residents in his Dorchester neighborhood.

A website that caters to the black community of Boston was quick to point out that actor Mark Wahlberg’s request to be pardoned by Governor Deval Patrick for crimes he committed back in the late 1980s go beyond a simple bullying case carried out at the hands of a young and troubled kid with a bad attitude.

Upon hearing the news that Wahlberg was looking to be forgiven for his role in assaulting a man with a wooden club and punching another man in the face, back in 1988 during a Dorchester Avenue robbery, The Blackstonian drudged up other allegations about the the burger joint-owning Hollywood star—namely, his excessive use of the “n-word,” and the harassment of black residents at the time.

“Marky Mark Wahlberg’s racist past should not be pardoned. To pardon Wahlberg would be another affirmation that the rich and the famous are treated differently from ‘regular’ people. Wahlberg has never publicly acknowledged the particular racist element of his crimes,” wrote the editor of The Blackstonian, Jamarhl Crawford.

The incidents The Blackstonian referred to in their blog post Friday date back to before Wahlberg even committed the assault that he’s now trying to have absolved. According to court documents from the Attorney General’s office, which were posted by the website The Smoking Gun, Wahlberg was named in a Superior Court civil action case as a suspect in a series of racially charged crimes.

The documents state that Wahlberg was present, and allegedly participated in throwing rocks at black students who were on a field trip in Savin Hill. A day prior to that incident, the Attorney General at the time claimed that Wahlberg was reportedly one of three kids in his neighborhood that followed those same black students down a street, telling them that they didn’t like “n*****s” in their neighborhood.

Wahlberg had a civil injunction entered against him for the incident, which he signed, and the assault that occurred two years later, which he is now asking to have pardoned, was a violation of that injunction.

“Perhaps at some point in the future, Wahlberg can show himself worthy of a pardon after working towards restoring his image within the communities of color he offended and so viciously attacked,” said Crawford in an editor’s note on The Blackstonian. “In the meantime a pardon for Wahlberg is not necessary. His criminal record, unlike so many others, doesn’t seem to be preventing him from getting good jobs and making a living.”

With the entire country grappling with the racial divides in their respective communities, after two grand juries decided not to indict white policemen who killed unarmed black men while on duty, the results of which set off a firestorm of massive protests calling for equality and accountability nationwide, Wahlberg’s choice to place himself in the limelight seems poorly timed.

Regardless, Wahlberg, who hasn’t addressed the racial claims pointed out by The Blackstonian‘s staff, still sees a pardon as a good example of showing young people that they can turn their lives around.

“The more complex answer is that receiving a pardon would be a formal recognition that I am not the same person that I was on the night of April 8, 1988. It would be formal recognition that someone like me can receive official public redemption if he devotes himself to personal improvement and a life of good works,” Wahlberg wrote.