Bruce’s Beach and Restorative Justice

The first time I heard about the tragedy of Bruce’s Beach was in an episode of Last Week Tonight about housing discrimination

A black family’s beach property was siezed with eminent domain, and now has become a vacation spot for middle class White people.

That story is part of a racist pattern I learned about in the book “The Color of Law”. I learned that housing discrimination was not just official federal policy, but was more pervasive, permanent, and recent than most of us know.

So it’s great news that Bruce’s Beach is being returned to the Bruce family:

“Ninety-eight years after California officials seized prime oceanfront land from a Black family that had built a thriving community there, a Los Angeles County commission voted Tuesday to return the property to the original owners’ family.

The descendants of Willa and Charles Bruce, who purchased the land for $1,225 in 1912 and built it into a seaside resort for Black families, will retake ownership of Bruce’s Beach in the city of Manhattan Beach. The land had been taken from them in 1924 under the guise of eminent domain.”

Curtis Bunn, NBC News

What a week for restoritive justice