I grew up, attended college and worked in the City of Brotherly Love, and remember it had the usual line-up of corrupt politicians. However, one tough, loud-mouthed guy emerged from South Philly’s Italian neighborhood to become an effective, almost-honest mayor. After being an effective cop who rose to police commissioner, he served as top dog in city hall from 1972 to 1980.
Now, 25 years after his death, groups labeling Rizzo a racist want his statue near City Hall to come crashing down. This puts him in the class with others on the list of evil racists and slave owners, including Egyptian pharaohs, George Washington, Stonewall Jackson, Al Jolson, Scarlett O’Hara, Robert E. Lee and Simon Legree.
Bigoted or not, Francis L. Rizzo had something in common with at least two other famous politicians. Like Ron (Reagan) and Don (Trump), Frank was a lifelong Democrat until he matured into a Republican in his later years.