**Updates** (Feb 22) on AC Transit Fight in Oakland Intvs w/ Epic Beard (Tom) & Blackman (Coolio)


*Update* Feb 22 2010

Wild 94.9 the radio station tracked down Michael (Coolio) who got pummeled by Epic Beard aka Tom Slick.. Lots of eye opening information which has since been confirmed.. For starters Michael is not a murderer or on parole. he’s 50 years old and has some other things to reveal..

Apparently this racially charged fight between ‘Willie Nelson’ and ‘Coolio’ on an AC transit bus in Oakland has taken off and has become a national story… Below is a recent article and I am including more recent videos including one with the white dude… who we now know as Tom Slick aka Tom Bruso a former Vietnam vet who spent 14 years in prison and has a history of mental problems.

Aside from the salacious nature of this incident is a larger picture which has resulted in Bruso being heralded as a hero in spite of his reputation primarily because he beat a ‘Black guy who came across as a thug and for many this is a victory and some sort of vindication… Out of control Black inner city youth have become more frightening to the average American of all races including other Blacks, then Al Qaeda, organized crime  and vicious drug cartels. The image of the Black bogey man has been ingrained in the minds of Americans since the days of slavery. It came to fruition with Haitian slaves overthrowing their French slave masters resulting in Thomas Jefferson putting in place crippling policies that have continued to this day. It came to fruition with slaves turned preacher turned insurgent like Nat Turner resulting in government officials crafting laws and keeping special tabs on ‘Black troublemakers’ which has continued throughout the centuries under different names including Cointel-Pro… In short what should’ve been a simple fight has come to represent so much more within many people’s consciousness.

-Davey D-

Here’s the interview with Tom Slick aka Vietnam Tom


** New interview** (Feb 22 2010


Below is the interview w/ Michael.. The Brother who got into fight with Tom Slick... Seems like this story unfolds even more. Michael insist that Tom made a racist remark. Brother man also says he’s not on parole or a murderer…


Here’s a national news article and accompanying videos on this..


(Feb. 19) — From the YouTube video, this much is clear: It was a comment about shoe shining that sent the ugly set of events spiraling out of control, culminating in a racially charged fist fight between an older white man and a younger black man on an Oakland, Calif., bus Monday afternoon.

By this afternoon, more than 30,000 people had watched the fight unfold on YouTube. But the exact series of events leading up to the fight remained unclear. Because while the drama of the encounter — down to the racial epithets and the blood on the bus’s plastic blue seats — was captured on camera, the most basic facts of the event were not.

The video is confusing, incomplete. So viewers were largely left to piece together the facts of the bloody fight on their own, which they did through an interesting mix of competing YouTube videos, reporting and blogs.

According to witnesses, including Iyanna Washington, the college student who recorded the fight, the white man, who was identified by The Oakland Tribune as 67-year-old Thomas Bruso, taunted the younger black man and asked him to shine his shoes. “The white guy was asking the black guy for a shoeshine,” Washington told CBS. “And I guess the black guy took it as a racist comment, like, ‘Why’s a black guy have to spit shine your shoes?'”

In the video, the two men continue to exchange insults. Finally, the black man throws a punch. The white man then begins to pummel him until he exits the bus shouting “He hit me!” and leaves the black man on the bus floor with a bloody nose.

AC Transit Spokesman Clarence Johnson told CBS that both men were taken to the hospital and later released with minor injuries. He said the black man had a bloody nose, and the white man had been off of his meds.

“We hate for this sort of thing to happen,” Johnson said. “Our buses transport 236,000 passengers on a daily basis and these types of things are not commonplace.”

On YouTube, competing narratives of the fight began to take hold.

Racist comments, lots of them, began to pop up on the YouTube page. “Typical day in the Urban Jungle,” one commenter wrote. “Typical N*****. Always so full of hate and anger,” another wrote. “This is a perfect example as to why racism will never die. They do it to themselves. Won’t they ever learn?”

Zennie Abraham, a blogger for the San Francisco Chronicle, said the debate surrounding the video was “dominated by racists and nuts cases:”

“With all of that some observers have proven they’re just as much animals as the men in the video. The talk of some is to crown the old white man as some kind of hero, when it’s obvious he’s some kind of nut job. Some people report the AC Transit Bus Fight as if it’s a victory for whites against some boogie man who’s black. All of this has become a discussion seemingly dominated by racists and nuts cases. Since racism is a mental illness, it’s hard to tell them apart.”

Then, another video emerged. Bruso, the older man, had been featured in a hit YouTube video before, when he was arrested at an Oakland A’s baseball game in August for disorderly conduct and police used a Taser on him. “This guy is epic,” one commenter said.


Tuesday, Iyanna Washington, the student who taped the bus fight, posted an apology on YouTube.

“I am the filmer of the video AC transit police bus fight,” she said facing into the camera. “Lately I’ve been getting really hammered by the bloggers and the harsh YouTube and news critics about the video so I want to first clear a few things up.”

Washington denied rumors that she had stolen anything from the older man’s bag and apologized to “anyone who took offense to any part of this video.”

But she had another message for those watching as well.

“It’s a sad thing, but this is real life; people actually, you know, people say and do things like this every day,” she said. “It’s just the parts that we catch on camera that really get seen.”


Return to Davey D’s Hip Hop Corner