Can the police build trust, respect, and communication with the black community in Cincinnati? Or, will the black community continue to fear the police as the face of an unjust and oppressive system?

The three government panelists and the three civil rights panelists were poles apart at The Enquirer’s community forum, “Police and the Black Community, One Year After Sam Dubose’s Death,” July 14 at the New Prospect Baptist Church in Roselawn. Some in the audience of several hundred were angry, sometimes jeering or shouting over panelists to express their views.

On July 17, 1944, when the war in the Pacific was raging, 320 sailors and civilians died instantly and 390 were injured at a naval base north of San Francisco when 5,000 tons of munitions–including 1,000-pound aerial bombs, 40 mm artillery shells, incendiary and fragmentation bombs, and anti-submarine depth charges–exploded while being loaded onto transport ships.

The blast registered 3.4 on the Richter scale and could be felt 450 miles away. The explosion was the worst stateside disaster of World War II.

Most of the dead and wounded sailors were African-American enlisted men. They accounted for 15 percent of all African-American naval casualties during the war.