Saturday, April 28, 2012
The Los Angeles riots: 20 years later
I'm sure many readers remember the Los Angeles riots of 1992, including the infamous Reginald Denny incident, which was featured on TV news reports all over the world. (I watched it in South Africa, and remember thinking that LA was getting more and more like some parts of South Africa in terms of civil unrest!) They began on April 29th, 20 years ago tomorrow (Sunday).
I've read a number of reports of what it was like to be in the middle of those riots. Perhaps the most graphic account (although some have questioned its veracity in parts) was recently republished on the Bonnie Gadsden blog, in ten parts. Here are the links:
News media are bringing us retrospective reports and commentary to mark the anniversary. For those who want to view them, there are many video clips about the riots on YouTube.
I can't help thinking that the recent decision to charge George Zimmerman with murder for the shooting of Trayvon Martin was motivated, at least in part, by a desire to head off community anger and prevent a repeat of the LA 1992 riots in Florida. If Mr. Zimmerman is found not guilty, I won't take any bets that the urban underclass won't engage in similar conduct. They haven't changed much . . .
(That remark, by the way, is not racist. Video of the 1992 riots demonstrates clearly that looting and mob violence were not confined to only one race; although the majority of participants appeared to be Black, there were also Whites and Asians involved. I'm sure that if similar problems arise in Florida, the same will be true there. Membership of the 'underclass' is a matter of attitude and ingrained culture, far more than skin color.)
At least 54 people died in the 1992 riots, and thousands were injured. Let's remember the victims at this time, and pray that there won't be any more, anytime soon, in this troubled and divided nation.