Riots- Rough notes
Riots were a series of riots, looting’s, arson and civil disturbances that occurred in Los Angels on April 29th 1992, lasting 6 days through to May 5th. They were triggered by the acquittal of police officers in a trial regarding a videotaped police brutality incident. 4 police officers were caught on amateur video beating an unarmed African- American motorist-Rodney King. The case was taken to trial and the four (white police officers) were acquitted of any wrong doing (by a 12 person Jury: 10 whites and no African Americans).
The Rodney King Incident TLD only trigger the most destructive US call disturbance f the 20th century It created outrage In the press and It triggered a national debate on police brutality. In one way the riots did what hip hop had been trying to do for years, particularly since 1 988 with the birth of gangs rap – make the America which existed outside of the Ghetto’s see what was really going on.
According to the California Economic Development Department between April 1 992 and April 1 992 108,00 local Jobs vanished- Black and Latino communities were hard hit with a combined 29. 7 % in poverty and more than 13% unemployed. In depressed South Central only 45% of African-American males were employed African-Americans have by far the lowest rate of two-parent families in Southern California “Gangs are never going’ to die out. You all going’ to get us Jobs? 016-year-old Grape Street Crisp -quoted In Mike Davis (historian) book City of Quartz Bloods and Crisp are the two mall gangs In LA at the time Black gangs Bloods (Red) Crisp (Blue) very territorial, street violence, drive by shootings, violent nature, Influenced youth local youth were bored with nothing to do drugs, guns, cars etc the local demographic leading up to and during the riots was ripe for civil unrest Juvenile and adult arrest rates- analyzing this source: reliable, police released these were angry and acting out, there was no doubt that there was a violent crime nature brewing in LA “What we have is people sick of the police and that’s when you have a revolution in your hands” -Ice Cube Why were people sick of the police ? People were angry with the actions they took in order to deal with gang violence in LA: one of the main factors in the growing anger amongst communities particular black and Latino ones was the constant racial profiling and targeting of black and Hipic youths ?> by the LAPPED. Operation Hammer for example was an initiative employed by the LAPPED in order to crack down on gang violence. Their aim was to arrest and incarcerate “suspected gang members” before they could commit a crime. What this objective led to was mass arrests of youths becoming common and as a consequence a large number of those arrested were never charged ?> leaving many personally victimized by the police force ?> greater number of hostility towards the police. *Complaints against police brutality increased by 33% in the period of 1984 and 1989 but only 1% of those complaints were ever followed up.
In 1982 for example following a rash of LAPPED ‘chuckhole killings of young black men in custody Chief Gates advanced the theory that the deaths were the faults of the victims’ racial anatomy and not excessive police force and I quote ” We may be finding that in some Blacks when the chuckhole is applied the veins or arteries do not open up as fast as they do on normal people. ” Many statements like these were constantly made in the media e. G “Tonight we pick ‘me up for anything and everything. OLAP spokesman (9 April 1988)” “l think people believe that the only strategy we have is to put a lot of police officers n the street and harass people and make arrests for inconsequential kinds of things. Well, that’s part of the strategy, no question about it. Chief Gate” The use of the phrases “normal people”, tonight we pick them up for anything, Harass people etc is inflammatory in a society which is already deeply affected by issues of poverty, lack of education, lack of Jobs, broken families and prejudice. White perspective ?> the general perspective of the white community LA TIMES: Thank you very much for the interview with Police Chief Daryl Gates and County Sheriff Sherman Block. You gave them a fair chance to explain crime and gangs. Much too often the media make these two important law-enforcement gentlemen out as being callous and insensitive to the community’s needs. Fortunately, we got to see the real side to these heroes who are trying to protect us as best they can. JASON M.
NONSOCIAL Glendale proud of the policing strategies they implemented saw the gang culture as an epidemic Chief Gates saw the Rodney King verdict as wrong because the police officers “stepped out of line” but in an interview still tried to defend them, giving them Monnet to beating Rodney King up Sick and tired of gang bangers ( to put it simply) Saw gangs rap as a threat to the youth: they wanted to shut them up Worked with the government and publicly criticized groups like N. W. A tried to arrest as many as they could they were scared of “the hood” they believed that there were a few corrupt individuals in the LAPPED but the whole LAPPED wasn’t corrupted but why and what was the effect ?
The police perspective generally was a reaction to what the community were saying and feeling (white particularly and sometimes other aces), people were scared to sit on dining tables in case they would get shot. While it gave a sense of protection (“protect and serve”) to some parts of the communities, others felt victims, the LAPPED insisted they were not racist, Just careful. The perspective of black youths was represented through the art form of gangs rap ?> a voice for the voiceless. Police brutality is clearly a common theme throughout many gangs rap songs, the actions of police led to a lot of resentment towards police as seen in the song “Buck that Police” ?Analyses a few lyrics from songs and family detachment.
Buck that police” ?> first indicator of low education -derogatory label is used on themselves- maybe that’s the point (Amiga) -constant references to the police ?> the broken relationship between the communities and police “Authority to kill a minority’ ?> not literally kill but destroy the foundations of their culture (police brutality ?> people are angry) -the whole last part of the song links back to Operation Hammer ? > why it made people angry (searching people because they were black, prejudices etc) Buck that police in particular was the theme song for the riots as the lyrics spoke to he people-resonating with what they were feeling Gangs rap artists like Ice- T and NNW, saw themselves as street reporters most of the situations in their rap is secondary accounts of things, personae taken on and it’s hardly personal situations It neither glorifies nor says “it’s k” for these things to be happening but then from a black perspective- is what the LAPPED doing k ?