Riot-remembrance events were held on Sunday to analyze, remember or discuss the 1992 frenzy that convulsed Los Angeles, after four police officers were acquitted of the videotaped beating of a black man at the end of a car chase.
“What happened to Rodney King should have never happened. And what we responded to should have never happened,” the Rev. Al Sharpton, the black activist who now hosts a daily show on MSNBC, told congregants during services at First AME Church. “Violence is not an option in fighting violence.”
The Anti-Defamation League released a joint statement of unity, signed by a coalition of organizations taking a stand against hatred, including the ACLU, the Los Angeles Police Commission, NAACP, Asian Pacific American Legal Center, CHIRLA and the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center.
“You’re going to hear a lot today, you’re going to read a lot today about how far we’ve come,” said Amanda Susskind, the regional director of the Anti-Defamation League, “how much more diverse this city is, how much more accepting we are of one another as communities. But we also realize that there’s still work to be done.”
Residents gathered at Manchester and Vermont to call for more economic development in the South Los Angeles area “so the community can come and celebrate and play and rejoice and come together,” said Norma Edith Garcia, a member of the board of directors of the LA Neighborhood Land Trust, a non-profit that supports urban parks.