Sunday, June 7, 2009

Burning Down The House

The thing that struck me about the L.A. riots after the Rodney King verdict was how foolish these people were.
On the first night, I drove around the area with a girl who looked like Angela Bassett - getting a few thumbs-up from the native Angelinos.
People would just look in your car and somehow issue an emergency "Ghetto Pass" for that day only.
By the time I made it to my cousin's house (near Raymond and Alondra), the nearby streets were on fire.
But how wise was it to burn down the businesses on which you rely?
How wise is it to tear down what you have no ability to replace?
Who suffered worse - those who were being protested (Well... maybe Reginald Denny) or those who were doing the protesting?
Whose quality of life improved?


FreeMan said...

Growing up as a kid in High School (pretty much down the street from your cousin) I have a different take on it. A lot of the people who were serving us were assholes and payback is a biatch! People say they burned down their neighborhood but there are more than 1 supermarket in any area of Los Angeles and Compton. Most folk in LA go to at least 2 or 3 supermarkets so it wasn't a total dumb move.

I think people think poor folk rely on these businesses but there is no reliance at all. There is limited choices and if that choice is taken away we'll go to another place. It's not like we are going to sit there and starve. Look being limited in services just makes the way you protest different. If you have money you go to other places when you don't when the time comes for payback you burn the shit down!

uglyblackjohn said...

@ FreeMan - Yeah, that was a drive. By the time I had made it from W 81st & Vermont to my other cousins house (Raymond & Alondra), I didn't have to watch the news.

But really, this post was meant as to be allegorical.
I was thinking that the people doing the burning still don't own the corners stores.
What was the point?

FreeMan said...

A powerful act by powerless people!

DPizz said...

One point might be that the Fed Gov probably would not have stepped in and prosecuted the cops at the Fed level had the riots not occurred.

Also, as far as I can see from the vantage of my Aunt and Uncle' house (83rd and Normandie)there has been a lot of development since then. Now there's more stores than just ABC Supermarket.

uglyblackjohn said...

@ DPizz - Ummm... Good point.