AFRAM 101 AA
Blog Assignment #1
November 20, 2015
King and Law
In the CNN documentary film “Rodney King Beating and Riots” they talked about how important it was for the people of color are just as equal of people that are non colored. King’s beating not only enraged the people of Los Angeles but all over the world. Rodney Glen King III was born April 2, 1965 and recently passed June 17, 2012. Live footage of his beating by Los Angeles police officers in 1991 was caught on camera and sparked riots after the acquittal of the four officers involved. This significance of this horrific event made me choose this because this all happened on a street called Foothill Blvd.
My high school were I went for four years and graduated from is just two blocks from where all this happened. I went all through high school without knowing this. I selected this video because situations like this are happening all over the world and are being over-looked. Just recently these situations involving police officer beatings and killings have sprouted rapidly. I am personally drained to this because my mom lived just blocks away from the court were the officers were pronounced innocent. My mother and her family were scared and had to barge all the doors so looters wouldn’t get in. They were scared but she over came it. Having these two incidents happen so close to me and my family without even realizing it made me drawn and interested in this topic.
In the CNN video it states, “I would of been happy if we just got one” (King). Don Lemon of CNN is documenting a real life back to the scene report on what exactly happened on the day of March 1991. When people all over the world started to realize what happen too King and the extent of his beating people were out-raged. This sparked and fueled a clash among Los Angeles police and citizens. King along with out-raged protesters demand that this incident be investigated more in detail.
In March of 1991 King was on his way home from a night out with friends. His night drastically turned for the worst when he was speeding on the 210 freeway. Many people wonder why didn’t he just stop but in this exclusive CNN video he says, “My construction company called me to come into work the next day after not having work for weeks.” If it weren’t for the man recording outside his apartment complex, two out of the four officers may have been pronounced innocent. This period was significant to African Americans because they have been dealing with many triumphs over the past century. Ordeals such as the Civil rights movement, Emit Till, Martin Luther kings assassination, even share cropping.
Having all these ordeals constantly happening to their people puts a strain and a chip on there shoulder on white people through this time. King was faced with a dilemma, he had to choose if making it to work which he hasn’t had for a while is more important than pulling over and
getting arrested. King knew that he would be arrested because he was on probation and had Marijuana in the car. Having those two reasons at the top of his head made his decision clearly, risk the chance of getting away and being able to work the next day at the construction company.
The Great Migration played a part to my cultural artifact by 6 million African Americans leaving to the mid west, northwest, and west in seek for work. King was seeking work because he hadn’t found a job and was scared of being pulled over and sent to jail. The Great Migration contributed to millions of people seeking jobs and bettering there families. Around this time the father was of much contribute when it came to families and taking care of elders. If a man couldn’t contribute to his family than he and the family would be forced to live in the street or a family member. An average white family brings in around $1600 while a African American family brings in around $700. This isn’t enough to sustain even food and home expenses.
Over time it evolved because in the early stages of the 21st century work was scarce and a recession was upon us. In my opinion it’s bad but not as bad in the early 1900’s. Depending on fathers and mothers working as well made marriages us easy. In the early 1990’s the leading cause of divorce was because of money and taking care of family. Marriages now a days are the similar as back than. The leading cause of divorce not only in African Americans but also White families all across the country.
My cultural product relates to what we’ve learned this period by labor work in the early 1900’s. In a Employment Segregation article, “The Cliometric Society”Vanderbilt University In 1940, the average annual earnings of black men were about 48 percent of the average annual earnings of white men. In 1980, the black- to-white male earnings ratio equalled 61 percent, an increase of 13 percentage points in four decades. (Robert A. Margo Page 1). Another reason why I chose this particular artifact is because King had a friend that work in construction and decided to help out King with a job. After weeks of not being called back they finally called him and let him know to come into work the next day.
This relates to the early 1900’s when most African American families were low income and living day to day. Through all these triumphs and not knowing if there children were going to be fed that night they kept there belief in faith, culture and traditions. Families would still find ways to make it too church on Sunday’s. They also took care of each other’s children or pick them up from school when needed be. Families would have baptism in near by lakes to prove to there children and families that faith would get them by. One hundred years later African American people are still sticking together using some of these common methods as a way to take care of each other. African American men would come to barbershops where they knew whatever they talked about would be only amongst them while getting a haircut. These were just some methods on how men never gave up on themselves and families. It made them feel more of a man.
Barry, Janis. 1987. “Women Production Work-ers: Low Pay and Hazardous Work.” American Economic Review 75:262-65.
Becker, Gary S. 1971. The Economics of Discrimination. 2d ed. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago.