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The Rodney King Riots and the Reason for Good People to be Armed

Contributed by Alex Shrugged

Last year, after a high speed chase, Rodney King stopped his car and seemed to be resisting arrest. (Actually, he was drunk and using poor judgement.) He was brutally beaten with night sticks by LAPD officers while attempting to take him into custody. This was all caught on tape, and four officers were charged with assault. (I've reviewed the tape, and I can only guess what the officers were thinking. Some guesses would exonerate the officers and others would not.) Apparently the jury believed that the officers acted correctly, so they walk free. The black community is outraged. Thus begins 6 days of rioting in the Los Angeles area. Reginald Denny is pulled out of his truck and beaten to within an inch of his life, but he isn't the only one. The police cannot stop them. Society has totally broken down in one of the largest cites in the world. [1] [2] [3] [4]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
I was many miles away during the riot, but I grew up in the LA area and I had worked in South Central LA. (Actually, I was the only one my company could send there and not get beaten up.) I watched the tension build over the years. The Rodney King beating simply set it off. In the media, black people were portrayed as the underdog always taken advantage of. Koreans were portrayed as greedy, distrustful people who ran grocery stores only to take advantage of the poor. Frankly, the complaints sounded a lot like the ones made against Jews. (Alex Shrugged is Jewish.) Koreans knew they were a target, so when the riots began, they were armed and ready to protect their own as they should. As I said, I was miles away, but my daughter was threatened with a gun that day. I realized that if my home was attacked that the only protection I could offer was to block the door with my dead body. I was willing to do that, but it would have been better to be armed. I am a good man who needs a weapon to protect his family when the police cannot help. When is that? When things are worst. Not when things are best. [5] [6] [7]


Contributed by Southpaw Ben


My Take by Southpaw Ben

We Want No Accents Here!

People's Bank wants good language skills in employees who interface with the public which is why Phanna Xieng has been denied a promotion to a job slot he wants. The job calls for good English skills. It also calls for telling irate customers why the People's Bank isn't going to lend them any more money. Keeping a customer while telling them "NO" requires a full command of the English language. Phanna is so traumatized by this rejection that the court awards him $389,000. He's feeling better already. In another case, parents want to fire an English teacher because he cannot speak English without an accent. In fact, the parents can barely understand him. The state education commissioner accuses the parents of bigotry. Money is sent to the school district to educate the parents on the wonders of bilingual education... not for a more comprehensible English teacher. [8] [9] [10] [11]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
Have you ever called up tech support and got a fellow with such a strong accent that you can barely get through the call? When I call tech support it is because I am at the end of my rope. I don't want to struggle through a heavy accent as well. This is not bigotry. Many of my relatives have accents. I love them. I do not want them to take my tech support calls. One company tried a solution to this problem of accents by professionally prerecording several canned responses to questions they get a hundred times a day. They added some connective comments and laughter to make the responses sound spontaneous. The support tech listens to the question, hits the button and instant communication is had. But when a caller goes off script, the response is not quite right, and the caller gets a creepy feeling.
"Are you a robot?"
(laughter) "A what?"
"Are you a robot?"
"OK. Then say... 'I am not a robot'."
"I am a real person. Is this connection OK?"
"The connection is great. Say... 'I am a robot', and I'll continue the call."
click... buzzzzz. [12]

Notable Births

  • Diwakar Vaish: Developer of the first mind-controlled wheelchair. It can be operated by people suffering from paralysis. [13]
  • Miley Cyrus: Daughter of Billy Ray Cyrus, starred in Disney's Hanna Montana, and now a singer in her own right. [14] [15]
  • Taylor Lautner: Jacob Black (the werewolf) in Twilight. [16]
  • Kaya Scodelario: Teresa in The Maze Runner. [17]

This Year in Film

  • Disney's Aladdin: It will get complaints from the Arab community. (Hey, I thought The Prince of Egypt was all goofed up too, but it was a fun movie.--alexshrugged.) [30]
  • A Few Good Men: Tom Cruise plays a Navy lawyer defending 2 Marines from the charge of murder. (Excellent film.--alexshrugged) [30]
  • Sister Act: Whoopee Goldberg escapes gangsters by disguising herself as a nun. Hilarity and singing ensue. [30]
  • And....: Wayne's World, My Cousin Vinny, and Freejack starring a credible Mick Jagger. [30]

This Year in TV

  • The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Johnny Carson has retired. [31]
  • The Rush Limbaugh TV Show: Rush says it takes too much time compared to radio. [31]
  • Ross Perot buys TV time to explain his plan to fix America: He is running for President mostly to block President Bush (the Elder) from a second term. [31]
  • Sinéad O'Connor rips up a picture of Pope John Paul II on Saturday Night Live.: (Fine, but I tune in to laugh, Sinéad. Shut up and sing.--alexshrugged) [31]

This Year in Music

  • Smells Like Teen Spirit: Nirvana. "I feel contagious / Entertain us." (Oddly, I felt like banging my head against a wall, but I liked it.--alexshrugged)[32]
  • End of the Road: Boyz II Men. "Although we've come to the end of the road, still I can't let go". (A beautiful wall of sound.--alexshrugged) [32]
  • Tears in Heaven: Eric Clapton sings in memory of his son who died last year at 4-years old. (The boy fell out of a window, 53 stories to his death.) [32]

This Year in Video Games

  • Kirby's Dream Land is released for the Nintendo Gameboy: . [33]
  • Wolfenstein 3D popularizes the 1st person shooter game: . [33]
  • Sega's Night Trap is pulled from the market for its mature content: (Why do they call it mature when it seems immature?--alexshrugged). [33]
  • Philips' Compact Disc Interactive is a flop: (I may have contributed to it's failure. I did early R&D on CDi, and found that an IBM PC game was about on par with it. That may have led to game developers passing it by.--alexshrugged [33] [34] [35] [36]

In Other News

  • Stella Liebeck sues McDonald's for selling her HOT COFFEE: They should have warned her. FYI, water is wet and the ground can be extremely hard at times. [37].
  • Randy Weaver surrenders to federal authorities: After an 11 day standoff, his wife and son are dead. It was all caused by a typo in a letter informing him to appear in court. (The court date was incorrect, but how would he know that?) When he didn't show up for court, federal officials ASSUMED that he was resisting government authority. Bang. Bang. You're dead. [38].
  • Ross Perot ends his presidential campaign: (As I recall, he blamed President Bush for interfering with his daughter's wedding.--alexshrugged)
  • Ross Perot restarts his presidential campaign: (He may have added enough confusion to throw the election to Bill Clinton.--alexshrugged)

Natural Disasters

  • A 6.7 magnitude earthquake hits Turkey, killing 652: [39].
  • A 7.7 magnitude earthquake hits Nicaragua, killing 116: It creates a tsunami of almost 30 feet high. [40].
  • Hurricane Andrew hits south Florida, killing 23: .
  • A 5.8 magnitude earthquake hits Cairo, killing 545: [41].
  • A 7.8 magnitude earthquake hits Indonesia, killing 2,500: [42].

Unnatural Disasters

  • A Japanese exchange student is shot dead when he knocks on the wrong door: The shooter is acquitted. [43] (As I recall, the kid didn't understand when the shooter yelled "FREEZE!" Later Japanese news reports included a lesson on what the word "FREEZE" means in this context.--alexshrugged )
  • The Archives of Terror are discovered: They document the fates of thousands secretly tortured, and killed during Operation Condor, a project to eliminate communism in South America, partially funded by the CIA.
  • A massive sewer explosion in Guadalajara kills 215: [44]. (I've seen a TV special about this explosion, and it was due to a series of construction errors that allowed a fuel leak to build up.--alexshrugged)


  • Microsoft releases Windows 3.1: This is the operating system that will last, but Microsoft already owns more than 85% of this market.
  • Manufacturing of silicone breast implants halts: The perception is that something is wrong with them, and it takes a lot of money to defend one's self from multiple lawsuits, so Dow Corning stops making them.

The Dissolution of Yugoslavia and the Bosnian War

  • Bosnia and Herzegovina declares independence from Yugoslavia Serb troops mass in Sarajevo against Bosnia. [46].
  • The US recalls its Ambassador to Yugoslavia: This is a protest of the military aggression against Bosnia and Herzegovina.
  • UN peacekeepers withdraw from Sarajevo: (I thought they were supposed to be keeping the peace.--alexshrugged).
  • The UN imposes economic sanctions against Yugoslavia: (The UN already had guys with guns there. Wasn't that sanction enough?--alexshrugged)
  • President Bush asks the UN for military intervention in Bosnia and Herzegovina: (Uh...OK, but I suspect he was really asking for permission to invade. He should have asked Congress... not the UN.--alexshrugged).

The Dissolution of Czechoslovakia

The Gulf War Aftermath

  • Iraq is ordered to destroy a nuclear weapons manufacturing complex at Al Atheer: .
  • Iraq refuses a UN inspection team: (As I recall, Saturday Night Live mocked UN inspectors because they were so easily misdirected.--alexshrugged)
  • Iraq allows US inspectors 20 days later, but they find nothing: (Golly. You think maybe Iraq moved everything?--alexshrugged)
  • A US F-16 shoots down an Iraqi MiG-25 violating the Iraqi no-fly zones (This sounds like a violation of the ceasefire agreement. The outgoing President Bush leaves it for Bill Clinton.--alexshrugged).

The UN Invasion of Somalia

  • The UN approves humanitarian aid for Somalia: Aid is misdirected by rebel forces so a UN military force is assembled to ensure that food aid gets to the hungry. [47].
  • US military forces land in Somalia: As they take the beach, reporters take their picture. Say, "Cheese!"
  • President Bush spends New Years with the troops in Somalia: (For a good book on the US intervention in Somalia, read "Battle Ready" by Tom Clancy and General Tony Zinni.--alexshrugged) [48]

The New Russian Federation

  • Boris Yeltsin ends Russian price controls: Prices rise to their market value instead of the government setting an artificial price. [49]
  • Russia re-targets its nuclear weapons away from US and allied cities. The US and allies re-target away from Russia in exchange. (This is mostly for show, but OK.--alexshrugged)
  • Bush and Yeltsin meet at Camp David to declare the end of the Cold War.
  • Russia releases the flight data recorder of Korean Airlines Flight 007: The Soviets shot it down in 1983. (Reading the transcript, it looks like a mistake.--alexshrugged)

All Else

  • President George H. W. Bush vomits into the lap of the Prime Minister of Japan: He then fainted.
  • Japan apologizes for forcing Korean women into sexual slavery during World War II See "Comfort Women".
  • The European Union is founded: [50].
  • Paul Tsongas pulls out, assuring a Bill Clinton victory in the Democrat primaries: .
  • Half a million march on Washington, D. C. to support abortion rights: [51].
  • Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega is convicted of assisting the Colombian cocaine cartel: .
  • John Gotti is sentenced to life without parole for the murder of Paul Castellano: A TV reality show "Growing up Gotti" in 2004 will follow his daughter's life.
  • Tailhook scandal: The Secretary of the Navy resigns: It looks like a purge of the military going on after this sexual harassment scandal.
  • The Supreme Court upholds Roe v. Wade in a 5-4 decision: See Planned Parenthood v. Casey. (When a decision is that close, the decision is not really decided if you know what I mean.--alexshrugged)
  • Oil companies Amoco and Unocal restructure to eliminate 10,000 jobs: (If there is not enough work, then fine, but workers need to prepare for these sort of shifts in their personal economy.--alexshrugged)
  • 350,000 people rally in Berlin to protest right-wing violence against immigrants: The leftists throw stones and eggs. (Uh... yeah. Bad messaging there.--alexshrugged)
  • Prince Charles and Princess Diana announce their separation: Apparently, the Prince has a mistress.

This Year in Wikipedia

Year 1992, Wikipedia.

See Also


  1. RODNEY KING BEATING VIDEO Full length footage SCREENER - YouTube (1992). Retrieved on 26 April 2017.
  2. Rodney King Beating, ABC News coverage - YouTube (1992). Retrieved on 26 April 2017.
  3. LA Riots, Raw footage of Reginald Denny beatings - April 29, 1992 - YouTube. Retrieved on 26 April 2017. “The attack on Reginald Denny was an incident on April 29, 1992 that occurred at the start of the Los Angeles riots in South Central Los Angeles. This is raw footage from the day including rare images before and after.”
  4. Florence and Normandy LA riot beatings - YouTube. Retrieved on 26 April 2017.
  5. Korean Store Owners Defend Their Property With Firearms During Rodney King Riots - YouTube. Retrieved on 26 April 2017.
  6. LA Riots - Armed store owners deter rioters - YouTube. Retrieved on 26 April 2017.
  7. Koreatown during the 1992 riots Rough Cuts - YouTube. Retrieved on 26 April 2017.
  8. Pinker, Steven. The Language Instinct: How the Mind Creates Language. New York: HarperPerennial. 2007. ISBN 9780062032522. (BOOK) Quote: "In 1992 an ordinance was proposed that would have banned the hiring of any immigrant teacher who 'speaks with an accent' in--I am not making this up--Westfield, Massachusetts. An incredulous woman wrote to the Boston Globe recalling how her native New England teacher defined 'homonym' using the example orphan and often. Another amused reader remembered incurring the teacher's wrath when he spelled 'cuh-rée-uh' k-o-r-e-a and 'cuh-rée-ur' c-a-r-e-e-r, rather than vice versa. The proposal was quickly withdrawn."
  9. Olson, Walter. Reasonable Doubts: Say What? - Reason.com. November 1997. 2014 [last update] Quote: " Consider the controversy that engulfed the town of Westfield, Massachusetts, a couple of years ago.

    The town's school system had assigned instructor Ramon Vega to an experimental program where he'd teach language skills to first- and second-graders. Some parents had trouble understanding Vega's conversation themselves and worried that their kids might have the same problem. Four hundred of them proceeded to sign a petition asking that instructors in early grades be proficient in 'the accepted and standard use of pronunciation.'

    When word reached Boston, all hell broke loose. The state education commissioner charged the parents with 'bigotry.' The National Education Association rushed through a resolution at its annual meeting decrying disparate treatment on the basis of 'pronunciation'--quite a switch from the old days when teachers used to be demons for correctness on that topic. A foundation voted a $100,000 grant to be sent to the town for more bilingual programs to enlighten the populace."

  10. Chavez, Linda. Out of the Barrio: Toward a New Politics of Hispanic Assimilation. BasicBooks. ISBN 9780465054312. 
  11. Anti-Discrimination Ad Absurdum. New York Post (August 24, 1997). Retrieved on 26 April 2017. “Accent cases started making headlines in 1992 when a state court upheld a verdict against Seattle-based People's National Bank, which didn't think Cambodian-born Phanna Xieng had strong enough language skills for a post where he'd interact with irate customers turned down for loans. Xieng's lawyers brought in medical experts, who claimed the shock of not getting promoted was so psychologically traumatic it would prevent their client from working for at least five years. Presto: a $389,000 award.”
  12. samantha west (robot girl) phone call - YouTube. Retrieved on 26 April 2017.
  13. Mind Controlled Wheelchair - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “The A-SET Mind Controlled Wheelchair is a mind-machine interfacing device that uses thought (neural impulses) to command the motorised wheelchair's motion. It has been designed by Diwakar Vaish, Head of Robotics and Research at A-SET Training & Research Institutes. It is the world's first in production neurally controlled wheelchair. The wheelchair is of great importance to patients suffering from Locked-in Syndrone (LIS) in which a patient is aware but cannot move or communicate verbally due to complete paralysis of nearly all voluntary muscles in the body except the eyes. It can also be used in case of Muscular Dystrophy, a disease that weakens the musculoskeletal system and hampers locomotion (walking or moving). The wheelchair is priced at nearly $ 3,000 USD ( 3,00,000 INR)”
  14. 14.0 14.1 1992 Births - Wikipedia (1992).
  15. Miley Cyrus - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “she became a teen idol starring as the character Miley Stewart in the Disney Channel television series Hannah Montana in 2006. Her father Billy Ray Cyrus also starred in the show. She subsequently signed a recording contract with Hollywood Records, and her debut studio album Meet Miley Cyrus (2007) was certified triple-platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) having shipped over three million units.”
  16. Taylor Lautner - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “an American actor, model and martial artist. Lautner is known for playing Jacob Black in The Twilight Saga film series based on the novels of the same name by Stephenie Meyer.”
  17. Kaya Scodelario - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 25 April 2017. “She gained wider recognition for her starring role as Teresa Agnes in dystopian science-fiction thriller The Maze Runner (2014), which garnered her a third Glamour Award nomination for NEXT Breakthrough and a Teen Choice Award nomination for Choice Movie Actress: Action.”
  18. Daryl Sabara - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “Daryl Christopher Sabara (born June 14, 1992) is an American actor, perhaps best known for playing Juni Cortez in the Spy Kids film series, as well as for a variety of television and film appearances, including Generator Rex, Wizards of Waverly Place, Father of the Pride, The Polar Express, Keeping Up with the Steins, Halloween, and America's Most Talented Kids (on which he was a judge).”
  19. Vanessa Marano - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “Since 2011, she stars as Bay Kennish on the Freeform television series Switched at Birth.”
  20. Tyler James Williams - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “He is most recognizable for having played the title character of the Chris Rock-inspired sitcom Everybody Hates Chris, and songwriter Cyrus DeBarge in the Disney Channel movie Let It Shine. He has also had a supporting role as Noah on AMC's The Walking Dead. He now has a role on Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders.”
  21. Josh Hutcherson - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “(2010). In 2011, he landed the leading role of Peeta Mellark in the box office record-setting film series The Hunger Games, released annually from 2012 to 2015, for which he won three MTV Movie Awards and a People's Choice Award. During the same period he also played a lead role in Journey 2: The Mysterious Island (2012) and a voice role in the animated film Epic (2013).”
  22. Hallie Eisenberg - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “Hallie Kate Eisenberg (born August 2, 1992) is an American actress, best known for being 'The Pepsi Girl' in a series of Pepsi commercials and her role as Erika Tansy in How to Eat Fried Worms.”
  23. Hallie Eisenberg - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “Hallie Kate Eisenberg (born August 2, 1992) is an American actress, best known for being 'The Pepsi Girl' in a series of Pepsi commercials and her role as Erika Tansy in How to Eat Fried Worms.”
  24. Selena Gomez - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “Gomez rose to fame as the leading role in the Disney Channel series Wizards of Waverly Place (2007–12). Due to the success of the series, Gomez worked on various films, television shows, and musical collaborations for the network in the following years. Gomez also formed her own production company in 2008, titled July Moon Productions; she serves as an executive producer on the Netflix original series 13 Reasons Why, which released in March 2017. She signed a recording contract with Hollywood Records in 2008 and subsequently formed her band Selena Gomez & the Scene the following year. The band released three studio albums and produced four top thirty hits by 2011.”
  25. Daisy Ridley - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “Daisy Jazz Isobel Ridley (born 10 April 1992) is an English actress. She began her acting career by appearing in minor television roles and short films before being cast in the lead role of Rey in the Star Wars sequel trilogy, appearing in Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) and Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017).”
  26. John Boyega - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “John Adedayo Adegboyega (born 17 March 1992), known professionally as John Boyega, is an English actor and producer best known for playing Finn in the 2015 film Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the seventh film of the Star Wars series. Boyega rose to prominence in his native United Kingdom for his role as Moses in the 2011 sci-fi comedy film Attack the Block. Some of Boyega's other credits include historical fiction drama film Half of a Yellow Sun (2013), four episodes of the television series 24: Live Another Day and the drama Imperial Dreams (2014).”
  27. Emily Osment - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “Emily Jordan Osment (born March 10, 1992) is an American actress, singer, and songwriter born in Los Angeles, California. After working in several television films in her childhood, she gained fame for co-starring as the character Gerti Giggles in Spy Kids 2: The Island of Lost Dreams and Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over. She went on to co-star in the Emmy Award-nominated Disney Channel sitcom Hannah Montana as Lilly Truscott as well as the series movie, Hannah Montana: The Movie.”
  28. Logan Miller - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 24 April 2017. “Logan Miller (born February 18, 1992) is an American actor and musician, known for his role as Benjamin in The Walking Dead and Tripp Campbell in the Disney XD sitcom I'm in the Band.”
  29. Dylan and Cole Sprouse - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 25 April 2017. “heir first major theatrical film role was in the 1999 comedy, Big Daddy, in which they co-starred with Adam Sandler. They later appeared in several television sitcoms and starred in the straight-to-DVD films I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus and Just for Kicks.”
  30. 30.0 30.1 30.2 30.3 1992 in film - Wikipedia (1992). Retrieved on 27 January 2017.
  31. 31.0 31.1 31.2 31.3 1992 in television - Wikipedia (1992).
  32. 32.0 32.1 32.2 32.3 1992 in music - Wikipedia (1992). Retrieved on 30 January 2017.
  33. 33.0 33.1 33.2 33.3 1992 in music - Wikipedia (1992).
  34. The Case of the Cautious Condor - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 25 April 2017. “The game was first released for FM Towns in Japan in 1989, later also for CDTV (1991) and DOS (1992). It won several awards, such as 'Best Adventure 1989' in Japan. The game sold below expectations of the developer also because CD-ROM drives were not yet widespread at that time.”
  35. Tiger Heli - Wikipedia (2017). Retrieved on 25 April 2017. “The game is a vertical scrolling shooter where the player controls a helicopter taking on hordes of enemies which include tanks, battleships, and artillery. It is interesting to note that, besides some airplanes taking off, there are no flying enemies in the entire game.”
  36. Alex Shrugged notes: I was part of a team. I don't want to give the impression that I was running the whole show, but my work porting the game Tiger Heli to CDi convinced at least one developer that CDi was no better than an IBM PC and I was there when he said it.
  37. See Liebeck v. McDonald's Restaurants
  38. See Ruby Ridge
  39. See 1992 Erzincan earthquake
  40. See 1992 Nicaragua earthquake
  41. See 1992 Cairo earthquake
  42. See 1992 Flores earthquake
  43. See Yoshihiro Hattori
  44. See 1992 Guadalajara explosions
  45. See Charles Geschke
  46. See Bosnian War
  47. See UN Security Council Resolution 794
  48. Battle Ready. G.P. Putnam's Sons. ISBN 0399151761. 
  49. http://www.larouchepub.com/eiw/public/1993/eirv20n19-19930514/eirv20n19-19930514_006-how_shock_therapy_has_ruined_rus.pdf
  50. See the Maastricht Treaty
  51. See Planned Parenthood v. Casey

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