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Monday, April 30, 2007

Obama talks about the 92' Riots......

It appears that Obama has made some salient points regarding the infrastuctural causes of the infamous L.A. riots of 1992. The Illinois senator gave a speech to an overflowing crowd at L.A.'s First AME church, in which the subject of the riots was invoked, as it is the 15th anniversary of what many Black progressives have dubbed a rebellion. Of course, liberals fail to acknowledge that the riots did far more damage to people of color themselves than to the institutions that may be the root cause of African-American frailties. No one brought the riots to Beverly Hills or Bel Air. God forbid. Perhaps a dash of Cosby tough love and personal responsibility talk mixed in with the usual institutional racism diatribe, might have been a more honest elixir in Obama's oration-but that almost never happens when liberals are on the hunt for Black votes. Anyway, check out an excerpt of Obama's appearance as reported by the LA Times:

Obama addresses social component of 1992 riots
By Scott Martelle, Times Staff Writer
6:18 PM PDT, April 29, 2007

- Activists fault post-riot rebuilding
LOS ANGELES -- Invoking images of Los Angeles in flames, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., argued Sunday -- the 15th anniversary of the nation's most violent modern civil uprising -- that little has been done to fix the social and economic conditions that gave rise to a three-day rampage that killed at least 53 people.

And although the riots occurred in Los Angeles, the conditions that spawned them persist around the U.S., Obama told an overflow crowd at the First AME Church.

"There wasn't anything going on in Los Angeles that was unique to Los Angeles," Obama said. "If you traveled to Chicago, you would see the same young men on street corners without hope, without prospects and without a sense of any destiny other than ending up in prison or in a casket."

Obama, speaking to an enthusiastic and overflowing crowd, drew a sustained standing ovation when he rebuked the Bush administration for funding the war in Iraq ahead of improving the lives of impoverished Americans -- particularly those in minority neighborhoods.

"We have now spent half a trillion dollars on a war that should have never been authorized and should have never been waged," Obama said. "We could have invested that money in South Central Los Angeles, or the south side of Chicago, in jobs and infrastructure and hospitals and schools. Why is it we can find the money in a second for a war that doesn't make any sense?"

Obama's speech was the most direct address on race by any of the major presidential candidates in California this weekend for the Democratic National Convention in San Diego. And it came as the major Democratic contenders are fighting over black voters. An April 5-9 Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg Poll found 41 percent of black voters nationwide backing New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, 34 percent backing Obama and 3 percent backing former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards.

Clinton, whose husband, Bill, received strong black support in both his presidential elections, mentioned the riots in her speech Saturday before the California Democratic Convention in San Diego. But she referred to "the chaos and violence in those days and the anger and despair that boiled over into the streets" in passing as she went on to endorse ethnic diversity and call for border policies that recognize that "immigration has been and still is the lifeblood of the United States."

Edwards did not mention the riots in his convention speech Sunday morning, but he touched on race within the context of economic inequality, arguing that "if you are a man or woman of color in America today, you are more likely to live in poverty," and have a higher risk of cancer, heart disease and other problems.

"The one thing we have to be willing to face up to -- and I mean head on -- is that race ... plays an enormous role in what's happening," said Edwards, reprising what is for him a familiar theme. "We have to be honest about the problem. The racial and economic segregation that exists in America is not all right."

For more on the LA Times story:

Obama addresses social component of 1992 riots

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