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How The ‘92 Riots Started A Major Demographic Shift In Los Angeles




Protesters march through Hollywood after curfew during a demonstration over the death of George Floyd while in Minneapolis Police custody, in Los Angeles, California, June 2, 2020.
Protesters march through Hollywood after curfew during a demonstration over the death of George Floyd while in Minneapolis Police custody, in Los Angeles, California, June 2, 2020.
KYLE GRILLOT/AFP via Getty Images

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The 1992 beating of Rodney King and the days of unrest that followed marked a significant change in police policy in the city of Los Angeles over the decade or so that followed.

Yesterday on AirTalk, we looked back on those changes and the parallels and contrasts that can be drawn to the events of the last three weeks. But it also touched off a change in the demographic makeup of the city. Neighborhoods in South L.A., for example, that traditionally had large African-American populations started to see large out-migrations of families to the Inland Empire while also seeing an influx of Latino families. For some, it was because of fears of continued police brutality and marginalization following the riots. For others, the potential for economic opportunity was greater and the cost of living less in a place like San Bernardino or Riverside County.

Today on AirTalk, we’ll retrace the history of the city’s changing demographic from the 1992 L.A. Riots until now and look at how the city’s shifting ethnic and socioeconomic makeup has impacted race relations today.

Guests:

Darnell Hunt, dean of social sciences and professor of sociology and African-American studies at UCLA

Fernando Guerra, professor of political science and director of the Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University; he is a member of the Southern California Public Radio Board of Trustees

Pastor J. Edgar Boyd, senior minister of the First African Methodist Episcopal Church of Los Angeles, a 148-year-old institution