Seeds: On March 3, 1991, African American taxi driver Rodney King was brutally beaten by four white LAPD police officers at the conclusion of a high speed chase. Police attempted to pull him over for speeding on the highway, but he refused. He was worried that his blood-alcohol level would be too high, and he would get arrested, violating his parole. The beating was taped by amateur videographer, George Holiday, and broadcasted to the world. Despite video evidence, the four officers involved in the case were cleared of all excessive force charges. The officers’ acquittal sparked riots in Los Angeles in 1992.
Core: Today marks the 25th anniversary of Rodney King’s beating and the ensuing public outrage. The footage taken of the beating was the first videotaped example of police brutality to go viral.
Skin: Despite his death in June of 2012, King continues to be a symbol of the severity of police brutality, and his name is often mentioned in discussions pertaining to more recent instances of police brutality.
Leaves: Many solutions have been presented to address the use of excessive force by police officers, 25 years after the Rodney King case, the problem still remains as relevant as ever and has even been called an epidemic.
*Disclaimer, videos are graphic*
Food For Thought: Have you seen the Rodney King video? Do you think the officers involved should have been indicted? Do you think that police brutality is at an epidemic level in the United States?