preview

Los Angeles Riots Sociology

Good Essays

The Los Angeles riots in 1992 did not stem from the beating of Rodney King but stemmed from a much larger problem. Individuals were frustrated with being placed in a social hierarchy based on the color of their skin. The beating of Rodney King was the "cherry on top" for the bottled up frustration people felt. In the United States, there is a social hierarchy, and the judicial system works differently depending on where the individual is placed within the hierarchy. The riots were a non-constructive way to fight for equal rights within the judicial system, but many individuals were fed up with society telling them where they should be placed. A social hierarchy has existed since the beginning of time. The inner workings of the overabundance …show more content…

There may be some blacks or minorities who remain poor because of their personal characteristics, but the majority of poor blacks are not different from others in motivations and aspirations. In fact, many poor people work incredibly hard at low paying jobs in order to barely get by. The most important causes of poverty lie in the power relations of society, and not the cultural characteristics of the poor individuals. The experiences of poverty have an impact on an individual's disposition and psychological state. Poverty could cause an individual to behave in particular ways, but the main difference between the poor and the rest of society is the opportunities and circumstances the individual’s encounter. It is not their personalities, attributes or values. Blacks continue to be discriminated against in employment and housing, which only contributes to poverty. The majority of African Americans are not poor because they choose not to work, but are poor because of the continuous discrimination from the dominant white race. Poor black Americans should face the same political, economic, and housing conditions as poor white Americans, but this is not the case. Because of continuing discrimination, poor black families do not live in integrated neighborhoods with comparable white families. In addition, …show more content…

Suppressing negative emotions can cause mental health concerns, but individuals with low social power and low social status may use these strategies to avoid conflict (Langner, "Social Hierarchy And Depression: The Role Of Emotion Suppression"). The social hierarchy affects mental health in part through a process of emotion suppression. It also does not help that some scholars suggest that the more individuals aim at climbing the social hierarchy, the more society's hierarchy gets strong (Bardoscia, "The Social Climbing Game"). Pepi Leistyna states in her “Social Class and Entertainment television” article that there are harsh realities that the poor and working class of color face, but television and other media outlets show that the middle class is open to everyone (Leistyna 3). The middle class has not been open to everyone, and the social hierarchy that has been the unwritten law of where an individual is placed in society can explain this. The hierarchy is not only destructive for individuals of color, but even European females and European families who have not came from money. It is a frustrating reality that seems never to be changing and only getting worse. The country is dividing into the two extremes. There is the rich who are getting richer and the poor who are getting poorer. The majority of individuals who are getting poorer are

Get Access