Wednesday, June 6, 2007

"Ethnic Cleansing" in Los Angeles: Misconstruction or Sensationalism?

by Hiram José Irizarry Osorio, Research Associate for the Kirwan Institute

Mr. Tarso Luís Ramos provides important insights in his recently published piece in ColorLines entitled “L.A. Story” regarding the misconstrue labeling of the violence taking place in Los Angeles as Latin@s "ethnic cleansing" of Blacks. Mr. Ramos, in addition to detailing the genesis of this debate, presents statistical evidence of the violence taking place in Los Angeles among gangs, which debunks the "ethnic cleansing" perspective. He also presents testimony of vested and knowledgeable individuals that debunk and contest the violence taking place in Los Angeles as "ethnic cleansing". Nevertheless, at the same time Mr. Ramos closes his piece by stating "We mustn't turn a blind eye to the bigoted motivations of some Latino gang members who commit violent acts against African Americans. But neither can we allow rightwing interpretations of those dynamics to substitute for a deeper analysis that can give rise to responses that elevate racial and economic justice as their core objectives." What do you think?
"L.A. Story," by Tarso Luís Ramos
ColorLines, Issue #38, May/June 2007

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