The Best of Notable Quotables; December 21, 1992

Vol. Five; No. 26

Rodney King 100 Meter Dash While Carrying a VCR Award* (for rationalizing the LA riots)

“It’s not a big surprise that the jury in suburban Simi Valley sided with the white policemen. Just as it’s no surprise that the blacks in downtown Los Angeles rioted and people died.... Politicians have fanned these flames with code words about ‘welfare queens,’ ‘equal opportunity,’ and ‘quotas.’ Language designed to turn whites against blacks. With two-party politics that favored the rich and hurt everyone else.”

– NBC commentator John Chancellor, April 30 Nightly News.        


“We hold accountable Republicans who have savaged our urban schools, our housing, our health care, our social services. We hold accountable Democrats who have collaborated in this butchery....We hold accountable those who waste our billions on a military with no enemy to fight.”

– Osborn Elliott, Newsweek Editor-in-Chief from 1961-76, in his speech as co-chairman of the “Save Our Cities” rally, May 16.

A Looting Binge Born of Necessity, Opportunity

Washington Post front page, May 10

“We should avoid focusing exclusively on the rage and inappropriate behavior of oppressed and frustrated people who started these riots.”

– Hugh Downs on ABC’s 20/20, May 1.

“Increasingly, people are saying that all of the violence had very little to do with Rodney King. Instead, it was the desperate call of a community fighting for change.”

– ABC reporter Tom Foreman, May 3 World News Sunday.

* inspired by P.J. O'Rourke