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What Do The Rittenhouse, Liu Verdicts Mean To You, LA? Let Us Know

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In the early summer of 2020, we here at LAist launched a crowdsourced series called Race in LA. Over the course of a year, we published dozens of personal essays from Angelenos who joined us in an ongoing conversation about how our race and ethnicity shape our daily lives.

Race in LA was inspired by the tragedy in El Paso in summer 2019, when a mass shooter went gunning for Latinos at a local Walmart. And we launched the series as we reeled from another senseless tragedy: the murder of George Floyd at the hands of police.

We know that racism is pervasive and there are systems in place that put communities at a disadvantage. We, LAist journalists, have an obligation to combat systemic racism, even as we’re on our own respective journeys.

Our nation is now trying to process the acquittal of Kyle Rittenhouse, a white teenager who shot and killed two men and wounded another in Kenosha, Wis., last year as people protested the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man. The white police officer who shot Blake, who was left partially paralyzed, will not face federal charges.

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On Friday afternoon, a jury acquitted L.A. Sheriff’s Deputy Luke Liu of voluntary manslaughter in the killing of an unarmed motorist at a Norwalk gas station in 2016.

We feel it’s time to reopen the conversation that we started with Race in LA. So we’re asking for your help. Because we know that every day here in Los Angeles, people experience racism and xenophobia, whether it is overt or casual. And we in the media often fail to fully recognize it.

Let’s keep the conversation going. We want to hear from you.