Rodney King’s case & New York blackout essay
There are many incidents that occurred in the United States, which led to disastrous consequences. The Rodney King’s case and the New York blackout in 1977 are two incidents that have had catastrophic consequences. There are also many things everyone can learn from reading or experiencing these two incidents.
The Rodney King’s case began on March 3, 1991, in the California highway. The California highway patrol officers saw Rodney King speeding on Interstate 210 and chased him for 13km straight. The officers claimed that they were chasing King at speeds which excessed over 160km/h, however later on it was pointed out by the manufacturer of the car King was driving that the car is unable to go over 150km/h even at its full speed. When the officers finally got King to stop, King disobeyed the officers’ commands to lie down. The officers realized that they needed to take action so they took out a taser and shocked King with it. However, King repeatedly tried to get up and refused to do anything that the officers asked. The officers then took out their batons and struck King with them which forced King to the ground. Later on, when King was taken to trial, the officers argued that they had a legitimate reason to believe that King was potentially dangerous and possibly on drugs. Later that night Rodney King was charged with a felony, but it was dropped. The officers were later charged for discrimination and un-neccesary physical contact. This incident triggered massive rioting in Los Angelos, which lasted for three days. When all was under control, it was reported that there was nearly $1 billion in damage, with 58 deaths, 2383 injuries, more than 7000 fire responses, and 3100 businesses damaged.
Another incident that has had disastrous consequences is the blackout in New York City on July 13th, 1977. The blackout started at 8:37pm when a lightning struck Buchanan South, which tripped two circuit breakers in Westchester County. However, this had only harmed the circuits and did not cause them to malfunction. Shortly after, a second lightning struck and caused the loss of two 345,000 volt transmission lines and caused a nuclear power plant at Indian Point to lose power. 18 minutes after the initial strike, another lightning came and struck two critical transmission lines. This left the remaining lines to do all the work. The transmission lines that were left could not accomplish this job, and all of them overloaded. Therefore, the whole area lost its power and it did not receive power until later on the following day. During the time that the city had lost power, there were uncountable cases of looting and vandalism. There were also many stores and buildings torched and left burning. After things were settled, there was a count of 1616 stores damaged from looting and rioting, 1037 fires, and 3776 people were arrested. It was estimated that the damage costs were a bit over 300 million dollars(US).
There are many things that these two incidents has taught everyone. The Rodney King case teaches the readers that people should not judge others by their skin colour or differences. If the officers that apprehended King were not somewhat racist towards black people, they would not have physically abused King just because he did not obey their desires. The blackout in New York City teaches the readers that even if you get the chance to create chaos and loot from everyone, you shouldn’t do it. In this incident, in the end the damage costs totaled over 300 million dollars, which will end up coming from the citizens taxes. So this basically means you got to create havok for free, but you would have paid extra for the things you looted because the taxes would cover that and more.
In conclusion, the Rodney King case and the 1977 blackout in New York City are two incidents that had caused chaos and havok amongst the US. However, from experiencing and reading these two incidents, people can learn to not do what was wrong then, to prevent an incident like that in the future.