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Mar 18, 19

Kite Line: Policing Los Angles, Part #1

This week, Kite Line airs the first of two episodes tracking the rise of police racism and militarization in Los Angeles, from the Watts Uprising of 1965 to the 1992 L.A. Riots after Rodney King’s beating.

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Max Felker-Kantor, author of the book, Policing Los Angeles, walks us through the changes in policing, as well as the ways in which anti-police activism grew during this time. Starting with the 1960s siege of the Black Panther Party headquarters to the many police murders of Black residents such as the death of Eula Love in 1979, Felker-Kantor traces how these events led to both modern policing and anti-police movements. As one L.A. resident noted at the time, “the police’s role is to uphold community standards, and in this community- that includes segregation.”

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Kite Line is a radio program devoted to prison issues around the Midwest and beyond. Behind the prison walls, a message is called a kite: whispered words, a note passed hand to hand, or a request submitted to the guards for medical care. Illicit or not, sending a kite means trusting that other people will bear it farther along till it reaches its destination. On the show, we hope to pass along words across the prison walls.

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