Brutal beatings, ruthless riots, vicious violence. All of these phrases can describe the Zoot Suit Riots of 1943. But some people forget that it all started with a group of rowdy kids having fun at a party. With a bundle of racism, a splash of corruption, and a whole lot of mob mentality, a collection of proud young men managed to unintentionally spark something that escalated into a horrible moment in history, one full of hatred and abuse.
Since the moment Columbus stepped onto land in the Americas, claiming it for countries over 4,000 miles away, discrimination has affected the decisions of many and the lives of more. As one nation conquered another and freedoms were ripped away, the underlying tensions built. The Zoot Suit Riots were the moment when the dam broke. It’s an uncomfortable topic and therefore seldom talked about, but it’s still important to understand and learn from the mistakes of the generations before us. So, because knowledge is power, and ignorance is poison, we welcome you to the latest exhibit from LAMoG: The Zoot Suit Riots.