Page 2, 3rd September 1965

3rd September 1965
Page 2
Page 2, 3rd September 1965 — We are 'all to blame' for riots

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Locations: Los Angeles, Assissi


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We are 'all to blame' for riots

CATHOLIC. Protestant and Jewish groups in Los Angeles have issued an "Open Letter of Confession" declaring that no one branch of society can he blamed for the riots in the Watts district.

The statement urged that National Guardsmen be kept in the Watts area "until positive remedies have begun to eliminate the root causes of rioting". It was issued jointly by the Council of Churches in Southern California, the Catholic Human Relations Council of Los Angeles and the Southern Californian Board of Rabbis.

It said: "Law enforcement officers as such are no more responsible for the rioting than people in any other segment of society". (Police brutality has been widely cited as a cause of the outbreak.)

"We sire all to blame for the riots. The people of the riot area are no more responsible for the mob action of some residents there than anyone else is for the lawless acts of his neighbours."

Local churches and synagogues were urged to develop programmes to end discriminatory attitudes and practices. The statement also proposed a conference of city officials and community leaders "mediated by skilled human relations personnel."

Speaker on Sin Mgr. Loris Capovilla, formerly private secretary to the late Pope John, was among the speakers at the annual course of Christian studies in Assissi, Italy, last week. Theme of the session was "Sin in the Modern World".

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