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DID THE RIOTS OF THE 60S AND 2000S MAKE A DIFFERENCE

DID THE RIOTS OF THE 60S AND 2000S MAKE A DIFFERENCE

If we use the most recent riot for a cost Freddie Gray's death cost the recent rioting and unrest in Baltimore city an estimated $20 million, officials said. The costliest riots occurred in Los Angeles in 1992, according to data on the Insurance Information Institute's website. Those riots resulted in $1.3 billion in insured damages in 2013 dollars. Among the 10 costliest civil disorders on record, seven occurred in the 1960s, according to the industry trade group. One in Chicago in April 1968 cost what is now the equivalent of $87 million in damages. That incident ranks ninth.

From the Boston Tea Party to Ferguson, Americans have employed violence to improve their lot. But does it work?

In some cases, it has spurred investigations into law enforcement or other government systems. Occasionally, it has even forced corrupt or incompetent leaders to surrender or resign.

Riots are not great solutions, but riots are usually caused by real injustices. The Watts riots of the 1960s destroyed property that remains vacant 54 years later. It hasn't made a dent in economics, housing, jobs or police brutality. Riots are often the desperate response of people who feel they have no other recourse. We can reduce rioting by providing better access to housing, jobs, and justice for everyone.