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Reflecting on the Chicano Moratorium in L.A. Share your memories.

July 11, 2010 |  9:44 am


This week, I've been thinking about Aug. 29, 1970, a key day in Los Angeles history. It's a date that's being commemorated by many Angelenos next month because it's the 40th anniversary of the Chicano Moratorium, the large antiwar, civil-rights demonstration that brought 30,000 people to the streets of East Los Angeles.

On Thursday, I highlighted the story of Rosalío Muñoz, then a 24-year-old UCLA graduate who became an unlikely Chicano icon when he decided to resist the draft then sending legions of young American men to Vietnam.  Muñoz helped organize the Chicano Moratorium, an event modeled, loosely, on the larger Moratorium Against the Vietnam War being organized in cities across the U.S.

Muñoz's story showed how white, black and Latino history were united in that period of turbulent change.

On Friday, I took a look back at the life and work of Ruben Salazar, the Times columnist who was killed after the Chicano Moratorium rally had been broken up by sheriff's deputies, and after rioting broke out on Whittier Boulevard. Salazar was killed by a tear-gas projectile fired by a sheriff's deputy.  Some 40 years after his death, my colleague Robert J. Lopez is pressing the Sheriff's Department to release its records on the case. Releasing those documents could help clear up the enduring mystery of Salazar's final days.

Were you here in 1970? Do you remember the moratorium? Please tell me your memories of those fateful days of Los Angeles history and of that legend of Los Angeles journalism, Ruben Salazar.

-- Hector Tobar