During the 1992 Rodney King riots in Los Angeles, armed Korean store owners stationed themselves on top of their shops to protect their property from looters and became known as the “Roof Koreans.”
A riveting Twitter thread celebrated these brave heroes as the anniversary of the riots approaches.
From April 29 to May 4 in 1992, rioters burned and looted everything in sight to protest the acquittal of four Los Angeles Police Department officers for excessive force in the beating of King. The riots left over $1 million in property damage. Reginald Denny, a white truck driver who stopped at a traffic light in the middle of the riots, was also pulled from his truck and beat nearly to death by a mob of rioters. His skull was fractured in 91 places.
By the end of the rioting, 53 people were killed, including 35 from gunfire.
While the riots were horrific, the “Roof Koreans” emerged as a testament to the bravery of their community and the importance of the Second Amendment. Their efforts have been described brilliantly by an anonymous Twitter user who posts under the handle “AsianJ86.”
The poster began by describing how Korean citizens were initially being targeted by the rioters.
“Koreans were savagely attacked, while their businesses and homes were looted and burned. They did what good citizens do, they called the police and they waited for help. Unfortunately, police were stretched thin and were also being targeted for violence,” they wrote.
“So, what do good American citizens do when the police can’t or won’t help them and hordes of armed looters are descending upon them? They become peak American citizens by exercising their God given and constitutionally protected rights,” the thread continued. “Unfortunately for the rioters, most of these fine Americans were legal immigrants from Korea. As such, many of them had fulfilled Korea’s mandatory service obligations prior to earning American citizenship and took to the 2nd amendment like beef to bulgogi.”
The thread joked, “many were carried to the rooftops by bald eagles (or so the legend goes) and Roof Koreans were born.”
Two particular members of the Roof Koreans, David Joo and Richard Park, stood out from the rest.
“David, Richard, and their fellow citizens had to do some on-the-spot soul searching. Yeah they could run for their lives. But what’s life worth if you abandon everything you’ve spent your life toiling for, the existence you’ve sweated and labored for, in the face of danger?” the thread asked.
“Over 5 days, more than 1000 buildings in the LA area were destroyed, and over a billion dollars worth of damage done. But guess which communities endured the storm with minimal damage and injury? That’s right. The store David and Richard fought from still stands today,” he continued.
“We aren’t responsible for mass shootings, murder, or suicides. Neither are our weapons. You are your own best defense. Don’t let weak cowards scare you into giving up the best tools for that responsibility. And if you want to deprive me of my rights, come and take them,” the powerful and informative thread concluded.