Los Angeles, CA
March 6, 1988
After five years of asking, and following the unnecessary death of a Los Angelino wheelchair-user who was struck and killed by a motorist because he was forced to roll in the street due to the non-existence of curb cuts and safe paths of travel, activists took matters into their own hands.
Chanting “Walk of Shame!” and “We will roll!” and singing “If I Had a Hammer,” 30 LA ADAPT activists showed up at Hollywood’s inaccessible “Walk of Fame” — where all the stars have their names and handprints along the sidewalk — with sledgehammers and signs in hand.
From its inception, ADAPT had adopted the lessons and wisdom of Gandhi and Dr. King. “Street Theater,” like this and, later, the Capitol Crawl, were great at both attracting attention and raising awareness. It usually brought out the media and the politicians, as it did in this case. Local Congressman, Mike Woo, visited the action promising to have curb cuts installed and sidewalks resurfaced to minimize slipping within two weeks.
Two days later and across the country, local ADAPTers descended on Union Station in Hartford, CT with sledgehammers in hand, tired of very limited access to public transportation. “We’re equal citizens and tired of waiting,” said Hartford ADAPT’s Lynda Hascom. Four would be arrested that day and held overnight for not signing written promises that they would appear in court.