To answer the question profferred by the headline [“Sympathy for the Devil: Crime Stats Say L.A.’s Streets Are Safer Than Ever, So Why Are Gang Hoods Still So Bloody?” Nov. 28-Dec. 4], the reason is that there are still murderous gangsters running the show in some parts of town. Duh. And why is that? Because society has not had the will to remove the gangsters from our midst. This isn’t rocket science, really. Fortunately the modern leadership of Bratton/Baca/Rice seems to be chipping away at decades of inertia that allowed the gang problem to get completely out of control, thanks to the neglect of politicians who still don’t quite get it. Nice try at blaming the cops, though. Hell, everybody does, so why not you?
I’ve never seen an article or interview in which a former gangbanger, dealer or other convicted social plague-bearer claimed responsibility for themselves. Veiled or unveiled, laced with curses or written in the most eloquent prose, the fingers always point outward, and the message is “It’s Not My Fault.” For all the talk of balls dropping in this article, what really takes balls is saying “I was wrong.”
I think astrology is nonsense, but during my 10 years at L.A. Weekly, [the late] Rockie Gardiner was one of my favorite people, the one I most looked forward to running into at the office. She was funny, compassionate, completely warm and open, always curious about what you were up to, one of the most genuinely empathetic humans I’ve ever met. Here’s a hug, Rockie, I loved you and, damn, you’ll be missed.
I think most of your readers agree that Rockie Gardiner was one of a kind and that we all miss her. Will L.A. Weekly have another astrology column in the near future? I feel like I have lost my compass.
Judithanne Westrope Nuevo, CA
We do see another astrology column in our future.
Before the Internet, L.A. Weekly was our music bible. The first thing you did on a Thursday was go to the record store to figure out where you were going that night. We sure as hell weren’t getting anything from Rolling Stone. Flipside was good for record info, but they are no more. I just saw the Atomic Sherpas in this week’s calendar. You’re still telling me where to go. Rock on!
Posted at laweekly.com by Elise in L.A.
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