Gang violence has become L.A.’s dirty family secret. We know it exists, and we know how bad it is. But, we don’t want to talk about it, and nothing ever gets done about it. Why? Because this city is run by dirty, spineless politicians who operate on 300 different agendas. Gang violence has not affected them directly, so it’s not really their priority. We have seen so many innocent people fall at the hands of stupidity in the past few weeks. A kid picking lemons. A standout athlete. Innocent bystanders. What if one of these unlucky victims were, say, the daughter of a city council member? The son of a county supervisor? A mistress of the Mayor? Would Los Angeles finally say enough is enough?
The Mayor wants 10,000 officers on the streets by 2009. He should get that, plus 10,000 more. Budget-be-damned, we need this. For our city, our families, and our sanity. We need the eradication of gang mentality to be a #1 priority in L.A. Sure, we have other problems, like a lack of affordable housing, crappy public transit, and underfunded schools. But, until L.A. is a safe city to live in, none of that really matters.
The Mayor needs to make this his legacy. Make this a zero tolerance city – not just in name, but in action. Any gang-related first offense should be prosecuted by military draft or outright deportation. Yeah, that sucks. You may even think it’s unfair. Too bad. Too many innocent lives are at stake.
If you have any other ideas on how to fix this, let’s hear ’em. I’m tired of hearing about innocent kids getting killed, followed by some press conference. Stop talking, and do something already.