Having walked the neighborhood up to Book Soup and down to Pavilions earlier Saturday evening, while having earlier enjoyed a nice pesto with tomato in my back garden to the deafening sometimes pleasant tunes blasted from the park up the street, and on that walk around dusk noticing the many groups of already inebriated, disoriented lonely young people sitting on curbs and crouching in building vestibules, I asked myself: Is this what the struggle for gay rights was all about?
Then, on returning home here at Rangely, where we tenants had crowded our cars into the common driveway given the insane overparking and traffic on our street, there arrived a barrage of helicopters with Krieg lights and announcements from the sky to get out and “move toward La Cienega.” There were massive traffic jams and people jostling to just get through this one thoroughfare. At least the helicopters reminded me of living in Echo Park in honest gang territory in the 80s.
And then, 11 p.m. Channel 4 KNBC News came on with reports and live shots of the entertainment (Little Coachella?) venue having been oversold (as I could have predicted when, already on my early evening walk along Melrose, the standing throngs went back to the PDC parking entrance) with fights breaking out within the fenced-in venue.
And so, I took a midnight walk just now up Robertson to Santa Monica Boulevard to San Vicente, tracing my route back since San Vicente was blocked for even pedestrian access by Sheriff’s deputies.
What I’ve witnessed is a West Hollywood self-promotional excrescence grown out of control and out of its possible boundaries of cultural relevance. This is no longer about Gay Liberation, Gay Pride or even the anodyne “Just Be.” It’s a vulgar maneuver on the part of West Hollywood, usurping Gay Liberation, for financial gain, while giving young gay people and their friends (especially from the outlying areas of L.A. County) a terrible, tawdry event for which they may have saved precious, hard-earned money to attend and not even getting into the music they were hoping for.
The City of West Hollywood and the idiotically named “Christopher Street West” need to shut this mini-Coachella farce down once and for all, especially before violence worse than this evening eventually erupts. Gay Pride should be an open, not fenced-in, gathering of an after-march event in Grand Park in downtown LA. West Hollywood should cease this pimping of young people, who cannot afford to live here, into this intoxicated delirium for a place essentially settled and lived in by misogynist homosexuals and their quasi-feminist allies. This historical dynamic influences everything, including “affordable” housing policy.