Strollers and fists today.

This is the Venice Beach the city of LA wants you to bring your family to visit.

Btw, they’ll also be installing an iceskating rink in two months. Because…why not give away sharp 10” blades to people in a woefully under-policed, violent location?

Every single strategy the city has discussed is weak. They need a complete re-think, not the same old approach with bandaid reactions. They need to look at the issue with fresh eyes. 

Dear Carol Sobel,

I applaud your kind-hearted, well-intentioned defense of transients rights in Venice beach. However, the situation here is currently descending into rampant crime as dealer-addict-vagrants have maneuvered through the loopholes to enjoy a relative freedom that now includes daily assaults, dealing, public defecation, OD’s, and prostitution. 

(If you take a cursory look through the archives of this blog and on youtube – from one vantage point not even constant -  you will see the increase for yourself.)

I have seen outreach programs where an average of 2/100 people have accepted help. So many of these people are not ‘homeless’ only by bad luck. A good number are obviously here because it’s a comfortable lifestyle coddled by the environment that has been created.

I’m all for individual liberties – but not when they interfere with others’ rights to safety and peace. While some of the homeless population here is undoubtedly displaced and needs attention – there is an undeniably large, criminal segment who are manipulating the situation.

This is untenable and, unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be an effective ‘2nd half’ of any plan in place after simply defending people’s ‘right’ to reside on public lands.

I would like to know, what is your plan? And how can we address this situation in a way that takes both individual liberties and public safety into account?

If you’re still concerned with what is happening here in Venice, I would love to sit down and discuss ways of moving forward with progressive, non-partisan action. There has been too much divisiveness and polarization of the issue without context – on both ‘sides.’

There has been too much denial, shifting of blame and responsibility, and too many political maneuvers. 

The simple question I ask is; who is willing to take action to make a change rather than fulfill any personal or political agenda?

I eagerly await a constructive response. 

Same transient crew as usual.

Note the guy in the sweatshirt is this guy again.

They took people’s donated cash, and instead of buying food, they promptly bought some beer and packed their glass bowls with weed.

I bet they’re hungry now.

Of course, they soon forgot where they left their bowl.

I found this right on the apartment building’s door buzzer.

It would be hilarious, really, like a comedy – if they weren’t so loud and violent all the time.

Right on schedule.

Same place as usual.

How any city could – with a conscience – promote this place as the 2nd most popular tourist destination and allow the constant violence to flourish is beyond me.

It’s not as if there isn’t plenty of proof that this corner is a powder keg. What started as a blog to show the balance of beautiful beaches and the usual weirdness of Venice has instead become an almost-daily catalog of 3rd world-level crime.

The issues need city, county and even state attention to provide the resources to tackle the problem.

The councilman has tried to assert change. The police have stepped up enforcement. But it’s all just a bandaid in contrast with what’s needed.

This intersection alone has at least one violent incident a day. These are just the ones I can snap a pic of when I happen to be home working.

So imagine what happens all the time. And then multiply that against the length of the boardwalk – and think whether you’d want to bring your family here.

The Venice Beach boardwalk needs a complete rethink and a dedicated police presence. 

Anything less is just irresponsible.

-

( And, just in case you forget just how bad it is – this guy left a blood stain on the cement. Maybe the city should start addressing the problem before they wipe away the evidence to welcome tomorrow’s tourists.)

If only…

"Let’s make venice less…stabby.”

Maybe we should print postcards and make T shirts and let the homeless sell them for vouchers that pay for food treatment. A tiny action – sure, but it’s something Vs. nothing.

Really, Venice needs any new ideas and action from the community to help the issue that’s at the root of the crime and violence - not just occasional police crackdowns and sweeps that do nothing but appear to criminalize homelessness, or minimally address the problems.

There is a criminal, transient population on Ocean Front Walk especially that exploits the situation here. This should be obvious to the city and detectives by cross-referencing many of the same faces you see in the violence.

This just takes away from the real social problems facing those who truly are down on their luck and in need, and welcome any help. 

(Top two designs by Megan Sheehan , 3rd by Yelan Tong, 4th by Alex of Venice 311 and the 5th by Tom Christmann based on another assault right outside.)

Start here.

The guy yelling “Oh Oh Oh Yeaeeeah" every 5 seconds out there – day and night and at 2 am?

The one wearing the exact same thing in both pics?

He was there, in the middle of that assault - standing right there, letting it happen, egging it on.

And he tends to be one the crew who’s always at the center of a lot of violent things that go down out there, for some reason. Just like most of that crew who are somehow allowed to camp there and scream/ drink/ deal/ prostitute/ fight all night while the LAPD brass has been made very aware of, frequently.

*Updated, even. Because it never ENDS.

Maybe ask him what happened.

Called 911 about the latest assault.

Police showed up and then rolled away. The same usual transient crew just hung out by their camp and watched them roll by. 

So, nothing happened. This went down, and nothing happened. As per usual out there.

(Use discretion: foul language. Then again, it’s venice what did you expect?).