Yesterday I posted the last chapter of my book An American Comedy. Over the next couple months, I will be printing and binding it myself. I'm hoping to release it in the fall. Now that I'm finished writing that thing, I am moving right along to another writing project that I expect will take me quite a while. It's called The Town I Live In, and it's basically a literary mosaic of Fullerton, CA (the town I live in). So, dear readers, that's what I'll be posting for the foreseeable future. Here we go:
The documentary “Bloods and Crips: Made in America” is about the circumstances that gave rise to the two biggest gangs in LA. It was racist housing policies in the 30s and 40s that forced poor blacks into South Central. And then it was basically social neglect. People have this idea that gangs arose simply because minorities are evil or inferior or something. But the reality is that white people are and were partly the cause.
It’s the same in Fullerton. Fullerton Tokers Town (FTT) and other gangs arose because of racist housing policies back in the day, and racist police, and the KKK (yes, the Klan operated in Fullerton too), and lack of funding for schools and stuff. Someone should make a documentary about FTT. Showing how these people are human beings with human needs and desires and community. Not to glamorize it or condone it. Violence and drugs and other gang-related stuff is certainly not okay. But people need to understand the conditions in an American city (Fullerton) that gave rise to gangs, and how we are still complicit. And maybe to point a way toward reconciliation.