ALPERN AT LARGE--You know, of course, that CityWatch contributors don't get paid, right? So when we say a few things like "the City of Los Angeles probably has to be sued by its residents for its government to obey the law" or "we need alternatives to the automobile but don't need to persecute those who rely on automobiles" or "affordable housing or transit-oriented development isn't an excuse for overdevelopment" it's not like we've got a conflict of interest.
So here are a few more thoughts that might go against the grain...
Maybe, just maybe, creating an environment for worsening car traffic in Los Angeles will pollute the air more, not less--whether via overdevelopment or a lack of parking to access mass transit/alternative transportation, the result is the same.
Maybe, just maybe, encouraging local overdevelopment and overpopulation (which is what the City of Los Angeles is doing) will NOT result in addressing environmental issues such as climate change as much as will the developing nations of China and India adhering to modern environmental standards.
Maybe, just maybe, environmental issues (which ARE very important, because we can't really live without a clean environment) aren't the most immediate problem we face, considering that our own adherence to political correctness is preventing us from balancing kindness to foreign/Muslim immigrants with demanding they assimilate to Western ideals...which even many Muslim leaders support.
Maybe, just maybe, it's not anti-American to suggest that this President isn't up to the job any more than his predecessor, George W. Bush, was up to the job. Seriously, it's both Constitutional and morally correct to express concern about our leadership ... or lack thereof.
Maybe, just maybe, we're torn between wanting to embrace Muslims as fellow kind, open-minded human beings versus wondering why so such a prominent minority have frightening beliefs that make us wonder what to believe, and who to trust.
Maybe, just maybe, we're also torn between being vigorously against persecution of innocent Muslims here at home while wondering why organizations such as CAIR are more interested in damage control (LINK: http://www.cair.com/press-center/press-releases/13289-cair-asks-president-obama-to-condemn-islamophobia-during-address-to-nation-on-terror.html) than in proclaiming what the rest of us are on pins and needles waiting to hear: that the horrible husband/wife killers in San Bernardino rot in hell, that they are a stain on humanity, and that they represent the worst thing that ever happened to Islam.
Maybe, just maybe, the kindness that Americans (who, at this time in our nation's history, are mostly white) show the rest of the world--including acknowledgement of past misdeeds, and of our moral imperative to reach out to those of us less fortunate--shouldn't be attacked but praised. A "politically incorrect Coke ad" pulled because it (gasp!) showed that we should reach out both to our Spanish-speaking and non-Spanish-speaking neighbors to the south (LINK: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ziSty_38p6k)? Really?
So maybe, just maybe, we can now understand why Americans are (and probably to their own surprise) now flocking to such unlikely individuals as billionaire and reality personality star Donald Trump or socialist Bernard Sanders to refocus on our main issues of the day...
...which include income inequality, government and big business (or am I just repeating myself?) crushing of the average law-abiding American and a press that is both distracted and living in its own bizarre bubble.
Maybe, just maybe ...
(Ken Alpern is a Westside Village Zone Director and Board member of the Mar Vista Community Council (MVCC), previously co-chaired its Planning and Outreach Committees, and currently is Co-Chair of its MVCC Transportation/Infrastructure Committee. He is co-chair of the CD11Transportation Advisory Committee and chairs the nonprofit Transit Coalition, and can be reached at Alpern@MarVista.org. He also does regular commentary on the Mark Isler Radio Show on AM 870, and co-chairs the grassroots Friends of the Green Line at www.fogl.us. The views expressed in this article are solely those of Mr. Alpern.)
Vol 13 Issue 99
Pub: Dec 8, 2015