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NEXT L.A. | Dialogue

Leaving Los Angeles

September 03, 1996

My neighbor--call him Mr. Jakes--has a habit of railing against everything. Speeding cars which zip down our street; dogs and their owners sans pooper-scoopers; trash pickup that doesn't--you name it. Most of the time I ignore Mr. Jakes, but a couple of days ago I suggested that since he was always at odds with things, perhaps he ought to secede from Los Angeles.

It seems a popular thing to do lately. What's good for the San Fernando Valley, Venice, San Pedro or Hollywood could work for our neighborhood--specifically our block, right here in the middle of 90035.

I think I'll call a meeting of our neighborhood association--although I'll have to form one in order for it to meet--and present them with the benefits of having our block become independent of Los Angeles.

For example, a couple of my neighbors are looking for work--with our own block/city there would be numerous opportunities for jobs as elected officials, block administrators, bureaucrats, etc. Our block politicians could run on a platform of full employment and win handily. Trash? No problem. One back yard on the block looks like a dump now. What's a few more loads of refuse?

Public safety and law enforcement could easily be handled by any one of several people on the block who make it a habit to know everyone else's business. They're sure to spy any troublesome sorts long before they get a chance to cause any trouble. We could contract with a police or fire agency using the funds we'd generate from catching and fining Mr. Jakes' aforementioned scofflaws.

I'm sure the idea would catch on. The United Blocks of America perhaps?

NORM SCHNEIDER

Los Angeles

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