Los Angeles; the City of Fallen Angels

1. Thesis

Different people view the city of Los Angeles in different ways.  I personally think that it is a beautiful city. It has some of the most beautiful corals and tropical marine fish at the pacific, not to mention the beautiful view of skyscrapers from Griffiths Park. The sandy beaches, the palm trees, the night clubs, movie theatres, Hollywood; these are some of the things that make LA special. They make it the City of Angels. Despite all that, LA leaves a lot to be desired. The streets now loom with people in perpetual pursuit of money and fame and most of them end up in drug rings or robbery gangs. Though statistics show that the crime rates in LA are reducing drastically over the years, the number of casualties is still alarming. So far, a total of 204 homicides have been reported from January 1 2012 to May 6 2012(The Homicide Report, Los Angeles Times,) and those are only the cases that the authorities got to know about. The city of angels has changed; it is now a city of fallen angels.

2. Killings

A lot of murders have been committed in Los Angeles. This city has housed some of the most feared serial killers in history. An example is Richard Ramirez who was also known as the night stalker. He was so gruesome; he even drank the blood of some of his victims. When the authorities finally caught up with him, he had committed a total of 13 murders, 5 attempted murders, 14 burglaries and 11 sexual assaults. Something that made it worse was the fact that, he would usually surprise most of his victims at the comfort of their homes, maybe sleeping or relaxing, unaware that anyone was after them.

This is a person who is supposed to have lived in ‘a city of angels’. However, he is not an angel, angels protect and love one another; they do not kill or rape them. This just proves that this city is no longer a city of angels, they have fallen.     

3. Gangs

Los Angeles is also home to some of the most feared gangs. An example is the bloods gang that was founded mainly to counter the rule of the Crips gang in LA. This gang has expanded ever since it was founded and it is now in almost every state in the US. It is thought to have about 5,000 to 20,000 members. This gang is involved in street-level distribution of methamphetamine, PCP, cocaine, heroin and also marijuana. It is also involved in other crimes like carjacking, auto theft, homicide, drive-by shooting, burglary, assaults, threats and even murder.

 These gangs terrorize civilians and rival gang members as well. They also pose a threat to other people who might knowingly or unknowingly get in their way. They are not there to help people; they are there to harm them. These people are definitely not angels.  

4. Hate Crimes

A lot of hate crimes have also been perpetrated in LA. These are mostly on the basis of one’s race, sexual orientation or gender. An example is the mass shooting at a Jewish Day Care Center in August by one Buford O. Furrow. Buford had left his home targeting three Jewish institutions; except there was too much security at the institutions, and he could not risk getting apprehended. He then drove to the Day Care Center in LA where he opened fire wounding five people, three of them children. He had left his home with the intention of “killing Jews”. This man was attacking people because of their race, something they did not deserve. He was not an angel, but someone who wanted to hurt others simply because he did not like their race. He even dared to hurt children, who were obviously innocent. Angels should love one another and guide them, and Burton did just the opposite-he tried to hurt them. He, in my humble opinion, has the qualities of a fallen angel.

 5. Prostitution and Gay Practices

A lot of brothels have also been started in LA, some secret and others out in the open. In fact, people are so comfortable talking about the brothels, that some have dedicated websites solely to provide reviews on LA brothels.  Also, some people are starting to get more comfortable with gay behavior and it is almost the norm, as shown in the movie; Going Down in La-la Land.

5.1. Going Down in La-la Land; The Movie

This movie by Casper Andreas features a young man, Adam, who leaves New York to go to Los Angeles in search of acting jobs, except he doesn’t get any.  He puts up with his friend, Candy who also wants an acting job, though landing a rich man seems more important to her.  After looking around for quite some time, he lands an office job which is actually a gay pornography outfit. He starts the job, but decides to get on camera since he needs more money. He later becomes a male escort and falls in love with a male client who is actually supposed to be a star of a hit show. This movie almost accurately depicts Hollywood with a knowingness only an insider would have.

            Most people there are so fixated on getting money; they have no problem forgoing their morals. They would do anything for money. That is why Adam finally agrees to become a gay porn actor though it might not be what he wanted to do at first. Candy would also rather spend her time looking for a sugar daddy instead of looking for a legitimate job. She has no qualms with sleeping with someone for money. This mirrors the mindset of most LA dwellers and the things they would do for (easy) money.

It also puts a lot of emphasis on the sexual immorality of people in Hollywood. The lives of most people simply revolve around the gym by day and gay bars by night. They are okay with that lifestyle. The gay trend is also emphasized by Adam.  He crosses the line for the sake of money when he agrees to be a male escort for other male clients. He has no problem with bending his morals to earn some cash.  Afterwards, he even falls in love with one of his male clients. It is like he has broken whatever rules that would prevent a man from being with another man. It is no longer weird for him.

Prostitution and gay behavior does not characterize angels. It is forbidden in the Bible. This just goes on to show how much LA has veered from what is right. It has the characteristics of a city of fallen angels.

6. The Brighter Side

            Nevertheless, most people have had great experiences in Los Angeles. Some immigrants have even been quoted saying that they feel freer in LA, as far as religion is concerned. There is so much to choose from and they do not feel restrained. They feel that LA gave them a chance to be themselves. Muslim and Hindu immigrants also appreciated the fact that they could live more honestly in LA. They did not have to bribe anyone or even participate in corruption as is the norm in their countries (Miller et al 141).  

Most LA dwellers are also good people, who devote their time to helping other people. Some churches like the Tempro Calvario in LA have a program dubbed “Adopt a Family” that helps families that may need help to adjust in the society. Church members, who are mostly immigrants, make it their duty to adopt other immigrants and help them before they can finally stand on their.   One faithful also says, “We are not volunteers. We are servants doing God’s work.” (Miller et al 146)

This shows the level of commitment and goodwill of these people. Helping these families is not something that they do simply because they want to volunteer; they do it because they are serving their Lord. They believe in their course and they live by it. I don’t think a mission can get more humble than that. This is the level of kindness and love that the people of LA have. They have no problem helping their brethren. This is what makes LA special. It is the beauty of LA.

7. Conclusion

            A lot of evil deeds go down in LA, including the ones that are not documented in this essay. People die every day, or get assaulted or mugged. However, there is a bigger picture, and it is the beauty of LA. No matter what kind of criminals live in LA, or what they do, it is still home to millions of people and good things happen here most of the time. People may have changed, and LA may now be the city of fallen angels, but it is a nice place, full of great people- well, most of the time- and a lot to offer. That is all that matters.

 

Works Cited

“The Night Stalker: Serial Killer Richard Ramirez.”  <crimelibrary>, n.d. Web 12 May 2012.

        http://www.trutv.com/library/crime/serial_killers/notorious/ramirez/terror_1.html

Miller, Donald E, et al.  Title of the Book. City of Publication: Publisher, Year of Publication. Print

“Bloods.”  n.p, n.d.  Web 12 May 2012.

        http://www.nationalconcernedofficers.com/Bloods.htm

“A Profile of Race-Bias Hate Crime in Los Angeles County.” Western Criminology Review,n.d Web 12 May 2012.

         http://wcr.sonoma.edu/v2n2/umemoto.html

Going Down in La-La Land. Dir. Casper Andreas. Embrem Entertainment, 2012. DVD.

Miller, Donald E, et al.  Title of the Book. City of Publication: Publisher, Year of Publication. Print

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