CM TRUTH takes on CM PRESS
We've been back for a couple days after the Independence Day holiday last weekend, have tossed a few logs under the old Cauldron and will be back up to full boil soon. In the meantime...
CM TRUTH IS GUEST POSTER
My anonymous amigo over at the presently-dormant CM TRUTH Blog is currently renovating his site, but has asked to post something as a "guest poster" here on A Bubbling Cauldron.
THE "ANTI-CM PRESS"
For some perspective, the CM TRUTH Blog has been a source of facts about graffiti and gangs in our community and region since it's inception. It has provided credible information and photos to help us understand the real meaning of graffiti we see around town. It has been a very welcome counterpoint to the rants, raves, half-truths and spin generated at the CM Press. Although the CM TRUTH has been an excellent resource, the author promises a "new and improved" version soon.
CM PRESS QUOTES IN RED
That being said, the following is his submission. For clarity-sake I've highlighted his quotes from the CM Press in red and the remainder of CM Truth's text in blue. Please feel free to post comments to this post if you choose.
"The CM PRESS is getting reports from folks on the Westside about more Latino gang graffiti in the area."
There has been no increase of gang related graffiti on the West Side. There has been a few examples primarily from VFK and a couple from PVL. The most active gang graffiti wise in Costa Mesa at the moment is VFM in the Mesa North and most of that has been done primarily by one individual.
"And, at the City Council meeting this week, a Councilmember spoke about the "graffiti problem. With all due respect to the Councilmember, Costa Mesa does not have a graffiti problem. It has a Latino gang problem."
There are consistently more acts of vandalism attributed to graffiti and taggers, than that of gang related incidents period. This is in no way an attempt to down play Costa Mesa's gangs or perceived problem, they do that themselves. The majority of the "trouble makers" are in jail and have been for some time. This being done despite an inept council on dealing with gangs and can be attributed to a fine Gang Unit with an understanding of the who, what and why's. We as residents of Costa Mesa should be thankful our Gang Unit has been able to accomplish so much despite councils blatant disregard for the CMPD's recommendations thus far.
"We do not live in a Disneyesque world where inanimate objects have personalities and intelligence. No, the forks and spoons in your kitchen do not suddenly come alive at night and dance around the place. But, I digress. By not seeing the human element involved, successive City Councils have never ended the graffiti in this city. All the Councils have done is spend more tax money to rush out and cover up the graffiti which is usually replaced within a few hours."
It's simply foolish to think any city council can stop graffiti. Some on the other side like to rant and rave every chance they are given and look foolish in doing so since it shows just how out of touch they are with graffiti and graffiti writers. Neither Irvine or Newport Beach for that matter are graffiti free. Neither of those cities have Latino Gangs or a primarily Latino neighborhood, yet they both have graffiti and will continue to do so as they have for years and years. Irvine may not have a territorial Latino Gang but they do have gangs. Non Latino Gangs are not known for their graffiti styles where as Latino Gangs in Southern California have a unique style of graffiti that is recognized world wide and dates back many many years, in fact it dates back to before many of you were born. Why is this important? It's simple, many people like to ignore that fact and focus on Latino Gangs when talking about gangs in their city. The if you can't see it it must not exist notion. Originally traditional Latino gangs were started for protection purposes and marking their territory was a warning that their neighborhood was "protected". White gangs operate very differently and anyone who thinks or suggests Costa Mesa does not have white gang members who both live and commit crimes both petty and violent in Costa Mesa is sadly mistaken. County wide taggers account for the majority of graffiti offenses and one would be a fool to think only Latino youth paint graffiti or even primarily paint graffiti. As we have said before and will say it again, graffiti has no color lines and some of the top writers worldwide as well as many of it originators are white, and that goes for Orange County as well.
"Graffiti is the symptom. It is not the disease itself."
Considering most graffiti found in Costa Mesa is non gang related and committed by people of all ethnicities and monetary backgrounds the above statement is not even worth of comment.
"Rid this city of the gangs which, according to police reports, are almost exclusively Latino and which infest the slums on the Westside, Mesa North and Mesa del Mar and the graffiti will go away and our crime rate will drop."
Supposing Costa Mesa was to rid the city of gangs. According to CMPD gangs attribute for approximately 40% of the cities graffiti, are we to believe the other 60% would just vanish? This is nothing more than typical rhetoric from an ill-informed individual with ulterior motives.
"Just keep treating the symptoms and Costa Mesa will never be able to stop the graffiti or lower the extremely high violent crime rate in this city."
Again Costa Mesa will never stop the graffiti. Graffiti can at times be decreased but for writers, where there is a will there is a way and as one generation fades away another is there lying in wait to "get up". One of the most prolific vandals operating in Costa Mesa right now is a white individual not a Latino.
"As we've written many times, the way to proceed is as follows: 1. Have the CMPD prepare a scatter map (read, pin map) showing the locations where gang members live, where violent crimes occur and where graffiti is found. We believe the map will show just a few well defined areas where the problems originate. We also believe that these well defined areas will have rows and rows of barracks style apartment buildings that are functionally obsolete." There are many spots in Costa Mesa that are continually hit with graffiti far more frequently than any of the neighborhoods some would like you to believe. Over the last several months Shalimar Street has for the most part been graffiti free with a few exceptions here and there and 90% of those exceptions were non gang related examples. "2. Then, concentrate on thinning out the slum apartment buildings in those areas and in ensuring that the apartments that remain are not overcrowded. And, at the same time, step up policing in those areas. Thinning out the slum apartment buildings will give us long term relief, while the stepped up policing will give us some short term help with violent crime and graffiti."
We still are not sure why violent crime and graffiti are being lumped together when referencing Costa Mesa. If any graffiti in Costa Mesa has the potential to spark a violent offense it would be the work of the so called "graffiti vigilante" who obviously has a problem with graffiti and chooses to combat it with graffiti.
"The mistake the City is now making, in addition to thinking that graffiti is the problem and not just a symptom, is in thinking it can make nice with gang members and give them activities and freebies and the problems will go away."
Mistake? The mistake is thinking only gang members paint graffiti. Anyone who truly thinks that kids do not benefit from activities and after school programs is a fool. There are neighborhoods in Santa Ana that during the early 1990's were so bad SAPD seldom went in unless they had a reason. Thanks largely to outreach programs the same can't be said for some of those neighborhoods today.
"The City also wrongly believes that the functionally obsolete apartment buildings can remain and will somehow magically turn into places that will attract upwardly mobile people. This is nonsense. The functionally obsolete apartment buildings need to be razed."
The above statement basically sums up the real reason for the rant. We all know who lives in these neighborhoods. What needs to be done is the landlords need to be held accountable for maintaining their property. If you actually talked to the residents of Shalimar as opposed to being afraid of them you might find they actually don't like living in the conditions their landlords provide them either. You may also want to ask them why they pay more than do many residents on the East Side in nicer complexes. Like all ministers of propaganda, preying on the weak minded individuals who buy into their snake oil rhetoric. The only thing that should be "razed" is the bigotry, hate and uneducated rants coming out of Mensa North especially regarding gangs and graffiti. It also should come as no shock that the man who likes the public to believe he is just a concerned citizen when it comes to violent crime Costa Mesa made no mention of the recent injury involved shooting that took place in Costa Mesa. Could it be due to the fact those arrested do not fit the criteria? Could it be they don't reside on the West Side but in a meth ridden area on the East Side? http://www.ocregister.com/articles/scott-mesa-homicide-2435686-suspicion-accessory
The best part of all this:
"CM PRESS. THE VOICE OF FREE SPEECH,TOLERANCE,IMPROVEMENT AND QUALITY OF LIFE"
Give us a break!
Those are our opinions. Thanks for reading them.
By the way, have you noted that councilman Eric Bever has asked for the Aztec Basketball issue to be reviewed at the next council meeting? Is it a coincidence that he makes this request at virtually the same time the racist blowhard at the CM Press posted two entries on that issue? I think not, particularly when some Bever's comments were virtually echoes of those published by the CM Press. It continues to be a distressing fact of life here in Costa Mesa that a man with such virulent racist views has such an impact on elected leaders and some of those they've appointed.