Don’t Incarcerate the Ice Cream Man

small.100_0659-2small.100_0601small.100_0478small.100_0486-3small.100_0525small.CASTRO-GARCIA, HEBER ACI 4-15-88 42.00 b LAMCsmall.DSC_0509small.DSC_0515ANTONIO, PEDRO 06-18-81ALEXANDER, CHARLES 3 We have written before about the BIDs’ hysterical, dishonest opposition to City Councilman José Huizar‘s proposal to legalize street vending. We’ve discussed the fact that many of the BID board members who oppose this law are themselves criminals, although not the kind who get prosecuted for their dirty deeds. We’ve written about how their froth-mouth rage at this relatively small move in the direction of sanity puts them in opposition to democracy itself. But we haven’t yet written about the very human cost of continuing to outlaw street vending in Los Angeles.

See these images? Those are actual street vendors humiliated, arrested, and handcuffed (HANDCUFFED?!) by the BID patrol in 2007. Why do they handcuff them? Are they afraid of getting attacked by the ice cream man? The bacon dog lady? That they’re sadists is the only plausible reason.

But the BIDs won’t be honest and say that they oppose the law because they like arresting the ice cream man, that it gets them high on their rich white power when they see the heladero led off in chains at their command, that it gives them a thrill when their BID Patrol minions arrange the heladero and his wares in a tableau of shame and waste. Instead they talk about safety, cleanliness, law, order, and all the other lies they rely on when they start to feel like the world they’re meant to control is getting the least little bit off its chain. You can read a bunch of their lies here, which is a link to a spool of letters sent to the City Council regarding Huizar’s proposal. You can read more of this junk on an ongoing basis by watching the City Clerk’s file on the matter.

As you read their lies, their false concerns about safety and law and order, don’t forget where it ends up, where the rubber hits the road, how the law actually plays out on the street. It ends with the heladero chained to a bench in Hollywood, watching his ice cream and his dreams melt into garbage because of rabid, hateful, power-tripping BID board members and the armed thugs they pay to terrorize the city. It ends with citations, jail, fines, court fees, immigration consequences, human suffering. And all for nothing. Their theories may look nice on paper or sound nice when said sincerely by smiling, friendly white people at a meeting in a posh hotel, but they end in guns, in chains, in pain.

All images are in the public domain since they’re public records, and we obtained them from the Hollywood Property Owners Alliance via the California Public Records Act. You can get the full-sized images from here:
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There are thousands more such images available here.


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