October 10th

Response to “A Changing Mission- The Story” & “Is Gentrification Ruining Los Angeles or Saving It? Pick a Side”

The article “A Changing Mission- The Story” gives readers insight on the historical Latinx community and how it became the city’s Latinx stronghold, and how gentrification has recently changed that dynamic. The article gives infographics to clearly portray how gentrification has affected the community. It specifically shows the neighborhood demographics, and how the community had a dramatic increase of white residents between 2010 and 2012, Hispanic residents are now no longer the majority. Also the infographics showed the alarming rates of eviction and the median rent prices. They directly affect each other, and I thought it was interesting to see the varying incomes, especially by race. In the 1990s hispanic residents of the community made more than the white residents of the community yet after the San Francisco tech boom that drastically changed, and also caused an influx of affluent newcomers. This causes an income disparity in the community. What I also found interesting was the narrative of the 33 year old New York native, that moved to Mission six years ago and claimed “We’ve been in our neighborhood, employing our neighbors, feeding our neighbors for years” yet his establishments serve wealthy consumers from outside of the neighborhood. Reading this article furthered my personal belief that gentrification displaces the neighborhood’s existing culture.

The article “Is Gentrification Ruining Los Angeles or Saving It? Pick a Side” was a great depiction of the discourse that goes on about gentrification. It showcases the dilemma we go through as we look at both sides of gentrification. The first part of the article, was difficult for me to read because I felt that it ignorantly disregarded important effects of gentrification. I felt that Art Tavana’s point were oversimplified and sugar coated. Titles like “Safer streets are more important than nostalgia” and “Downtown L.A. is no longer embarrassing” were unnecessary, bias, and offensive. She blankets issues of gang violence in low income cities like Downtown LA with “a drug-dealing epicenter in the 90s, is now a brightly lit Chevron across from a strip of craft coffee, vegan and boho-chic shops that cater to people who don’t carry guns.” I felt her offensive bias, disrupted the points she was trying to make, and furthered the issue of talking about gentrification. It gets too touchy. When she states “Welcome to globalization,and if you’re still freaking out about it, maybe you’d be happier in a bygone era reading The Lexus and the OliveTree. Or move to Cuba, where everything is basically the same as it was in 1960.” it felt like she was trying to persuade you to side with her, instead of just informing you the positives of gentrification. She wasn’t effective for me. On the other side of the article that starts with “Gentrification is a Form of Oppression” I instantly agreed. His points effectively portrayed the negative aspects of gentrification without attacking or evoking any emotive reaction from the reader. The article eloquently speaks on the class disparity gentrification causes, and how it leads to inevitable conflicts between the residents. Also he spoke upon how gentrification is furthering segregation within communities.

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