Hello My Name is _____________ and I’ll Be Your Tour Guide Through South Central Los Angeles

Now living in Los Angeles we hear and see some crazy shit on the daily. I mean c’mon this is Los Angeles. And just when I thought the last crazy thing couldn’t be topped, we do it again.

The question was simple.

Would you want to take a tour of gang turf?

My answer…

No, I already live on the tour route.

It seems that a former gang member has come up with the idea to offer two hour $65 tours of Los Angeles gang areas, focusing on South Los Angeles.

Alfred Lomas is the man behind LA Gang Tours, and says that the whole idea behind to his non-profit group is to create jobs and open the lines of communication between rival gangs. He’s even gone so far as to work out an agreement he claims with three of the largest gangs to make sure that there are no shootings between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. when the tours are expected to take place beginning in January.

Now I have a few questions.

The first being, is if Alfred can get a cease-fire among rival gangs, what’s up with the LAPD? I’m just saying.

The second is, considering that many Blacks and Latinos live in the areas that LA Gang Tours is going to focus on, who do you think their clientele is going to be?

I’ll tell you, the same white, Asian, and European tourists that shell out money for maps that show you where Hollywood celebrities lives. They are also the same people you find daily on Hollywood Boulevard oohing and ahhing over a Hollywood Walk of Fame star that was just urinated on by some mentally disturbed homeless man.

LA Gang Tours is attempting to exploit our community. We don’t need an escort through our own neighborhood because we already live here. In fact, the idea is so damn demeaning that I wouldn’t expect it from one Alfred Romas.

Look—I already have to deal with the gentrification of my neighborhood and now you’re telling me that my block has been added to the tour route of Los Angeles gang areas. Uh uh, I’m not having it. We’ve been exploited for far too long for it to continue with this madness.

If someone wants to take people on a tour of Los Angeles they should start with Skid Row and explain how while downtown Los Angeles is a stones throw from Hollywood and Beverly Hills and in the middle of an economic boom, but yet and still is the homeless capital of the nation. From there they can head over to City Hall to watch the circus act that is otherwise known as the Los Angeles City Council. If tourists really want to see gang violence up close, they can visit a local Los Angeles Unified School District campus and see firsthand how Los Angeles is failing future generations to come and setting them up for a life of violence, crime, and or welfare. After that they can drop by the morgue to see what gang violence is really all about.

As a bonus, maybe the tour can include a trip to one of the 500 and something local marijuana dispensaries where tourists can sample the goods.

All I know is that the people who live in South Los Angeles are NOT freaks in a circus for the amusement of paying foreigners.

The Court of Public Opinion

  • Social Justice Activist

    I live in the Castro in SF, and we still have these huge tour busses rolling through the neighborhood looking at the gays. Seems to be a lot of tourists from Asia….