The City Is the Heart of America

Op-Ed: Villaraigosa: We came together after the 1992 uprising. We can do it now.

I’m in love with Los Angeles. I’m here to tell you why, and it has nothing to do with the movie “Barton Fink.”

No, this love affair is with the city and the people who make the city a home to people from every background, every class, and every race. They are a mix, all but forgotten by the powers that be.

The city is the heart of America, or at least part of America. When I was in kindergarten, all we knew was Los Angeles. We didn’t know where it was, we didn’t know how long it would take to get home, we didn’t know what it looked like and we didn’t know where to find the McDonalds that was supposed to be there. Yet here we were, taking pictures of Venice Beach to post on Facebook. I didn’t realize, until decades later, how many people thought of Los Angeles as their home, not just because it’s America’s quintessential city, but also because of all the other people there are who make Los Angeles their very own.

A friend whose family lives there told me about the time he was taking a walk with his daughter and they came across an open book on the ground. She picked it up and read a page. When his daughter asked why Daddy read the book, he said he just wanted to know the story behind it. I thought he was the type of man who would appreciate the story about the book.

Later, my grandmother told me about her grandmother who was a member of the YWCA. She could tell you all about how they were told by a man in the park to go home when the rain started. Or how there was no drinking water, just a pot of water, and that was it. She had never seen things like that in her previous life.

The point of all this is that I love Los Angeles for a reason, and it is this connection between people and their environment. People from all walks of life have come here because of the weather. It is not just about snow, palm trees, and palm trees

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