Is Venice ‘Going Backward’?

In last week’s story about the impending closure of Windward Farms following a 120% rent increase, store owner John Shin said of Venice: “It’s no longer a community anymore — it’s a place for rich people to invest in. … It definitely feels like we’re going backward. The upper tier is buying it up; the bottom tier is homeless people from all over the country; the middle is gone.”

That statement has generated lots of reaction on social media, including:

Marc Blackbird: This is sad and 120% is crazy — way beyond anything that should be acceptable.

Venice Beach Freakshow: Same thing happened to the Freakshow and the new building owners have the nerve to keep our old space empty for over two and a half years now. Our Freakshow family has lost everything. … For what?

Jenni Michelle: Wow. Time to get out of Venice — and L.A. altogether. What a shame!

Scott Rigelman: You will find this sort of thing happening every-
where in the country. No escape! In NYC half of storefronts are empty because rent is impossible.

Sean Ruchti: Our leaders have sold us out to the highest bidder on a global level.

Patrice Renee Marquez: Disagree. There are plenty of us middle class left.

Alma D. Petralli: This place was good, but the workers weren’t so friendly. Not going to miss it at all.

Tim Miller: This is awful. Have shopped there since the day it opened.

Regan Kibbee: Sad news. Thank you, John Shin and your friendly staff, for the years of service to the community. This great little market will be missed!

Sucker-Punched in a Crosswalk

Re: “The Argonaut Interview: Mike Bonin on the Homelessness Crisis, Part 2,” news, Oct. 10

Mental illness and drugs are an issue here in Marina del Rey as well.

I was assaulted in the middle of the crosswalk at Glencoe and Maxella avenues at around 5:45 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11. A woman who appeared to be homeless was walking in the opposite direction and while we passed she punched me in my jaw. The punch was powerful enough to make me stumble, and yes —when hit that hard you really do see stars.

What surprises me is that no one stopped to see if I was OK, even the man in a pickup truck right in front of the assault. He saw it, yet did nothing. I do hope something like this never happens to his wife, girlfriend or daughter. Have we all become so apathetic toward others?

Pamela Bastian

Marina del Rey

It Isn’t Just Los Angeles

Re: Mike Bonin Interview, Parts 1 and 2, Oct. 3 & 10

My cousin in Westchester sends me The Argonaut up here in central Michigan from time to time. You did a really great job on the interview with Bonin. From what I can tell you reported very accurately.

We have a homeless problem here which is much smaller. For a couple years I tried to give money to a homeless guy who really seemed unconcerned about living publicly on the streets. He would throw the remnants from his lunch on the sidewalk in front of him rather than walk 15 feet to put them in the trash barrel. I backed off from him because he had a cigarette habit that I concluded I could not afford any longer. Your article talked about 30,000 homeless. I was overwhelmed with just one home-
less guy.

The advertising in The Argonaut makes me believe it reaches a lot of people who do not have to deal with homelessness personally. Good for you for raising consciousness about the problem.

Rick Luczak

Bay City, MI