The unequal surveillance by L.A.'s most notorious aerial polluters provide yet another example of why climate change and racial justice are inseparable.
The helicopters are like building prisons and keeping the death penalty - their use plays well with voters by making politicians who support such things appear to be tough on crime. Many voters respond to such theatrics much more than they respond to the fact that these things don't actually reduce crime rates.
I'm not sure what the solution might be, other than protests to call attention to the problem. Articles like this certainly point us in the right direction.
I live in an area of LA where we get these flyovers constantly. When they get close to your house it’s really scary. I’m from Texas and was not used to this when I moved here, and thought it meant there was like an active criminal running around who could come in my house and hurt me--I’d close my doors and stuff. I learned quickly that these were just an intimidation ploy by the local police. I used to work across the street from an airport, and it’s kind of like that some days with the number of these invasive species birds flying over.
Excellent reporting, and with things like the audit occurring there does seem to be a collective push to hopefully solve this issue.
Thank you so much for this reporting, Arielle. I recently stayed in Downtown LA while visiting a friend and was like what is going on. The noise, yes, and those ridiculously bright searchlights! This reporting was another tally for 'Racism: why we can't have nice things.'