It’s good to be rich.
In 2020, The Case, Malibu’s first gated community in more than 20 years, will be opening up. Each of the new homes will have a price tag of $40 million to $60 million, six-foot walls and given the increase in robberies in this area, the community will feature a 24-hour guard tower.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, “Data from the LAPD’s West L.A. Division, which covers Brentwood and Pacific Palisades, burglaries are up 14 percent over the same period in 2017 and up 41 percent over 2016, and the prospect of a 24-hour guard gains appeal.”
Also on the list of new gated communities are The Mountain in Beverly Hills; Park Bel Air property across from the Beverly Hills Hotel and Beverly Park, which is home to Mark Wahlberg, Denzel Washington and Sumner Redstone; and Brentwood Country Estates off Mandeville Canyon Road, where Arnold Schwarzenegger lives. Tom Brady and wife Gisele Bundchen lived there before they sold their home to Dr. Dre for $40 million in 2014.
The Bel Air Crest and Mulholland Estates are also famed for housing A-listers (Jennifer Lawrence purchased Jessica Simpson’s Mulholland Estates home for $8.2 million in 2014) as are several developments in Calabasas like the Oaks, a double-gated community where the Kardashians, Drake and Justin Bieber have resided.
What about the rest of us? Crime is also on the rise in East L.A., South Central, all of Los Angeles County, the Central Valley, and throughout California.
Crime is on the rise because many like the rich, liberal elite vote for soft-on-crime proposals like Proposition 47. That ballot measure reduced many drug and property crimes from felonies to misdemeanors. Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer talks candidly about the impact of Proposition 47: “There’s an individual we have arrested 83 times since Prop 47 has passed, all on petty thefts, 83 times. That’s their job, that’s their career, they’re emboldened to do it because there’s no consequences.”
But those nice folks in Malibu voted to support Prop. 47 in a big way, by about 75 percent [3,303 yes – 1,200 no]. In the other proposed and guarded communities, the folks in Beverly Hills voted to support Prop. 47, three to one [4,650 yes – 2,225 no].
Why do the rich keep voting for measures that make it easier for criminals? The rich have the luxury to deal with the possible effects. They can protect their families from behind their gates and walls and protection by armed guards.
Again, what about all the rest of us?
What about the working families or single parents who can’t afford to live in these gated communities, with six-foot walls or armed guards? The middle and working class, who go in and out each day to support their family, feed and clothe their kids, and are just trying to get ahead in life. What about those people who are sick and tired of dealing with shoplifters, having their car broken into, and seeing drug addicts shooting up in public places?
The rich get to either make or influence the laws, by using their money to convince the rest of the state how to vote and no matter how it turns out, these elite, then get to protect themselves from any dire consequences.
Raul Riesgo is a commentator who has been featured on Spanish language news outlets Telemundo and Mundo Fox News discussing both political and Latino community issues. Follow him on Twitter @rariesgo