During a Venice Town Hall meeting, Los Angeles City Councilmember Mike Bonin explained to 35-year Venice Beach resident David Busch that he is willing to talk to unhoused persons individually, but Mr. Bonin refuses to meet with “activists—outside agitators.” Mr. Busch has been requesting a meeting “organized by homeless people themselves” regarding public toilets, parking, camping, and other services. He asked, “Don’t you think after 2 years in office it is time you meet with us, rather than you just sending more police to this community?”
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If you vote, remember that Councilmember Mike Bonin called people who are outraged at cops murdering people, "outside agitators."
At Thursday’s LAPD community meeting in Venice following the fatal shooting of unarmed 29-year-old Brendon Glenn, also known to friends and the Rainbow Family as Dizzle, community members took the microphone for public comment.
David Busch, who first moved to Venice in 1980 to work as a bus mechanic for the transit system but has been priced out of the housing market in recent years, noted that police "shoot to kill disproportionately poor people. Sixty percent of the people in Los Angeles really can't afford, by any major economist's point of view, more than 0-500 a month in rent. Don't you think…you should be at the forefront of housing people instead of just sending the police after them?"
Busch first became homeless in 1994—and was sentenced to 120 days in Orange County Jail—for “refusing to be coerced into a shelter that made you sit through religious sermons before they would give you a bed or feed you.” He explained after the meeting, “I have slept ‘outside’ on the streets ever since—rather than bow down to such increasing human rights violations here in America.” For six years now, Bonin has played a role in “denying over 300 homeless people here in Venice their fundamental human right to a humane toilet.”
He addressed Councilmember Mike Bonin at Thursday’s town hall meeting: “Last year a group of us who are homeless contacted your office and asked for a meeting with homeless people. Your staffer, after three phone calls, this was last year before Christmas, he laughed. He said you are not meeting with people who are homeless. Except for meetings that are organized by religious leaders.”
Busch grilled Bonin: “Where is the toilet? Where is the camping place? 6 years ago you stood with Bill Rosendahl in this place and said we were going to get toilets, we were going to get services, we were going go get RV parking. Where have you done that? You're standing here. I want an answer. We want results."
Voices from the crowd echoed: “We all want answers!”
Bonin's answer: "I meet and talk to people who are unhoused every week. I have met with people on 3rd Ave. I have sat and spoken with people on Ocean Front Walk. I have met with people in St. Joseph's Center. I have met with people who are sleeping outside my office in Westchester. I have met with people at the Winter Shelter. I have met with people who live on the streets near the VA. I do it all the time. What I'm not going to do is take a meeting organized by activists—outside agitators who are trying to..”
At this point, the room crowd erupted in outrage at the slur just uttered by elected representative Mike Bonin.
Before handing the microphone to the next person in line, Busch declared, “Maybe we should stop talking to politicians. How many times have I asked you for a toilet?”
For the record, David Busch has “lived on the streets in Santa Monica, Skid Row and Venice since 1996. I've lived on the streets here longer than Mike Bonin has been HOUSED on the Westside.”
SEE VIDEO [3:45 length]
David Busch vs. Mike Bonin by The Syndicate.Info
Original: Councilmember Bonin Calls People of Venice Outraged by Police Murder “Outside Agitators"