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Monday, February 1, 2016

Way-points on the Hoosegow Trail.

Yeah, Way-points.

Bar patrons packing heat tend to be transitory.

Case in point: Some years ago, um, about 16 years ago, the City of Wilkes-Barre forced the closing of a "nuisance bar" called Chu's. With that, the clientele moved to a new, nearby joint called Desi's Pizza. After Desi's was ordered to shut, the clientele moved down the street a ways, while the owners demanded remonstrance in court.

Here's a snippet of that aforementioned legal tussle...

Between the opening of the Restaurant and March of 2000, the customers patronizing Desi's were predominantly white.   At some time in March of 2000, the City of Wilkes-Barre, its mayor (Thomas D. McGroarty) and chief of police (Anthony J. George), and David W. Lupas, the District Attorney of Luzerne County, Pennsylvania (collectively the “defendants”), acted in concert to bring about the closure of another bar and restaurant called Chu's. Chu's clientele consisted primarily of African-Americans and Latinos.   After Chu's closed, many of its former patrons became regular customers of Desi's.
The residents of Wilkes-Barre are predominantly white.  Following the closure of Chu's and the change in the ethnic composition of Desi's clientele, people living in the area surrounding Desi's began to complain to the defendants about problems allegedly created by Desi's.  Residents complained that Desi's' presence increased “crime, noise[,] and other disturbances.”  App. at 39.   These complaints, however, were in fact motivated by a desire to drive African-Americans and Latinos out of Wilkes-Barre, and the defendants shared this objective.   This desire and “public criticism” of the defendants for failing “to provide adequate policing and law enforcement” in the city motivated the defendants to “embark[ ] on a campaign to close down” Desi's.

So, in effect, while shuttering one bar to calm things down in one neighborhood may pacify a few angry voters, said action simply forces the bad actors to pick up their firearms and spare clips and move to yet another unsuspecting nearby beer garden.

I offer no solution, just an unwanted observation. There might not be an actual solution, just shot-up way-points.


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