Leimert Park in Los Angeles is a hub for street preachers, protestors and an assortment of individuals or groups. They gather there with a message to disseminate through bull horns, signs and banners or using the ‘hollar at the top of your lungs’ delivery methods. At various times, you’ll find Rastafari, Muslim, Christian, anti-government marchers and often live music. There are restaurants, clothing stores specializing in African attire, a cultural center, a bookstore and other shops that represent the milieu. It was my turn this day to proclaim my message about Jesus.
The note on this plein air painting reads, ‘This has been the liveliest location yet. One man living in fear of getting shot. A white female photographer who invokes the name of the district councilman gets chased out of the park for probable justifiable cause. A parking enforcement officer with personal and insightful knowledge of this community gives her winded perspective. Yet those who would listen heard about Jesus.’
A note about the photographer: She was not chased out of Leimert Park because she was white, but because she was acting inappropriately. That is, she seemed to be very arrogant and condescending. She acted as though we were all to submit to her desire to photograph us and answer her questions. Several of the brothas in the park politely escorted her to her car.