Monday, April 19, 2010

"Don't let the spires crumble",0,2577901.story

This editorial from the LA Times is about the Watts Towers. Finished after 33 years of work in 1954, the Watts Towers have become a symbol of Watts and are a National Historic Landmark. However, they are falling into disrepair. According to the article, upkeep for the Towers has been a drain on the city’s treasury for years. Now the Los Angeles County Museum of Art has stepped in to help with their upkeep and to seek private donations. Because of their location in “a poor and gang-wracked neighborhood”, the towers have been saved from the wrecking ball but they have also not enjoyed the potential fame that could have come from being located in a better-off area of the city. Resource wise, the Towers have been forgotten by the city, just like the neighborhood of Watts depicted in Killer of Sheep set more than ten years after the Watts Riots of 1965 was forgotten. The landscape in Killer of Sheep was still not rebuilt after the riots that left piles of rubble that the children turned into their playgrounds. Watts was left to its own devices to pick up the pieces after the riots. Without more funding, the Watts Towers will continue to crumble. Both the Towers and the neighborhood need help to turn into something more than the broken shells left from the Riots and poverty. One group helping is not enough- change inside and outside needs to happen for the advancement of the neighborhood and the Towers.

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