The Spirit of South Los Santos: Defining A Generation
Under the influence of LSD, I aimlessly ambled down the streets of Strawberry. Like a moth drawn to the flame, I was lured by the promise of an open liquor store just around the corner. My eyes bounced up and down the cement sidewalk, as my mind played tricks on me & shadow demons danced in the light. The dimly lit alleyways and hovels that make-up the underbelly of the City of Saints spoke to me, as I strolled. The occasional solicitation of "Ey, man. Spare some change?" and "Hi, hon. You looking for a good time?" followed my every step, along with the crunching sound of empty heroin capsules under my feet; almost like walnuts. Around fifteen minutes into my impromptu journey through the remnants of the American Dream, I was stopped by a hood rat. Some pipsqueak Mexican kid with a chip on his shoulder. Just like most kids in South LS; he was slinging dope. I scored an eight ball of blow from the young entrepreneur and went on my merry way.
Finally, I arrived at my destination. A crummy discount liquor store that's open twenty-four hours a day was the place of my refuge. I hunkered inside, bought a bottle of Jack Daniels, some ice and a Styrofoam cup. I drank about a quarter of the bottle before disembarking and slowly making my way back to my apartment in the heart of the concrete jungle. I found myself being hassled by the occasional thug loitering around the Charleston Flats, but was otherwise unhindered in my wandering. That's when a thought suddenly struck me like a bullet to the head; the fate of many individuals caught up in the "South Los Cycle." Centuries after the Spanish conquistadors invaded Southern America and innocent African tribals had been kidnapped from their home; their descendants are still being forced to fight tooth & nail for everything they have.
Being a 3rd generation Mexican-American myself, I was left to contemplate the factors of my own racial inequity. I'm not one to climb up on the metaphorical soapbox and preach for civil rights, but when you walk through the streets of South LS? The biproduct of segregation and the civil rights movement of the sixties is right there, staring you down at gunpoint or hooking you up with your next fix. Such circumstances force a man to ponder his predicament. In the aftermath of the Kyle West riots, South Los Santos is as seedy and lively as ever. Over thirty people die a day in this cold and vicious district of San Andreas that stretches from Strawberry to Rancho. Yet still, nothing is done and nothing changes. I'm left wondering, "What will life be like for the next naive, young generation of LSers that became ensnared in this suburban rat race?" Only time will tell.
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