Things got worse when someone eventually decided to organize a protest in front of the Black. Days before the protest was to take place, the local news vans began circling the lower Newport Avenue area like vultures, giving all kinds of free advertising to the Black, while at the same time, giving Ocean Beach a bunch of negative attention it never asked for. A crowd began to gather the afternoon of the protest, long before it was to take place. It seemed like most people standing around were like me, in that they where just there to see what was going to happen. There were a few protesters. But they were clearly out numbered by angry, local counter-protesters. By the time the protest was supposed to start, a huge crowd of angry faces, most of which I recognized in one way or another, had gathered. They did not hesitate to basically humiliate and intimidate the disorganized protesters, most of which I did not recognize, as they slowly began to show up. One local teen I saw loudly hurling insults, could have been close to living on the street himself, if it was not for the kindness of a local couple, who lovingly raised him as if he was one of there own. I heard his real parents suffered from some kind of chemical dependency. I thought to myself, “He of all people should know that not everyone is lucky enough to be born into a healthy, safe family environment.” But, his words and actions indicated to me that he obviously did not feel this way. Neither did the couple that had been raising him for the past few years. They were there, right behind him.


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