June 1, 2004
Noise Free America
For immediate release
Madison: Northeast Los Angeles, California has won this month’s Noisy Dozen award from Noise Free America for tolerating a steady drumbeat of invasive, illegal, and unhealthy noise. Residents of Highland Park and Echo Park get hammered constantly from boom car stereos and loud parties.
A local resident, Anna Jones, commented, “In Northeast Los Angeles, the mentality seems to be ‘the louder the boom boom, the better.’ We are pounded by noise. I have been blasted by bass hip hop since before 8:00 this morning. I called the police department at 11:00 am and I guess they are just too busy to come out and take care of the issue. The police do not seem to realize that obnoxious noise is physically dangerous and destroys communities. My head aches thinking about the hoops I need to jump through just to be able to not experience 6.5 on the noise Richter scale daily!”
Anna Jones also stated that “it has been very difficult to get local elected officials to take action against noise. I’ve noticed that if it doesn’t affect the governing class directly, they really don’t care. It is nearly impossible to get witnesses to speak out to the police, for fear of retaliation by gang members who drive boom cars and have loud parties. The community wants peace and quiet–but the police aren’t protecting us.”
Ted Rueter, Noise Free America’s director, noted that “what’s happening in Northeast Los Angeles is happening all across the country. Step one: boom car companies market their thunderous equipment to young males. Step two: young males determine that making lots of noise is ‘cool.’ Step three: the police ignore the problem, citing ‘other priorities.’ Step four: a community is decimated, with citizens unable to relax, sleep, or enjoy their own homes. Property values plummet and good people flee. The bad guys take over, and the situation is completely out of control.”
A report from the United States Department of Justice confirms that loud car stereos are linked to crime, drugs, and violence. The report encourages local police departments to take strong action against boom car stereo drivers.
Ms. Jones concluded, “I am considering leaving Los Angeles for good. I am at my wit’s end with a system that supports stupid behavior and disregards the good folks. No one should have to put up with the abuse from noise terrorists. No one should have to put up with being ignored by the police. It is time that the police and elected officials took noise violations seriously. The onslaught of noise is seriously damaging America’s quality of life.”
Noise Free America is a national citizens group dedicated to fighting noise pollution. Past “winners” of the award include Flowmaster, Governor Gray Davis, and Viper car alarms. Noise Free America’s web site is http://www.noisefree.org.