The incident I described in “This Painting is a Lie” (blog entry #2) happened toward the end of 2019. In January of 2020, the City of Los Angeles began a clean-up operation in the park, which included gathering tents and other property belonging to the people encamped there. Some residents in the neighborhood had complained about the build-up of trash and other unsanitary conditions. The tent-dwellers resisted. Joined by homeless advocates, they sat on the pavement and blocked maintenance crew trucks, chanting “Fight, fight, fight! Housing is a human right!” The main point of contention was whether the operation constituted a clean-up or an eviction.
Since then, more protests and confrontations have followed, including one arrest of a homeless man for battery against a police officer. The city has responded with more efforts to bring services to the unhoused residents, but the situation remains unresolved.