Lunchtime Photo

This is the street I grew up on. It used to be lined with trees, but we lost some of them to disease and then the rest to the city, which decided about 20 years ago that it couldn’t afford to maintain them. Nor, thanks to liability reasons of some kind, would it allow homeowners to take over the maintenance. So now the whole neighborhood looks denuded.

The electric pylon in the background has always been there, but it didn’t used to glow. It does that now because Southern California Edison leased the right-of-way under the electric lines to a company that stores RVs there. The storage space is lighted with intensely bright sodium bulbs that cast an orange glow for hundreds of feet. That’s why the pylon now glows orange.

This neighborhood is almost exactly as old as me: we moved in when I was about six months old. My mother is one of the few remaining original buyers still living there.

July 24, 2010 — Garden Grove, California

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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