“Blood-Thirsty Assemblages…” – Don’t Worry, Dems, Be Happy

Denver always was the rootingest town for blood-thirsty assemblages. The citizens never–to my knowledge–failed to risk life or limb in behalf of witnessing a lynching, a gun-duel, a foot-race between an adulterer and his beloved’s husband, or any other spicy drama involving mayhem and assault on the person. After a fray, there usually were three lists of casualties given out: one for each of the two contending forces; and a third list–quite often the largest–that of innocent bystanders maimed or slain.

Gene Fowler – “Timber Line”

The LoDo section of Denver is where, no doubt, Dems will flock to carouse amongst the delights of booze and tunes, dancing and dining, rubbing one thigh up against another, hooking-up with, um, a hooker or just finding a warm body to share a hotel room for the night. Yessiree, LoDo will be the happenin’ place in Denver when the donkeys come to town.

Seems, though, that what used to be called “closing time” and is now apparently (I don’t get out much anymore) called “let out time” around midnight on Sundays and two a.m. on other nights has , for LoDo, become pretty much an opportunity for blood-thirsty assemblages, mayhem and madness.

This past weekend, for example, a shootout occurred in a parking lot pretty much in the center of LoDo. One side of the combatants apparently fired a weapon nines times at their adversary and, apparently, the adversary just happened to have a shotgun which he fired at the fleeing shooter. The shotgun toting combatant then turned his weapon on Denver police officers and, yeah, he was shot to death by the cops. The dead man’s friend was also shot by the cops and remains in serious condition at Denver Health Medical Center. Pellets from the shotgun also hit four bystanders, who weren’t seriously injured.

So, in steps the Hick–Mayor John Hickenlooper–whose hyperbole was predictable, given that the Democratic National Committee is riding his back like a monkey on steroids because, well, the donkeys are coming to Denver and it’s the Hick’s responsibility to assure peace and tranquility for the revelers.

The Hick presented himself as some kind of tough guy in a press conference and declared, “Let me be clear: This community will not accept violence–not a day of it, not a week of it, not a month of it–and certainly not a summer of it.”

Okay. Let me just say the tough guy persona doesn’t fit the Hick well. See, he’s kind of, well (excuse me if I offend), a nerdy sissy type, you know, one of those effete liberals who, as a kid, was probably passionate about debate and the striations of rocks (he did, after all set-out to become a geologist and, there’s nothing wrong with that; he did, after all work himself into a millionaire and the mayor’s chair), rather than the kind of kid whose passion, whose dream was to throw that hail mary pass that would win the big game in the last two minutes on the clock.

Well, the Hick’s resolve is to reevaluate gun laws in Denver and also take a look at changing the “let out” time for LoDo bars.

For once, I’ve got to agree with the wing nuts: Outlaws will find a way to arm themselves no matter what a municipality does to control guns. No argument. Simple math. It doesn’t take a genius or a police chief to understand this truth. So, have at it, Hick. This is an idea that kind of mirrors your skewed perception of how the homeless need to be “handled” in Denver: hand them the keys to their own condo, give them a cell phone or beeper and God will ascend to his heaven and all will be right with the world.

As to changing the “let out” hours for LoDo clubs and bars. Hmmm… Okay, let’s say you change “let out” to midnight, every night. Would that preclude what occurred this past weekend? Nah, don’t think so. Do you think, Mister Mayor, that if the “let out” time is cut by a few hours, that the party will not become more immediate, that the booze will not flow more intensely, that the conflicts of ego (that surely lead to the decisions to settle those conflicts with weapons), will become, too, more immediate? See, Mister Mayor, in this case, the young folk patronizing the clubs and bars in LoDo will, if their party time is shortened by a few hours, just simply pack more party into the hours they’ve got. There won’t be any diminution of blood-thirstiness simply because of your naivete that sending the kids home earlier will, yes, place God back in His heaven and make all right with the world.

Worrisome comment from Michael Hancock, the President of the Denver City Council, announcing that the donkeys coming to Denver in August shouldn’t be worried. “Downtown will probably be the safest place to be when the convention is in town,” he said.

Hope you don’t have to eat those words, Mister Hancock. And, I’m sincere in hoping that Mister Hancock is right.

But, folks are folks and “let out” time in LoDo is what it is and no matter what time it occurs shit happens. Of course, if you’ve got cops in riot gear, your SWAT team ready, the tear gas loaded, the water cannons ready, your nightsticks handy, then, well, “let out” time in LoDo might become something else, reflective of Gene Fowler’s observation that Denver is “…the rootingest town for bloodthirsty assemblages.”

Come on, Donkeys. Don’t worry. Be happy.

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2 Responses to “Blood-Thirsty Assemblages…” – Don’t Worry, Dems, Be Happy

  1. ohwilleke says:

    The idea, based upon London’s experience, would be to have some bars close at midnight, at which point partiers would move onto other bars which close at 2 a.m., at which point partiers would move to fewer still bars that would close at 4 a.m., or something like that.

    By squeezing the party ever narrower, but not ending it, the hope is that there wouldn’t be such a violent end.

  2. georgeindenver says:

    Thanks Andrew. It would be interesting to know if the “London experience” has solved what is probably a fairly universal (in Western society) phenomenon. I guess I would argue for a voluntary move by club/bar owners in LoDo to take it upon themselves to stagger their let out times. Maybe on a revolving basis that would allow parity amongst the bars/clubs. Don’t know. The more interesting question is why this let out time behavior has devolved into what it is today? Don’t recall such behavior when I used to hit the joints.

    George

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