It is with some pain that I have followed the travails of La Casa de La Raza over the years. It had been expected to become something supernatural, responsible to myth and dreams. As such it has failed. To those who resent Ed St. George’s attempts to resuscitate La Casa, I can say this: Let your expectations become aligned with what is possible.

When I was involved in the Isla Vista Recreation & Parks District it was run by a bunch of incompetents. We badly needed a replacement building for a 50-year-old “mobile classroom” that had never had a roof and was rotten from peak to floor-beam. Having known Ed St. George for his development exploits in I.V. over the years, I walked across the street to ask for his advice. Advice was all I wanted.

Long story short, Ed planned, built, and paid for a beautiful and functional Teen Center that is run by adults at the YMCA. Ed gave what he could, and it is magnificent, permanent, and, above all, reasonable. He got nothing in return besides undying gratitude.

To La Casa’s expectant and anxious stakeholders, I can advise you to let go of expectations, deal soberly and honestly with La Casa’s future needs, not personal gripes and grievances. Think of the future. The past is bankrupt and gone. Listen to Ed and trust him. He will save what can be saved. Yours is the painful letting go of what cannot be saved.


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