Friday, May 29, 2009

You gotta fight! For your right! To Parrrrtayyyy!

This is our last day at this URL. We're over at reclaimingthetitle.wordpress.com. If you come here next week we'll be updating less than usual (aka not at all). So please join us at the new digs, and enjoy this last post on the original site. Appropriately it's about racist, rich white people.


We haven't commented on this yet, let's remedy that. Maxim's is suing to stay open after a group of Brookside residents successfully lobbied to have it's permit to be pulled despite the fact that they were the only group of people to really oppose Maxim's. And when we say only group we really mean the only group. This wasn't even the official Brookside association of stuck up old white people. It was just a bunch of people who were pissy because it wasn't the upscale expensive restaurant owner Bobby Dhillon said it was going to be. Because, as we all know, someone's already got a stranglehold on the expensive, upscale restaurant market.

Since the whole restaurant thing wasn't working out, Dhillon made the savvy business decision to switch formats at night and turned the bar area into a nightclub. Because when business goes sour you make changes, instead of bitching to your friends about unfair imaginary boycotts.

So an out of town businessman opens up a business in a vacant building (in this case the old Mallard's) and finds success after some initial bumps in the road and strengthens the local entertainment scene while he's at it. It's a fairy tale story and exactly what the city wants, right? Everybody wins!

Oh wait, this is Stockton. It can't be that simple. Especially because the key to Maxim's success apparently involved playing (gasp!) hip-hop (or as a Recordnet commenter referred to it "annoying boom boom noises")! And, I don't need to tell you that hip-hop is a form music that's usually popular with (whispers) black people. Brookside's track record with minorities is well documented, so they proceeded to complaining about noise, lies, and increased crime.

That last one is interesting considering Stockton PD straight up said the restaurant hadn't caused an uptick in crime. And they should know, the highest concentration of cops in all of Stockton is in Brookside. All they had to report was a single stabbing in the parking lot in the whole year Maxim's has been doing business. They must have missed the "gun battle" Recordnet commenter PeterChu witnessed (and apparently didn't report) involving what he assumed were Maxim's patrons. Why did he assume they were from Maxim's? Unless he was directly involved in said gun battle, it just takes us to the point of this whole issue. He judged a book by its cover. Its dark-skinned, hip-hop loving cover.

Racism has been at the center of this issue since it started. Even Maxim's lawyer, David LeBeouf, straight up said it was because Brookside folk don't like black people in their neighborhood. Lawyers are supposed to dance around the issue and put things diplomatically, but hey, wild accusations of racism work too. Mostly because it's totally true. LeBeouf even offered to amend the permit to allow certain types of music, but disallow hip-hop/rap. Now, most normal people would say "Hey, isn't that kind of racist?", but not Brookside. They don't like it because it's unenforcible, not because it's totally racist. Although I would totally have joined the committee responsible for deciding what music was acceptable and what constituted hip-hop had the City Council accepted that proposal.

Of course, if they had accepted that proposal, Brookside's claim that the loud music is a nuisance would be exposed as bullshit. Loud hip-hop isn't ok but loud jazz is? That makes no sense. Loud is loud. Plus, there are plenty of house parties thrown in Brookside on a weekly basis that feature loud music (and occasionally hip-hop!). The difference between that and Maxim's? Well, Maxim's isn't a bunch of entitled white kids.

So yeah, we've debunked Brookside's claims that Maxim's attracts crime and pointed out that their noise complaints are total bullshit, so that leaves only one more problem that they have with Maxim's that doesn't involve race. The "Bobby Dhillon lied to us and said this was going to be a family restaurant!" part. To which we say, grow the fuck up! This is the real world we live in, people lie all the fucking time. And the thing is, Dhillon didn't lie. As far as I know, Maxim's is still a fancy family style restaurant during the day. It's just that occasionally at nights the bar is really hopping and it resembles a night club. You're going to fault a guy for running a business? Like we said earlier, business plans change. It happens. Sorry if you wanted an upscale family joint, but if you wanted it that bad you should have gone there. They're a business, not a fucking charity, they have to turn a profit. Trying to limit how they turn a profit by limiting the music they can play actually is a violation of their first amendment rights. Sure, it might be a very loose translation of the firt amendment, but if they want to use it to tell the world (or at least their bar area) "Awww skeet skeet!" then by all means it's their right to do so.

Luckily, Maxim's isn't going to take this lying down. They're challeneging the City's ruling to deny them an entertainment permit (which may have already been ruled on by now, news is moving slow). So hopefully they get an injuction or whatever and get to keep on partying. Because with publicity like this, you can imagine the amount of people that are going to show up this weekend to give Brookside the proverbial middle finger by loudly partying their asses off. Brookside wanted a fight and it looks like Maxim's is prepared to fight back. They've only been here a year and they got this Stockton thing down pretty good. So fight on Maxim's. Fight for our right to party (We're pretty sure this song would not be banned due to the color of their skin).

37 comments:

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