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Thursday, August 21, 2008

Southwest Museum Community College??

These are the words of the "COUNCILMAN LAST SEEN CLAIMING VICTORY FOR THE SOUTHWEST MUSEUM AS JOSE HUIZAR", which were printed in his booklet "TOGETHER: Creating a Better Community", handed out to the masses at the "GREAT CD 14 FILIBUSTER EVENT".

"In september 2007, Councilmember Huizar announced the formation of the New Southwest Society, which will raise funds to restore and revitalize the Southwest Museum of the American Indian and Casa de Adobe, two cultural cornerstones in the Mt. Washington community. The Southwest Society has 30 members, including Councilman Huizar, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Council President Eric Garcetti, County Supervisor Gloria Molina, Representative Xavier Bacerra (D-Los Angeles); Assemblymember Fabian Nunez (D-Los Angeles); Assemblymember Anthony Portantino (D-Pasadena); John Gray, President of the Autry National Center, and Suzanne Lummis, granddaughter of the museum's founder.

Councilmember Huizar will continue working with the Autry National Center to ensure that the Southwest Museum's historic buildings and priceless collection are protected and restore for generations to come in Northeast Los Angeles. (page 13 of booklet).
Then there is this today from Ron Kaye.
Under an extraordinary deal, the Los Angeles Community College District quietly agreed to use money from its $3.5 billion bond issue on the Nov. 4 ballot to renovate the Southwest Museum and use it as a satellite campus, thus relieving those costs from the financially-burdened Autry.
The deal was cut without community involvement or discussion and inserted as a line item in the bond issue by College Trustee Mona Field, according to the Arroyo Seco Journal.
"The bond measure plan came as a surprise to participants" at the City Hall hearing, it reported.
Kaye's post on the saga of Los Angeles oldest museum is a "thread of tears" that chronicles the deception of the Autry and their willing political and community enablers.
Yet, due to the diligence of organizations like the Friends of the Southwest Museum, Neighborhood Councils, Newspapers, Blogs and the average citizen, the battle to save one of Los Angeles historic institution can be won.
Your thoughts.........

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Anonymous Anonymous said:

I know several employees of the museum, volunteers from it, and the local residents that are now trying to fight this travesty.

I am extremely disappointed and disgusted in Huizar and those before him, and those who were in charge of the Southwest before it went to the Autry, who did not tend to the needs and issues this important, and one of LA's oldest museums had for many years.

Am I happy the building is being restored? Yes.
Am I happy the collection is gone to the Autry? No.
Do I believe the Autry is "financially strapped"? Heck NO!
Am I sad it is not going to be a museum anymore? Yes, because it will affect the entire neighborhood.
Do I believe the City made this secret deal without informing those who are trying to save the museum or who live in the area? I totally believe it and am incensed by the closed-door policy the City seems to have now when it concerns things that affect the Citizen's of LA.

This is just another prime example of why folks like Huizar, the Mayor, Zine, LaBonge and others need to be voted out of office. They only tend to their political agendas, not the real issues that concern their constituents.
Where is our voice in the discussion? You folks at City Hall forget YOU WORK for US. We voted you in and we can vote you OUT.

I am just appalled by this report. The area is not large enough to support a satellite campus and these politicos know it!
I am sure Charles Lummis, the man who started the Southwest Museum, is turning over in his grave as we speak.

August 21, 2008 10:46 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

"The area is not large enough to support a satellite campus and these politicos know it!"

It is if the satellite is for a very specialized curricula; Spanish, Mandarin & Indian.

August 21, 2008 11:11 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

The money situation at the Autry is a series of contradictions. The Autry actually is cash starved by Jackie Autry who is notoriously stingy with money. By keeping the museum dependent upon her annual contribution, the entire Autry Board of Directors and Management participates in a dance known as "keeping Jackie happy."

Jackie Autry's absolute dictatorial control of the Autry Board may have been OK when she was administering Gene Autry's ego-driven Western Heritage Museum. But when Jackie Autry signed on to care for and respect the cultural heritage of the Southwest Museum, she took on duties way beyond just looking after Gene's closet of cowboy song sheets, guitars, and western wear.

The Southwest's collection is huge and expensive to properly conserve. The incompetent Southwest Museum Board had deferred maintenance of the building for years. When Autry took over, it was claimed it had $100 million of endowment immediately available to do the job. That was the whole reason the Autry was allowed to take charge of these assets in exchange for no money and promises to assure an independently marketed and operated Southwest Museum.

But it seems Jackie had no intention of taking care of the Southwest Museum's nationally significant buildings. She just wanted the collection to increase the prestige of the Autry Museum and the Autry name in the museum world.

Mrs. Autry is wealthy, but her museum is on the edge of bankruptcy every year until she writes the check. It's Jackie's way or the highway because she has unchecked power over her puppet Board of Directors. Her stubborn refusal to comply with fiduciary duties puts both museums at grave risk.

August 21, 2008 12:25 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Are there any Chumash or Tongva on the board? Any native Americans? I never hear anyone talk about them.

This is smelling like a Reconquista history rewrite! What version of history will they be teaching there?

August 21, 2008 12:35 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Today at the Cultural Affairs Commission hearing on whether to move forward wit the Griffith Park Historical Monument application, a lawyer from Lantham and Watkins representing Mrs. Autry sid in public comment that the commission must remove the Autry property from the application.

He practically ordered the commission to do it.


August 21, 2008 2:04 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Sugerman's involved in this deal, too! What's the story on the ethics complaint? Isn't this guy on probation after admitting to overbilling the DWP?

August 21, 2008 3:23 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

What a scam, anyone that falls for this is an idiot. The city''s back door undercover deals need to stop, they suck! Don't prasie them, they don't deserve it! The end does not justify the means. Come on L.A. get tough and stop making excuses for their crap!

August 21, 2008 3:26 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

What a scam, anyone that falls for this is an idiot. The city''s back door undercover deals need to stop, they suck! Don't prasie them, they don't deserve it! The end does not justify the means. Come on L.A. get tough and stop making excuses for their crap!

August 21, 2008 3:27 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

I'm a Mt. Washington resident and I like the idea of a satellite campus. It's near the metro, making it accessible, and having a higher ed facility in the area has many positives.

I am not involved in any of the current Southwest Museum controversies.

August 21, 2008 3:55 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Great! Now they can go head with the CASINO!

you think that dice on the floor of the metro train stop, was put there by mistake...

Think again..........

August 21, 2008 5:03 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Well, I think they are lucky to have Mrs. Autry writing the check every year. Don't look a gift horse in the mouth.

If I had millions, I may very well want the board of my museum dancing for me also.

You think she should just let the City of Los Angeles take over her name and possessions?

August 21, 2008 5:09 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

What can neighborhood councils do?

Coincidentally, I just had an older board member (who has no computer) call me and ask me to type a motion for their next board meeting for the board to approve which states that the NC "wholeheartedly support the application of the Griffith J. Griffith Charitable Trust to have Griffith Park designated as a cultural monument".

She's a great board member but she gets confused easily, so is this what NC's can do? Or did the other side get to her because I'm not in the mood to research it.

August 21, 2008 5:17 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

It is absolutely incredible that Mona Field, who represents Mount Washington/Highland Park on the LACCD Board, would have so little respect for her constituents that she quietly pursued an arrangement to give taxpayer money to benefit Autry with no public input process.

I for one am not about to vote to spend tax money on the Southwest Museum buildings when Autry was prancing around town all this time saying it had the money to do it all. Why should we pay for something Autry promised it would do?

This is just terribly wrong and I bet the rest of the LACCD board has no idea how controversial this will be.

August 21, 2008 5:37 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

A satellite campus at the Southwest Museum has noise and traffic issues for the adjoining neighborhood that the current museum use does not.

I suppose the Autry will claim that students will flock to the Southwest by Metro Rail while out the other side of its mouth is keeps telling City Hall that tourists will NOT flock to the Southwest by Metro Rail.

August 21, 2008 5:40 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Ummm people, the Northeast Satellite Campus is under construction right now: it is supposed to be the Van de Kamps Bakery site at San Fernando and Fletcher. Why the hell is LACCD thinking about another satellite within two miles?

August 21, 2008 5:42 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Some of these posts sound like a lot about nothing.

This place is LA's first museum.

No one is giving it away, it will always remain in Mt. Washington.

Education and a collection of historic cultural artifacts.

Doesn't that equal great things for our community, youth, families?

Some of you guys are idiots.

August 21, 2008 9:47 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

9:47 - yes, this website is a lot of hot air about nothing. That is what you get when a bunch of keyboard warriors are able to pound away (and stop pounding something else for a change, if you know what I mean).

August 21, 2008 10:07 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


Education and a collection of historic cultural artifacts?

Umm... did you not get the memo that ALL of the SWM's collection is now at the Autry and is NEVER coming back? The Southwest is NEVER going to be a museum again.

Perhaps you should edit yourself before you start calling others idiots.

August 21, 2008 11:52 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Most of the Southwest's collection remains at the Southwest Museum. It has not been moved to the Autry because there is no room for it over there. Only if Autry gets approval to become 4 times the size of the EXPANDED Griffith Observatory will Autry be able to move the Southwest's collection away from its existing home.

If you do not want the commericialization of Griffith Park then you better start calling Tom LaBonge and telling him what idiocy the Autry's plan is. He's ready to be Jackie Autry's little lapdog. Bow wow, Tom.

August 22, 2008 2:43 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Why do you insist on spewing half truths? Yes, the collection is currently at the Autry, but NO ONE rational thinks the collection is never coming back and the only people "disgusted" by any of this are seven people who have failed to listen to anything that's happened in the past year and who don't take the time to realize that what is taking place is, for the most part, exactly what was being asked for from the very beginning.

The paranoia and vitriolic attacks on people who are delivering on their promises here are pretty disturbing.

The Southwest is undergoing renovation so it can REOPEN as a museum. The artifacts can NOT be stored there until that's done.

When the museum is refurbished, then the artifacts will come back. If you would LISTEN you would know the artifacts will be exhibited on a rotating basis at the Southwest Museum. So no matter when you go to the museum, you'll see something you probably didn't see last time and probably have never seen before considering most of the stuff was in storage for decades and never exhibiuted anyway.

Everyone wants to cry about the artifacts, but the truth is until the Autry took it over all of the precious artifacts everyone cares SOOOOOOOO much about now were "stored" as though the museum was some packrats basement with stuff crammed into every crevice with no care whatsoever! Is that the way we should let them be maintained for the future? Then they will surely be lost forever.

And if you READ rather than jump to conclusions, you will learn the community college plan is not for a satellite CAMPUS, but is for education and research based at the museum ABOUT the Southwest and its artifacts and history. A lot of museums have this kind of cooperation -- after all great museums are a rather academic endeavor.

Get over it - you're getting what you want, but because the victory has someone else's name on it and didn't have to be won with screaming and fighting and lots of attorneys fees being paid to the pockets of the main whiners about this issue, you just can't take it and are trying to make the situation into something it definitely is not. Viva Southwest!

August 23, 2008 11:16 AM  

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