Craig Glazer spends the night with a 23 year-old girl he met last weekend who’s mom’s only 40 and suddenly he’s Ponce de Leon. I get a new Fiat and I think I’m Vin Diesel. Paul Wilson builds a huge front porch and landscapes in an above ground pool at his new home in Olathe home and like Harley’s never gonna bag on him anymore.
Some people think the only reason the Country Club Plaza is crawling with mischievous black teenagers when the weather is warm is because Cinemark’s Palace on the Plaza dropped its ticket prices to accommodate them.
They’re kidding themselves.
They’re also kidding themselves to think that black teens will stay out of Westport if Kansas City can lure them to neighborhood weekend dances during the summer months.
Fact is, Kansas city has changed, the world has changed.
And kids from the poor side of town wanna hang at upscale shopping centers just as much as white kids in the suburbs do.
It’s safer, funner and it gives them a chance for a little “in your face” with the upscale, mostly white shoppers and Plaza people they know don’t want them there.
All the more reason to go.
Where else are they gonna go, The Landing?
A handful of years ago the Plaza ran off its upscale McDonald’s because it was an African American youth magnet.
Didn’t work, did it?
Kids are going to be kids and bad kids are going to be bad kids.
We had bad kids when I was a youth at Bryant and Pembroke.
It’s just that not that many parent age people were scared of them because they were white, hispanic or Asian. They felt safer around them.
The average Plaza tenant has been conditioned by society (including television and movies) to expect the worst in black kids – pretty much all black kids.
So when four or six of them do something dumb like flop around on people’s car hoods it reinforces that stereotype.
Johnson County and North of the River on the Missouri side are chock full of fun, upscale options that no longer require visits to the Plaza. More options than the Plaza has to offer in many cases.
So people in the burbs don’t go as often, or at all. Especially after news reports like the ones from this past weekend about black teens on the Plaza.
Look, the Plaza can line its streets with rental cops, off duty KC police, horses – you name it – and weather permitting, the kids are still gonna come. Even if they run off Cinemark.