The NWA Movie Opens Today. There’s Heightened Security. Why Some People Think That’s a Problem.

The long-awaited (and well-reviewed) NWA bio-pic, Straight Outta Compton, opens today and Los Angeles is on edge. According to showbiz site The Wrap, “Deputies will be doing patrol checks during their shifts and the Department will be monitoring the release.”   Here’s more:

The Los Angeles Police Department plans to dispatch additional officers to theaters in its Southwest Division, which includes Baldwin Hills, Baldwin Village, Crenshaw, Exposition Park, Jefferson Park, Leimert Park and West Adams, a department insider said.

“There will be extra patrols around the theaters, cars and foot patrol. But not only because of the movie that’s coming out, but in light of all the recent activity in the country,” the LAPD insider explained.

Good point.  Movie theatres have been soft targets for whackos over the past couple of years: Lafayette, Louisiana; Antioch, Tennessee; James Holmes was just sentenced to life for the Aurora, Colorado shooting. Still, interesting tactics given that one of NWA’s biggest songs is this one.

This has set up a classic no-win situation for the police, theatre owners, Universal Studios and anyone who wants to see the movie. Some people are calling these police moves racist, a form of profiling and a provocation against the black community.  Others say “Hey, if something happens and no one was there to prevent it, it’s THEIR fault!” And given ‘Murica’s love of the Second Amendment, you know that there will inevitably be people packing heat in those theatres–not just in LA but across the country.

I haven’t heard of any other security measures being taken outside of Los Angeles. Anyone?

Please, please let nothing happen. From all accounts, this is a good movie. Can everyone just enjoy it without worrying about getting shot?

On a lighter note, let’s go back to CB4, a Chris Rock film that mocked the whole gangsta rap thing.




Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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