Gentrifiers bought my favorite scumbag bar and made it nicer, cleaner and newer – and it’s an absolute tragedy
I can’t help but think that this relentless urge to make ourselves better, richer, prettier, shinier is just a desperate attempt to hide our empty, rotten cores, and it’s the same with the Gold Star. The new owners’ good taste can’t hide their firing of the entire staff, most of whom had worked there for years, via a text message with only a few days’ notice. According to that former staff, the new owners fabricated accusations of theft to justify their decision.
What made the Gold Star good wasn’t that Nelson Algren drank there, it was that the kind of people Algren wrote about drank there. The misfits, outsiders, and losers, the sluts and dummies, those who sold bodies and stolen televisions to be there, the angry and sullen, those hiding bruises and track marks, those who dreamed the big American dream and woke up on cold concrete.
Source: To hell with gentrification's obsession with better, richer, prettier – give me grime | Jessa Crispin