General Question

Emilyy's avatar

Why does everyone hate LA so much?

Asked by Emilyy (2133points) March 24th, 2008

I’m being serious. I’m not looking for answers along the lines of, “Becuz it SUX!”

Yesterday, I was in the airport and told someone I was going home to LA and he said, “Oh. I’m sorry.” What’s the beef? I used to be sort of a hater myself, but now I’ve grown to love it for what it is. Maybe it’s lacking in some ways compared to SF or NYC, but why can’t we just appreciate it for what it is? Or is it just trendy to hate LA? Thoughts? I’m interested in opinions from both inside and outside LA.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

27 Answers

TennesseeTeacake's avatar

well LA is really smoggy. SF has the bay breeze to keep smog from collecting over it. but i dont hate LA. id live there. id like to live in SF more, but ive got nothing against LA.

squirbel's avatar

I can’t say I’m a hater, but I don’t envy those who live there. It’s too big, too busy, too dry, and lacking the fresh air I love. But that’s me, so a person who loves city life has a more valuable opinion for your cause~

sfgirl's avatar

I don’t hate LA, but the traffic is awful, the smog can be really bad and there are a lot of pretentious, fake people who live there. That being said, there are some lovely areas of LA and I have a lot of good friends down there.

People will always find something to hate about a specific place…I just prefer to say it’s not my cup of tea!

glial's avatar

I hear that Randy Newman loves it.

andrew's avatar

@sfgirl: Yeah, because last time I went to Zeitgeist I was amazed at how unpretentious all the girls were with their artfully bad haircuts and the how unfake the guys were with their designer jeans. ;)

As a transplant from SF to LA, you meet the same people walking around Sunset Junction as you do in the Mission. It’s always been trendy for NorCal to hate on SoCal. It’s a social shorthand. Just like whenever you meet someone from NYC in LA you talk about traffic and weather.

Realistically, though, LA has some wonderful things to offer—as much as, I dare say, SF. When people from the Bay think of LA, they get caught up on the mental image of an entire metropolis filled with transplants from the Marina. In reality, though, LA’s culture is much more “diverse” than the city contained within 7×7 square miles.

Yes, I miss a geography that makes public transit always desirable; yes, I miss the chilly bay area summers; yes, I miss being meeting with any of my friends in less than 20 minutes; but once I stopped being precious about SF, I’ve appreciated LA much more.

jrpowell's avatar

I grew up in Redlands, Colton, and Fontana. East valley.

It was the most miserable thing I have ever experienced. In JR High people would steal my shoes and skateboard. It takes two hands to count the number of times I have been chased by someone holding a gun. I never looked at anyone because I would get “What the fuck are you looking at?” and then they would hit me.

Moving to Oregon was the best thing I ever did. Hippies give me random hugs but they don’t steal my shoes.

Emilyy's avatar


I love your response. Love, love, love it! I want to click “great answer” 900 times! My sister has lived in the Mission for close to eight years, and she was there long before it was the painfully trendy hipster central that it has now become. They used to be locals at Zeitgeist but now they hardly can even get a seat in there because of all the tools and posers.

I think you also hit on something that I’m trying to get at, which is that you have to like LA for what it is. You can’t come here expecting the weather to be as gorgeous as the Northwest, and you can’t expect to get around as quickly as you can on BART. But I think, like you said, it’s VERY easy and convenient for NorCal to turn up its nose at LA and act like they don’t have a lot of the same pretentious people that we have.

Andrew, you just made my day.

And @Johnpowell: My car was broken into in the Mission in SF in front of a church on a sunny, happy Sunday. I also have had my car broken into a couple times in LA. So while your argument doesn’t do much for the NorCal/SoCal debate, I definitely look forward to the day when I might move out of here and head back to Washington or someplace similar where crime might not be as bad. But unfortunately I guess crime does happen everywhere, even in the Northwest. Sigh.

xgunther's avatar

I love LA. Its just really really crowded and traffic-y.

Response moderated
Riser's avatar

I may not publicly sound too fond of Los Angeles but in truth I have a mad love affair with this county. I emphasize that word because, it seems, most of the Los Angeles hatred I’ve heard spewed over the years have come from two perspectives; the tourist and the failed artist. Both of which experience a very small section of Los Angeles compared to its established residents.

Yes there’s traffic, smog and crime but these are only sections of a beautiful and unique county that has so much more to offer than photographs of a famous movie theatre.

If you remove yourself from the tourists hot-spots, traveling only twenty minutes out of your way you will find a wonderful little college community that surrounds the UCLA campus, Westwood. Westwood offers its visitor a tranquil atmosphere, intelligent conversation and made-from-scratch cookie sandwiches for $1.50 (my personal favorite is vanilla ice cream with their cinnamon)

If you travel twenty minutes the other direction you will be greeted by an eclectic artist community comprised of painters, filmmakers, poets and leather daddies. This community considers itself free from the confines of the business-like structure of Hollywood entertainment and will gladly share their opinions on things that have cultural significance, they are almost like the Fluther community except, perhaps, less acid is involved. :)

You will find no tourists in Westwood or Silverlake. Very few cameras will show up near Skid Row on 4th and Main where Pete’s steak house is waiting for their locals to dine on the kind of pleasure that only a perfect filet mingon and gin gimlet can offer.

Still there is traffic, crime and pollution but this buried treasure that I call home is worth it.

The Decemberists said it best:

There is a city by the sea
a gentle company
I don’t suppose you want to
And as it tells its sorry tale
In harrowing detail
Its hollowness will haunt you
Its streets and boulevards
Orphans and oligarchs it hears
A plaintive melody
Truncated symphony
An ocean’s garbled vomit on the shore,
Los Angeles, I’m yours

Please excuse any mistakes that are made above. I am typing on the iPhone and it is very difficult to edit.

Response moderated
Response moderated
Response moderated
Response moderated
Response moderated
DeezerQueue's avatar

I’m not convinced that people actually hate LA as much as they hate the image of LA. Many of the news stories are of people who have too much money or time on their hands, appear pretentious, shallow or hollow.

I lived in Orange County not far from LA and the reality of course is entirely different. It’s simply another place to live and that’s what most people are doing, just living their lives.

cake7's avatar

I was born in LA. I absolutly love it! I visit every so often. If you lived where I grew up you would fall in love with LA in a heartbeat. My parents believed that living in a small town (4000)would keep us from trouble. When living in a small town you learn to love bigger cities, their imperfections and all.

Response moderated
sfgirl's avatar

@andrew – You make a good point but I never said SF was clearly free of pretension…you’ll find it every place. While I love areas of The Mission I can see what you’re saying about the “hipsters” that hang there – and I’m definitely not one of them. But if it’s a choice of hanging with them and the vapid, plastic filled tossers of LA, hipsters win hands down. ;-)

Point is there are positives and negatives of every area…I’ve also lived in LA as well and I prefer SF. But that doesn’t mean that there aren’t things about LA that I miss and I will always love it for what it was for me…I try not to judge based on stereotypes – but the question was “why do people hate on LA” – and I think I answered the question.

DeezerQueue's avatar

That must have been one heck of an exchange.

AlexChoi's avatar

@DeezerQueue… I totally agree with your sentiment

when NorCal people think of LA they think of Hollwood glitz glamor and superifciality. It also represents a lack of public transportation (which basically makes it very difficult for poorer people to get around).

jballou's avatar

People hate LA for the same reason they hate NYC- they just don’t get it. LA wouldn’t be the second largest city in the US, and one of the largest cities in the world, if there was nothing good or attractive about it. Generally speaking, people’s opinions of LA (or NYC, or any place they haven’t ever been too) are based off of stereotypes and the the opinions of the people they know who HAVE been. Sometimes, those opinions are good, but a LOT of times they are bad.

When I lived in Philly I got hated on endlessly just because I’m a native New Yorker (A random stranger once knocked the Yankees hate right off my head!) – and now living in San Francisco, the “rivalry” between SF and LA is very similar. In some cases it’s good natured, but in a lot of cases, it’s based off ignorance.

tabbycat's avatar

I’ve lived in L.A. most of my life, and I love it. There are great art museums, libraries, and musical programs here. Even a bunch of great theatre. And the beaches and mountains are wonderful. The trouble with L.A. is that it’s so spread out and there is less than there should be in the area of public transportation. And, of course, traffic is terrible.

I think many people don’t realize all the great things there are to do in L.A. because it’s a chore to get to them.

By the way, I’m quite fond of New York, San Francisco, and Chicago, too. I guess I’m just a city girl at heart.

TaoSan's avatar

Used to live in LA, then in SF. Solution? I moved to Vegas, LOL.

Fun aside, I think it’s just “hip” to hate L.A. The one thing I really hated was (as in the rest of Cali.)....LAST CALL.

Around here, I hardly ever get out of the house before 10pm, in L.A. add traffic and that would mean less than 3 hours to drink and socialize. Millions of people and everything shuts down at 1:30am, unbelievable. One would think some interest group would push to keep stuff open longer….but nope.

Other than that, I really notice a lot of my friends in casual conversation blurting out they hated L.A., but when you nail them and ask them what it is they hate they usually start to stammer. I’m sure L.A. has a lot to offer, problem is, with this insane traffic you can’t get anywhere, and that is certainly hate-able.

laxrrockr18's avatar

Its over rated and too many famous people with thier egos, and GANGS!!!!!

Peacelovehappiness's avatar

Hate to say it guys….L.A. is absolutely gross!! The smog is unbearable (and especially with all the smoke from the fires recently), people are pretentious, overcrowded, freeways are horrendous! ‘Nuf said! There’s no culture here – people don’t connect and would rather not be bothered and left alone. It’s a great place to live if you want to be alone and never meet anyone…I’ve pretty much had it and will be moving away in the near future. It’s very easy to be swept into the pretentious, fake, materialistic facade of this city. For example, a friend of mine just decided to buy a jaguar as a treat to himself. He’s been riding it to work everyday (and he works in a very poor area) and said, “isn’t it great how it makes you feel when you’re in this car?” I said, “no…I feel like I’m in a car and it doesn’t matter to me what other people think”. The point is, here it does matter and that’s the mentality I’m absolutey sick of. SORRY!! That’s the truth! AND the fact that the smog will literally kill you after living there for a number of years….you guys never think about that! It’s always moderate-unhealthful air quality for most of the SoCal area! BLEH, BLEH!!

ItsAHabit's avatar

L.A. is a great place. It’s mostly arrogant people who dislike it.

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther