Isla Vista Riots: Fighting for the Right to Party?

    April 6, 2014
    Aleyia Dixon
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The Beastie Boys might not have had this in mind as Spring Break suddenly got Really Real for the thousands of people attending the Deltopia street party event Saturday.

A local Fox news station reports that it all started when sheriff deputies came to the scene to respond to two stabbings. Two people ended up being taking to the hospital with unknown injuries.

At 9:30 p.m., a University of California-Santa Barbara police officer was hit in the head with a backpack stuffed with liquor bottles. The two police that arrived for help were also injured. Another officer was hit in the head with a brick. At this point, it was officially a riot– bottles, bricks and anything that could be thrown were being hurtled everywhere and at everyone– including police officers, paramedics and firefighters– street signs were being torn down, random things in the street were being set on fire and tear gas, pepper spray, flash bang grenades and rubber bullets flew everywhere. By the end of it, 26 people were ambulanced to the hospital for injuries and 18 people were arrested.

These days, the Deltopia just seems to be a uproarious event in general, like most drunken Spring Break events. Before the riot occurred, out of the 15,000 or so people that attended the all-day event, 56 people were already arrested and 30 already visited the hospital for various injuries (including of course, alcohol poisoning). Although the melee’ was embarrassing and unnecessary to the college town, we are thankful that there will likely be more life-long regrets that happened there from three too many beers instead of any causalities.

Image via Wikimedia Commons

  • david

    I don’t party myself. But people intending to have a good time a few times a year at a festival-like occurrence, should have a right to do so. They came to have a good time, and the police came to arrest people, and meet their incarceration quotas. Being rambuncious, roudy, and yelling and screaming, playing music, isn’t riotous nor unruly. I would suggest holding a referendum, annexing I.V. into its own community, with its own council and its own pro-student security. Declaring itself separate from UCSB and Santa Barbara, and vote to approve the festivals it wants throughout the year. Police are instigating riots here, and toying with people who are drinking, whereby they can manipulate them and achieve their desired outcome: arrests, fines, citations, more people in their public housing project-their jails. I would have a group of festival organizers, send the state and federal government your expected crowd numbers, that you’ll clean up after the event and will have service staff there to help event-goers, then I would hire lawyers to put injunctions on police from interfering into your event. The police work for themselves, their families they feed, and their own community of pro-incarceration-system, paid government staff. I would post the event in multiple media and flyers distributed in the community, stating you’re having a festival, everyone is welcome, you’ll have staff there to serve the event’s patrons, you’ll clean up, and nobody invited is allowed to be abusive, or they’ll be asked to leave, because the event is about community, cohesiveness, fun, companionship, and peace (or chilling), or whatever else you call it. If people see this, then they see the government come in and act the way they act, then it will be a black and white situation showing the world that the true thugs are the cops, their administrators who don’t stop them, and anyone that supports them in their determined effort to nix and interfere with people wanting to just basically have a big bbq, that 15k people just happen to show up to. I would revive the floatopia event and seek an injunction there too, or they’ll just keep drying you up over time until stalin looks like a hero and rodney king is considered “aggressive” after he’s battoned in the head.