Farm versus factory: an endless American debate


You might think all the stories left to tell in this genre are about quaint family farms in the mid-West being overrun by giant corporations, but the latest salvo comes from industrial Los Angeles.

Two years ago, a community garden was razed to make room for a warehouse for the clothing retailer Forever 21, and now community activists are looking at the still-empty tract of land and they want their plants back.

The Los Angeles Times says the story is complicated by political ties -- the company made hefty donations to the mayor, Antonio Villaraigosa, who had initially opposed the destruction of the garden, which is located in South Central. This being L.A., there are celebrities involved: Daryl Hannah, Joan Baez and Danny Glover are among those who protested the initial plans, and it was the subject of the short documentary South Central Farm: Oasis in a Concrete Desert.