Dear Citizens Of Secular City:
Like a jeweled empress enthroned on majestic hills between mighty ocean and sparkling bay, San Francisco has long reigned as the Queen of Culture in the West. A closer look at her during a recent visit to old stamping grounds there revealed, however, that she is fast losing her regal qualities and beginning to resemble a bawdy madame. As a boisterous hostess for hippies, chippies, and spooks, she now provides a haven for more weirdos than the magic kookdom of Los Angeles ever entertained.
Naturally I visited Haight-Ashbury hiptown. Wading through six congested city blocks of long straggly hair, outlandish but fashionably filthy togs, colorful free-flowing posters, and shop after tourist shop stocked with incense from India and huaraches from Mexico, I realized that the forlorn hippies had something to tell us. As I decoded it, their message was that the way to uninhibited joy can be found through a life of uninvolved non-conformity, spent in squalor, subjected to the hazards of dangerous drugs, bolstered by a philosophy of love leading each night to a different bed partner, and devoted to the unfettered pursuit of True Art. The grim daily existence of the Flower Children showed, however, that their way of life was no bed of petunias.
While the hippies overran Hashbury, the chippies blanketed the Tenderloin district. In three blocks no less than twenty trollops pathetically peddled their wares with no apparent interference from cruising patrolmen. The attention of passersby was diverted from the scarlet lassies’ beguiling propositional attempts only when bewigged, tight-skirted gay boys swished past. One of the girls cordially received your writer’s Christian witness but afterward continued her ...1
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