Conservative political commentator and radio host Ben Shapiro announced in his latest column that he’s leaving California — and he’s bringing his family and his business with him.
“My family and my company are leaving California,” Shapiro, a longtime resident of the Golden State, wrote in a syndicated column published Wednesday. “It’s heartbreaking.”
A steady erosion
Writing Wednesday, Shapiro suggested that California ought to be a good place to live, considering its natural beauty, inviting weather, and “warm” people — not to mention that “there’s an enormous amount to do.”
“This is the most beautiful state in the country,” Shapiro wrote. “I grew up here. For 33 of the 36 years I’ve spent on this planet, I’ve lived here.”
But what he once loved about the Golden State, Shapiro says, has “steadily eroded.”
“We’re leaving because all the benefits of California have steadily eroded — and then suddenly collapsed,” he contended Wednesday. “Meanwhile, all the costs of California have steadily increased — and then suddenly skyrocketed.”
Shapiro went on:
When my family moved to North Hollywood, I was 11. We lived in a safe, clean suburb. Yes, Los Angeles had serious crime and homelessness problems, but those were problems relegated to pockets of the city — problems that, with good governance, we thought could eventually be healed.
Instead, the government allowed those problems to metastasize.
The radio host pointed to issues like homelessness and widespread drug use as primary factors in his decision. “The most beautiful areas of Los Angeles, from Santa Monica beach to my suburb, have become wrecks,” Shapiro wrote. “My children have personally witnessed drug use, public urination, and public nudity.”
“Thanks for the memories”
Of course, Shapiro isn’t the only one who’s made the decision to ditch the Golden State as conditions there are said to be worsening. In an article published just last month, the Daily Mail revealed that “[m]ore people are leaving California than arriving as the state reels from devastating wildfires that only worsen by the year, power outages, poor air quality, and a burgeoning cost of living.”
The Daily Mail reported that some 6 million Californians left the state “[b]etween 2007 and 2016,” and a poll taken by the University of California at Berkeley last year “found more than half of California voters have given ‘serious’ or ‘some’ consideration to leaving due to the high cost of housing, heavy taxation, or political culture.”
It’s a problem that Shapiro doesn’t see resolving itself anytime soon. “California is not on a trajectory toward recovery; it is on a trajectory toward oblivion. Taxpayers are moving out — now including my family and my company,” he wrote Wednesday. “And still, the state legislature is dominated by Democrats.”
I want my kids to grow up safe. I want them to grow up in a community with a future, with more freedom and safety than I grew up with. California makes that impossible. So, goodbye, Golden State. Thanks for the memories.