Racial slurs. Anti-gay epithets. The N-word. The F-bomb.
Over the last three years, the language used by members of the public at Los Angeles City Council meetings has grown increasingly graphic, moving from the vulgar and the sexually explicit into the hateful and, some say, frightening.
But worries over those messages crossed a new threshold in recent days, after Los Angeles City Council President Herb Wesson received a public comment card featuring a racial epithet and a drawing of a burning cross. The card, submitted by Encino attorney Wayne Spindler, also featured a drawing of a figure resembling a Ku Klux Klansman and a man hanging from a tree.