There are a lot of things that made Diamond Jim’s Saloon such a special place and gave it such importance in my life.
They were the infamous karaoke nights, that finally got me out of my shell, but only after I learned how to sing. They were the vinyl record player nights, where they gave away great vinyl records and which was the impetus for me to start my own vinyl collection. There were the drinks, especially the ones that incorporated tea. Before I started going to the saloon, I never even knew that you could make alcoholic drinks with tea. But perhaps the most important factor in making diamond Jim such a success was the security.
By that I of course mean the security guards, to whom we all owe a big thank you. But I also mean the security system. Diamond Jim’s had a state-of-the-art system complete with surveillance cameras, to ensure that every event and every night there went off without any problems.
And of course they needed this kind of security. Not because of the people who went to the club regularly. There were never any issues with them. It was the people who hated what we were in what we stood for.
There was always the threat of them coming in and starting trouble. There were times when it happened. And that is where the surveillance cameras really helped out. Yes, they generally acted as a deterrent to those kind of people away anyways. But when they did come in, the surveillance cameras recorded everything and could be used as evidence for the police.
This was important because many police might not be inclined to press any charges against people committing violent crimes against us or against the saloon. But in the face of video evidence, they had no choice. They had to prosecute the offenders, despite their personal feelings about us.
And that is why the security system at Diamond Jim’s was so important. Even more important, were the actual security guards. They are the ones who actually dealt with these troublemakers firsthand.
Sometimes they got injured and often they got harassed verbally, but they took at all like the professionals they were. They were always there to protect the rest of us and ensure we could have a good time without being harassed or bothered.
For all that they did we owe them a huge thank you. Of course it was a job and they got paid, but there were plenty of other jobs that could have had. They choose to do this one, because it was important to them.
They knew what the saloon was to us and what it meant for so many people. They wanted to be a part of that and they want to make clear where they stand. They wanted to create the kind of society where people like me are free to do as I want. And for that I am very grateful. Not just I. Everyone who was a regular at the saloon is very grateful to them for that.
I know the owners of the saloon must have spent a lot of money on the security systems. Hiring all the guards they had cost a lot, and I imagine installing the cameras and hiring people to watch the cameras and work them must have cost even more.
Just purchasing a system like that would cost a lot of money. I have a few security cameras in my home, and those cost me several hundred dollars. These are very simple cameras too, nothing like the high-tech security surveillance equipment that was install the Diamond Jim’s.
So I guess I should think the owners too, but that is an obvious one. I’m thankful for them every day of my life for creating this space for me when I was younger. It shaped who I am today, and did the same for many other people as well. So again, thank you to you all.