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Lording over the landscape like giant -- Insects sucking soul, blood, chocolate -- into multi-colored mushrooms -- Metastasizing citywide. -- Officers ordering vacant storefronts, -- lined up like soldiers, to make money, -- while brothers with cupped hands -- platoon on plastic crates at entrances to -- $4-a-cup coffee shops with belligerent baristas.
Rent control and just cause eviction protections are the only fair and humane ways to slow down greedy landlords and profiteering realtors and developers from gouging renters with never ending rent increases and unjust evictions, displacing renters from their communities and adding to the already dire affordable housing crisis in California. During late April of 2018, the campaign to repeal Costa-Hawkins submitted over 565,000 signatures to place the Affordable Housing Act on the November 2018 ballot, which, if passed, would repeal the draconian Costa-Hawkins Act.
For years, tenants in cities throughout California have charged that the California Apartment Association’s signature gatherers used fraud, lies and deceit to collect signatures for petitions meant to defeat efforts to protect renters from greedy landlords. Reportedly, a Utah couple is expected to appear soon in the San Mateo County Superior Court for arraignment on charges of election fraud for faking signatures for a petition meant to block renter protections from taking effect in Pacifica during 2017.
On Oct. 13, 2017, San Francisco Bay View posted my essay “Hipsters de-Blacken Oakland, cause the encampments they abhor.” In the essay, I argued that Oakland leaders helped displace mainly native African American Oaklanders in order to make room for the hipsters and gentrifiers. Thus, the hipsters and gentrifiers have a duty to help solve the homeless crisis. However, several commenters to my essay showed ignorance or denial in defending their “innocence.”
The Coalition to Restore Public Trust and the Contra Costa Coalition for Racial Justice call for the immediate resignation of District Attorney Mark Peterson. Elected in 2010, DA Peterson has violated the public trust. According to charges pending before the California Fair Political Practices Commission, over a five-year period, DA Peterson used more than $66,000 of campaign contribution money for his personal expenses.
Renter protections will be on the November ballot in six cities in the Bay Area. No matter how hard the landlords and the California Apartment Association try to stop the renters movement, tenant advocates across the Bay Area are urging renters to vote on strong renter protections in Richmond, Oakland, Alameda, Burlingame, San Mateo and Mountain View. They urge people to vote “no” against any weak proposals placed on the ballot by the city councils in Alameda and Mountain View.
The new “Black Woman Is God” exhibit, curated by Karen Seneferu and Melorra Green, features the work of over 50 Black women artists in a variety of genres: film, mixed media installation, sculpture, paintings, photography – in a range of sizes covering entire walls to intimate corners. We travel below ground into spaces where lives are born and secret formulas are calculated … brews stirred.
On June 12, family members held a memorial for Derrick Gaines, a 15-year-old who was shot and killed by an officer with the South San Francisco Police Department on the evening of June 5. Police claim that Gaines, who was walking with a friend near an Arco gas station, was engaging in “suspicious behavior.”