48hillsgoogleprotest1

Actually, protests are good. And they work.

By Tim Redmond

FEB. 24, 2014 — I don’t have any bad feelings for SF Weekly these days. The era when the dickwad owners of that particular publication were trying to drive my paper out of business are over. We won the lawsuit, got the T-Shirt, and both the Weekly and the Guardian are now under new owners – the same new owners – and I don’t work for them anymore. I wish the best to anyone trying to survive publishing a newspaper these days, and the Weekly does some great work; Joe Eskanazi is one of the best reporters in the city.

So as they say in The Godfather, this isn’t personal.

No: It’s just business. So with all due respect to the people I used to share office space with, the latest SF Weekly story by Rachel Swan made me want to vomit.

That’s the first time I read it. When I read it again, and again, and tried to make sense out of it, vomiting seemed like a fairly mild response.

Combine that with Chuck Nevius warning that if the activists “win,” tech will leave town and we’ll become like Detroit, and we’ve got some media outlets that have completely misunderstood what the protests in the city are about.

Swan and Nevius ought to try a little harder. It’s not that hard to understand, when you stop to think about it. The people who, in various ways, from blocking Google buses to holding conventions and rallies, are fighting back against the tech-boom-fueled displacement are making a critical statement about this city, and every city.

They are saying that San Francisco is, first and foremost, a community, a place where people live and interact and fall in love and make friends and write poetry and have dinner parties and do all the things that social human beings do … and the completely artificial construct of a hyper-capitalist economy run amok shouldn’t be able to destroy that.