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Tuesday, August 3, 2021

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UncategorizedA wake-up call for Oakland mayor

A wake-up call for Oakland mayor

Activists protest outside her windows early in the morning to send a message about the city’ s priorities

Protesters outside the home of the new Oakland mayor
Protesters outside the home of the new Oakland mayor

By Julia Carrie Wong

JANUARY 19, 2015 — A group of about 40 Black activists from the #BlackLivesMatter movement attempted to give Oakland’s new mayor Libby Schaaf a wake-up call at her home in the city’s Upper Diamond neighborhood starting at 5:00 AM this morning. The protesters erected seven-foot tall signs spelling “DREAM” in LED lights in front of the mayor’s house, and chalked body outlines on the street. They also projected quotations by Martin Luther King Jr onto Schaaf’s garage door, set up altars along the street, and illuminated a banner reading, “If we can’t breathe, you can’t dream.”

Over the course of about two and a half hours, they chanted, sang songs, and played selections from sermons and speeches by Martin Luther King Jr. They also read a list of demands that included dismantling the Oakland Unified School District Police Department, a “complete overhaul” of the California Police Bill of Rights, firing police officers with a record of using excessive force, and putting more funding toward school libraries and art programs.

The protest was part of four days of demonstrations against racism, police violence, and economic violence that have taken place across the Bay Area to mark Martin Luther King Day. 

Dawn breaks in Oakland as activist march from Libby Schaaf's home
Dawn breaks in Oakland as activist march from Libby Schaaf’s home

The activists said they were angered by the mayor’s decision to spend her first day in office with the Oakland police force. “You chose to prioritize blue,” protesters chanted in a “mic-check” style speech, “but today you will hear Black.”

“If Libby Schaaf wants to be mayor of Oakland, she needs to represent all the people of Oakland, and not just District 4” said protester Xan West, 35. “She represents the police and developers.”

West said that she has been harassed by police in West Oakland, where she was born and raised, and is struggling to stay in the city due to rising costs caused by gentrification.

Soon after the demonstration began, several Oakland police officers arrived at the scene, but they did not take any enforcement action.

There was no sign of life inside Schaaf’s home for two hours, and as the sun came up at 7:00 AM, the protesters were beginning to prepare to leave when they spotted a man in an upstairs window. Two protesters later knocked on the door and delivered a leaflet to a man who identified himself as Schaaf’s husband Sal. He thanked the activists and asked them to “take pity on our neighbors.”

It’s unclear whether or not the mayor herself was at home.

Tim Redmond
Tim Redmond has been a political and investigative reporter in San Francisco for more than 30 years. He spent much of that time as executive editor of the Bay Guardian. He is the founder of 48hills.
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68 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks, Mark, and in fact I did not gloat about the end of SFBG but rather sought to explain to those mourning why and how that happened.

    These imping attacks which prompted Tim to contemplate introducing controls here are really a pathetic tactic, although sadly we’ve seen a few of those recently out there in the real world as well.

    Is there something about the progressive psyche that simply cannot tolerate criticism? And are some of their zealots and acolytes totally devoid of a sense of humor?

    For the record I like Tim, I like this site, and I wish it nothing but success and prosperity.

  2. I stand by what I said. Your characterization of what I said is inaccurate. Fortunately that’s plain to see because it’s still up there. If you want to respond to something I actually said, please do.

  3. @PeaceD…yes, Sam has an opinion…lots of them, however I have not read anything by him that spews malice, hatred and name calling like his responders seem to post. just sayin, this is a place for opinions, not hate

  4. I hope you’re wrong and this isn’t the “beginning of the end of 48 Hills,” but if anyone is triggering it, wouldn’t a big share of the blame fall on Sam himself?

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think I’ve seen Sam express on here a certain amount of schadenfreude at the death of the SFBGuardian, so it would seem that he would celebrate the end of 48Hills as well, no? I suspect the “end of 48 Hills” may well have been Sam’s goal all along.

    Very glad to see Tim is instigating a new comments policy. Personally, I would have no problem with Tim banning the likes of “Sam,” and/or deleting all or most of their comments. As has been stated many times here and elsewhere, if you need to be heard on every issue and dominate every discussion, start your own blog. And it sure seems to me like Sam wants to dominate every discussion on 48 Hills.

  5. the above comment “my name is Sam and Im an addict” is a perfect example of the beginning of the end for 48 Hills. I remember when liberals were smart instead of this new group of nasty malcontents. I miss my old city of SF, we used to have purpose

  6. It is “racist” for white protesters to ONLY protest the deaths of blacks by the hand of police. If black lives truly mattered to them, they would also be trying to effect change in the black community by showing that ALL black lives matter. Truth is, the white folks in the protests are afraid of black neighborhoods (racist) and blacks in those neighborhoods have a different agenda by attending the “black lives matter” protests. There is need for change on both sides of the fence. The term “racist” is not just a word for liberals to throw around, but a call for understanding and a call for all good people to stand and effect change.

  7. My Name is Sam and I am an Addict

    I claim, and even manage to convince myself on occassion, that I am here day after day, commenting on almost every single article, no matter the topic, in at least a vaguely noble effort to discuss with intellectual honesty the great issues and problems that face our city, to help reach the truth, and find real solutions.

    But of course, in reality, I am here for no such reason. I don’t care that I fool no one. I actually give no thought to anyone’s well being but my own. For you see, I am incapable of empathy.

    Even I recognize that my behavior is textbook sociopathic. How could I not? It’s patently obvious. I mean, who does this? Who obsesses over commenting in an eternally cold, snide, mean-spirited tone on a website that one is mentally-wired to disagree with, always, without exception? Seriously, why do I even read this site, let alone instigate arguments here compulsively day after day after day?

    But what I do here on this site, each day, over and over and over again, is an addiction.
    I take a small, though ultimately never-satisfying perverse pleasure in the antisocial behavior that I engage in here, day after day, month after month. I recognize this behavior is unkind, unhelpful, and self-destructive. I would be humiliated if my acquaintances and family actually knew how I spent so many hours of my time. But it is a compulsion over which I have lost all control.

    My name is Sam and I am an addict. I am a sociopathic internet troll. Please forgive me for I simply can not stop.

  8. @ “Y” and “Greg”. So, black lives ONLY matter when the police kill them, not when it’s a black on black ghetto crime is what you are saying? With logic like that it’s clear the “liberals” are simply using minority issues to fit their personal needs. Sad. Please look at the whole picture and NOT just what you need to fuel your contempt for “the system” Either rally for ALL black lives or get a new slogan. Perhaps, the (white) protesters are too afraid to go into East Oakland? (racists) and the blacks who live there dont really care about anything but inciting mayhem at these “protests?

  9. Consideration of what those guys did or had done in the past to warrant adverse scrutiny seems appropriate if we are considering whether the police response was proportionate and appropriate.

    None of them were choirboys. And in only one of those cases were charges against the cop deemed necessary (not a decision that the cops make).

    I just wish you demonstrated the same outrage for all the black-on-black violent crime that happens in the ghettos.

  10. Smearing the characters of victims of state violence… ugly, just plain ugly. Of course none of them are alive to tell their side.

  11. All this is only an annoyance. Oakland is on the way to being SFII and tech is coming in big time. Susie Cagle said that Google bought a place there already.

  12. READ ” The New Jim Crow” by Michelle Alexander. You will get some answers on the legal/ illegal side , and fix those racist/criminals statements You say so freely.

  13. Cops are specifically authorized to kill people by we the people. Sure, that is a huge responsibility. But can you point to any police shooting recently that was not justified?

    Brown – assaulted a cop and tried to seize his weapon

    Nieto – guy with a history of mental illness and with RO’s against him drew and pointed a laser-targeted weapon on a cop

    Grant – 12-time felon causing disturbances on a train and resisting arrest.

    See the pattern here? They weren’t shot for being non-white. They were doing bad things. and if a thousand people (of any race) do bad things, chances are some of them will end up being neutralized by the cops.

    Prevent cops from using deadly force and the criminals win. They will have nothing to lose.

    Why do you never criticize the massive crime rate by some sections of the non-white community?

  14. “The difference is that criminals aren’t paid by the taxpayer, and that if they are caught they go to jail, rather than being ‘transferred to a desk job’ or such.”

    Yes, but it goes much deeper than that. The fact that cops are entrusted to enforce the law, and the only ones entrusted to use deadly force to protect us from others. When you are the victim of a crime, you call the cops. But who do you call when the cop is the criminal?

    When cops are the ones killing people, it’s worse than ordinary street crime. It undermines all trust in the rule of law. When cops abuse the sacred trust to use deadly force, it’s corrosive to the very fabric of society.

  15. But isn’t his point that it is only criminals who attract the adverse attention of cops.

    Cops do not shoot blacks; they shoot criminals. The problem is that blacks disproportionately commit crimes and so disproportionately find themselves suffering from any deviation from impeccable police behavior.

    Fix the crimes and you fix the police responses. And these protesters could influence their community to commit less crimes.

  16. The difference is that criminals aren’t paid by the taxpayer, and that if they are caught they go to jail, rather than being ‘transferred to a desk job’ or such.

  17. Agree, they need to look at the failings of their own community first.

    Fix the crime problem and the rest goes away. We’re post-racial now, but not post-criminal.

  18. If the “Black Lives Matter” folks were serious in that fact, we should see them on every east Oakland street when a black on black murder has happened
    I dont understand why a black life only matters when a policeman ends one.

  19. Just had a daydream that a similar protest happened outside of Ed Lee’s home in SF regarding the upcoming implosion of Candlestick Park. — Aesthetically impressive seven foot LED-lit letters for DREAM sign. — Seems like this event was creative and well organized.

  20. And how can Libby fix this alleged problem if she does not talk to OPD?It’s her job to do that. Are they complaining about Libby doing her job?

    Libby won the election by running on a platform of reducing crime. How does she do that without talking to OPD.

    And this is stalking. Not cool.

    Black crimes matter.

Comments are closed.

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