$5.00 donated in past month
Before dawn on Saturday, March 21, a fire erupted in a warehouse on 24th Street in Oakland. Two resident artists died, Davis Letona and Daniel “Moe” Thomas. The fire quickly spread to the adjoining warehouse on 23rd Street commonly known as the AK Press warehouse. On the AK side, three residential units sustained severe damage, at least one being totally destroyed, with a beloved cat succumbing to the smoke and heat. As a result of the three-alarm fire, other units sustained varying degrees of water and smoke damage. Businesses on the first floor are struggling with major damage from tons of stinky smoke-smelling water that rained down.
AK Press lost a large number of books and other inventory. 1984 Printing lost reams of printing paper, computers, jobs in progress, and more. In all, between businesses and residents, damages easily run into the tens of thousands of dollars, probably exceeding well over $100,000. Things became worse, with a much greater number of people affected, when the warehouse on 23rd Street was red-tagged by the City of Oakland on March 23 and the AK warehouse was red-tagged on March 24, meaning no residents or businesses are allowed inside either building, even if their units were largely unaffected by the fire, leaving dozens homeless and AK and 1984 unable to operate.
There is a memorial fund for one of the victims on 23rd Street. Surviving residents and businesses on both sides greatly need assistance now, too. A new relief fund has been created that will be evenly split three ways between AK Press, 1984 Printing, and affected neighbors. Please, give whatever you can.
Help AK Press & Friends Recover from Fire |
Devastating Fire at AK Press Warehouse: Lives Lost, Residences Destroyed, Dozens Displaced, Businesses Damaged |
Davis Letona: Memorial Service |
Fire Relief for AK Press & Friends
In Oakland, hundreds of people from more than two dozen groupings organized in response to the Anti Police-Terror Project’s call to come together for ninety-six hours of direct action over the Martin Luther King Day weekend. The first action announced was a protest inside Montgomery BART station in San Francisco at 7am on Friday. The weekend’s events culminated in a Jobs and Economy March for the People on Monday, January 19. Other groups organized more MLK-related events in Oakland, Berkeley, Richmond, San Francisco, Santa Rosa, Palo Alto, Santa Cruz, and throughout Northern California.
Claudia Tirado, a third grade teacher and tenant being evicted by Google's head of eDiscovery, Jack Halprin, queered her fight to remain in her home at the Folsom Street Fair on September 21. With other activists from Eviction Free San Francisco, Tirado handed out condoms for "eviction protection" at the annual kink and sex-positive SoMa fair in front of the Powerhouse bar. Halprin is active in the Powerhouse and leather community, and was part of the Powerhouse contingent during the 2014 Pride Parade. Eviction Free SF reported that many fair attendees agreed that housing is a queer issue and that it is unconscionable for Halprin to evict residents so that he can have a private mansion just three blocks from the Google bus stop at 18th and Dolores.
Halprin bought the 7-unit 812 Guerrero in 2012, and then illegally Owner-Move-In evicted one tenant, Susan, only days after her sister passed away. She filed a lawsuit against him, and won. In retaliation, he then proceeded to issue Ellis Act eviction notices to the other tenants in four other units in the building, including the unit where Claudia and her three-year-old son Valentino reside. Eviction Free SF has been demanding that Google pressure Halprin to rescind the eviction, utilizing tactics from bus blockades to demonstrations in Mountain View.
Read More |
Eviction Free San Francisco
In Solidarity with People whose homes are threatened, In Honor of unpermitted public Art, In Defense of spaces free and wild everywhere, To Keep the Albany Bulb Natural and unlandscaped, To Preserve Habitat for Birds, Insects, and other migratory Animals, including Humans, We Declare the Bulb an Autonomous Zone , a space where Art and Music continue to flourish, where People assemble Freely, where Dogs run unleashed, and where long-term Residents can continue to maintain and improve their Homesteads.
On March 24, the California Department of Corrections (CDC), which practices culture jamming by "correcting" commercial advertisements, successfully apprehended, rehabilitated and discharged a billboard in San Francisco, located at Oakdale Avenue between Bay Shore Boulevard and U.S. Highway 101. With larger-than-life lettering the billboard reads, PAIN ISN'T ALWAYS OBVIOUS. LEARN THE SIGNS AT GUANTANAMO BAY. Next to its massive headline the ad includes logos for a California mental health agency and the tagline KNOW THE SIGNS.
The ad was released from custody two weeks after a landmark lawsuit, Hassan v. Obama, was brought before U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C. to end force-feeding at Guantanamo Bay. Filed on behalf of Emad Abdullah Hassan, the lawsuit is the first case against forced-feeding since the U.S. Court of Appeals ruled that federal courts can hear challenges by detainees to conditions of their confinement. Hassan is a Yemeni national who has been detained at Guantanamo Bay for twelve years despite being cleared for release in 2009. He has been on hunger strike since 2005 and has allegedly experienced over 5,000 forced-feedings, a practice that is violent, abusive and illegal, according to his lawsuit.
Although half of Guantanamo's inmate population has been cleared for release, 154 detainees are trapped in legal limbo at the U.S. naval base. Last year more than 100 Guantanamo detainees were on hunger strike demanding an end to their detention without trial. Currently, fewer than 40 people remain on hunger strike, 16 of whom are being forced-fed.
Read More |
Previous Related Indybay Features:
"Corrected" Billboard Calls Out Corporate Tax Loopholes |
Liberated Ads Confront San Francisco Eviction Crisis |
Hollywoood Movie Billboard in SF Spoofed to "Honor" U.S. National Security Agency |
SF Vigil in Solidarity with Guantanamo Hunger Strikers Culminates with Civil Disobedience |
Orange Jumpsuit Protest in Palo Alto Marks Opening of Guantánamo 11 Years Ago |
Bay Area Artists Modify Islam-Bashing Hate Speech Advertisements on SF MUNI Buses |
8th Year of Guantanamo Commemorated With Giant Posters in San Francisco |
National Day of Protest: Close Guantanamo and End Torture |
Bay Area Billboards "Study In Israel" Modified by Guerrilla Advertisers |
Satirical Ads in Berkeley Poke Fun at Pro-Israel PR Efforts
The new documentary "The Ghosts Of March 21" focuses on March 21, 2009, when a shoot-out between Lovelle Mixon and members of the Oakland Police Department resulted in the death of Mixon and four police officers. The documentary examines the encounter’s underlying contradictions and challenges the mainstream narrative of the confrontation. The film opened in Oakland and Berkeley on March 20 and 21, San Francisco on March 22, and Santa Rosa on March 23.
This month's Bike Party theme in Santa Cruz was pie and pajamas. A colorful group gathered for pie at the Bike Church and then rode off into the sunset together on March 14 for Pi Day (3.14). Unlike the world-famous critical-mass bicycle rides, which are more political in focus and sometimes confrontational, Bike Party aims for a festive and friendly ride. The Santa Cruz Bike Party is gaining popularity and part of a larger movement, with the San José Bike Party being the most famous.
There were quite a few onesies and some great patterned pajamas worn. During the ride, there were fun lights, the Happening Couch that plays music provided free rides to people along the way, and the group stopped off for dance parties. After heading toward the San Lorenzo River and then riding along Ocean, the Bike Party made its way to the Westside and stopped off for beers at Santa Cruz Mountain Brewery. The event was fun and a lot of people participated, which created a great opportunity to ride the streets with fellow bike-loving, pie-eating, pajama-wearing community members and friends!
Santa Cruz Bike Party happens every second Friday, usually around 7 pm.
Read More with Photos | See Also: Santa Cruz Bike Party Love Ride
| Pedal-Powered Revelry with Santa Cruz Bike Party
The California Department of Corrections (CDC), which practices culture jamming by "rehabilitating" commercial advertisements, unveiled a new billboard campaign which calls to attention American corporations that completely avoid paying federal income taxes. On March 7, the CDC modified a San Francisco billboard to ask, "HOW DO I FIND A TAX LOOPHOLE?" In matching typeface the bottom of the billboard reads, "NO INCOME TAX FOR BOEING, GE and VERIZON."
The billboard was "rehabilitated" one week after the nonpartisan Center for Tax Justice
published a report comparing the profits and income taxes for Fortune 500 companies. One hundred and eleven of the companies under investigation paid zero or less in federal income taxes for at least one year between 2008 and 2012. Twenty-six of these corporations, including Boeing, General Electric and Verizon, generated a combined total of $170 billion in profits, but maintained negative tax rates every year from 2008 to 2012.
Read More |
Previous Related Indybay Feature: Liberated Ads Confront San Francisco Eviction Crisis
On Tuesday, February 18, The Great Morgani announced he will no longer be performing in downtown Santa Cruz "due to the recent strict enforcement of current ordinances" passed by the Santa Cruz City Council.
Joe Rose, an illustrator and painter who regularly displays his artwork on Pacific Avenue, reports that on Sunday afternoon, he witnessed two Santa Cruz Police officers hassling The Great Morgani on Pacific Ave. Joe wrote, “there were 2 cops that stopped him playing when he had a crowd of about a dozen people watching.”
The Great Morgani, aka Frank Lima, is a longtime street performer and performance artist from Santa Cruz, recognized as one of city's most interesting characters. He plays the accordion and dresses in homemade, seasonally relevant costumes which sometimes take up to 100 hours of work to create.
He authored a book, The Great Morgani: The Creative Madness of a Middle-Aged Stock Broker Turned Street Musician
, which is described as a "photo-illustrated story of one of the United States' most flamboyant and unusual street musicians."
Read More and View Photos |
TheGreatMorgani.com | Tuesday, Feb. 25 at 5 pm: City Council Meeting
See Also: Love Gutter played on Pac. Ave. 6 years until a $450 ticket
|| A Civil Libertarian Looks at Street Performers and the First Amendment
|| Shafting Non-Shoppers: Expanding the Destructive Downtown Ordinances
Why is Pamela Comstock hating on Flea Markets?
The California Department of Corrections (CDC), which practices culture jamming by "altering California's most criminal advertising", has unveiled a new campaign of bus shelter ads to confront San Francisco’s eviction crisis. On February 11, 2014, the CDC successfully apprehended, rehabilitated and discharged bus shelter advertisements throughout San Francisco. The ads were released into city districts with historically high rates of tenant displacement, including the Fillmore, the Mission and South of Market. One corrected ad sits at Valencia and 24th Street in the Mission District, a neighborhood with the city’s leading eviction rate from 2009 to 2013.
The corrected ads were placed in response to San Francisco’s growing eviction crisis, which has been triggered by a high-tech economic boom and a surging real estate market. According to a 2013 report from the city’s Budget and Legislative Analyst, all types of evictions increased 38% over the past three years with a 170% spike in Ellis Act evictions over the same period. The Ellis Act refers to a California law that gives landlords unchecked power to evict their tenants, remove their properties from the rental market and sell their buildings without occupants.
Read More |
The National Lawyers Guild and Prison Radio will present two films on repression and resistance at 3pm on Saturday, October 19
at the The New Parkway Theater in Oakland:
The Battle for Oscar Grant Plaza
is a short documentary by Jacob Crawford about how the City of Oakland and its police tried to shut down the budding "Occupy Wall Street" movement, turning downtown Oakland into a teargas-filled war zone and injuring numerous people. Police video obtained in discovery in the National Lawyers Guild's successful lawsuit and interviews with activists and journalists about their experiences, tell the real story of the disastrous Fall 2011 police actions that pushed the troubled OPD to the brink of federal receivership. The film was co-produced by Dave Id of Indybay.org.
is a short film that appears as a Bonus Feature on the DVD Mumia: Long Distance Revolutionary
. The short takes on the colossus of Abu-Jamal's contentious case, distilling a mountain of evidence and years of oft-repeated falsehoods to the most fundamental elements of police and prosecutorial misconduct that illustrate a clear and conscious effort to frame Mumia Abu-Jamal for the murder of patrolman Daniel Faulkner.
Previous Related Indybay Features:
National Lawyers Guild Wins Settlement for Occupy Oakland Injuries in Campbell vs Oakland |
Indybay's Occupy Oakland Coverage
After the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History (MAH) altered its mission statement following the appointment of director Nina Simon two years ago, one critic says the institution has sacrificed the experience of art and history to become a "second community center." In a recent column, Bruce Bratton cites a report that details how museums across the country have been seeking to increase attendance numbers as proof to justify grants and larger sums of monies to subsidize programs.
In his September 18-24 column, Bratton argues the shift in the museum's mission statement has lead to new meanings for the institution, musing that the "H" in MAH may more accurately be equated with "happenings" or "hobbies" than history. He admits some complicity in the process, describing how the MAH exhibited his collection of toothpaste.
Bruce Bratton writes:
"MAH Board members have been quitting over this, and professional historians, curators and staff members have either left or are completely devastated by the changes that Nina Simon has created in the two and a half years she’s been executive director...Historians have told me many times in the last two and a half years that there are no longer any qualified historians cataloguing and curating and handling our MAH’s collections. Future generations will suffer from this. Concerned community members are wondering why the MAH Board of Directors have allowed this hobby-circus to take over MAH."
Read More | Bratton Online | See Also: PechaKucha Night: Found in Santa Cruz