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Tue Jul 14 2020
Fuck the Fourth
July 4 is a U.S. holiday marking the country's independence from England, but anti-racism activists used the occasion to declare, "No one is free until we are all free.” Being that the holiday traditionally is a painful reminder of this country's history of colonization, genocide, and enslavement, alternate Independence Day events in Northern Californian cities from Oakland to San Francisco to Santa Cruz issued demands to end racism, war, and climate devastation.
Sat Jun 27 2020 (Updated 07/07/20)
Juneteenth Becomes Huge Event Nationwide
Juneteenth commemorates June 19, 1865, the day when the Union army pronounced in Texas that all enslaved peoples in the United States were finally free. Among the many Bay Area protests this year was a thousand-strong march in San Francisco. In Oakland, the ILWU shut down the port before thousands marched through downtown. Santa Cruz marched in large numbers as well. In Palo Alto and Fresno, protesters painted "BLM" and "Black Lives Matter" in huge letters in the street.
Mon Jun 15 2020 (Updated 06/16/20)
Oakland Youths Protest to Rid Schools of Police
On June 10, a large contingent of Oakland's young people marched on Mayor Libby Schaaf's house to demand that police be removed from the city's schools. Shouting marchers, followed by a car caravan, worked their way up Fruitvale Avenue towards the home demonstration. Speakers at the vigil in front of the mayor's house denounced the millions of dollars spent on police, the school to prison pipeline, and demanded that the money go instead to real human needs.
Demonstrations continue around the Bay Area in the name of George Floyd, who was murdered by Minneapolis police on May 25, with tens of thousands taking to the streets. Protests in every corner of the Bay Area have been met with police force. Demonstrators say they won’t be stopping despite the risks posed by police attacks and the COVID-19 pandemic. Check out the full feature with coverage from across Northern California.
Sun May 31 2020 (Updated 06/02/20)
Memorial Day Caravans in San Francisco and San Jose
On a warm Memorial Day with California slightly relaxing its lockdown, a Code Pink caravan of decorated cars delivered an anti-war plea to the steps of Senator Diane Feinstein's Pacific Heights $10 million mansion. Later the same afternoon in San Jose, another peace caravan focused on the demand for human rights to health, housing, education, a living wage and all the components of a dignified life. Those participants delivered money to volunteers at a local homeless encampment. Organizers of both demonstrations said their goal was to counter the usual militaristic Memorial Day rhetoric.
Stanford Hospital healthcare workers are facing a choice that is not really a choice. Employees were shocked to learn that Stanford Health Care recently demanded frontline workers “share the sacrifice” in this time of pandemic, that they choose between being furloughed, taking paid time off early, or accepting a 20% pay cut over a 10-week period. On May 21, dozens of hospital workers and concerned members of the public protested in Palo Alto.
Holding a live model art session, students and senior artists converged on the huge Balboa Reservoir parking lot, across from the Community College of San Francisco, to protest the possible closure of the Fort Mason Arts Campus. This session was one of many protests and actions activists have held to protest CCSF's plans, which include austerity cuts and privatization at the expense of San Francisco seniors and working people.
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