Saturday, June 09, 2018

Sidewalks speak in the Mission

Here we have dueling messages:

QUEERS HATE/HEART TECHIES

Several days later, one side has painted out all ambiguity.
This does not make me happy. The newcomers in tech employment are here. They are now part of us, of San Francisco as it is today. Yes, they are frequently oblivious to who and what their infusion of cash and commerce has displaced. Sometimes that unconsciousness can be rude, racist, hateful. And more often it is just dumb insensitivity. But they are here. They are us. We, oldtimers who remain, need to interact with the new us and as much as possible come to see each other as neighbors.

The sidewalk wars seem pretty historically oblivious themselves. I've been here since 1972. For at least my first 20 years in the neighborhood, we queers were the rude, gentrifying, interlopers in the view of some of the community. Somehow, often by fighting alongside each other against police abuses and housing rip-offs, we learned to acknowledge and tolerate each other even if we remained culturally apart.

Not all the current residents are going to be driven out. Not all the techies are Mark Zuckerberg. Not all the techies are white. Neither are all the queers. We have to figure out what we can do together to make San Francisco a place where we can all live. We're stuck with each other.

4 comments:

Rain Trueax said...

You (as in the collective you) are there unless the laws change and people can evict those who get low rents in order to improve the units (just happening in Salem, Oregon); or until a new ballot measure enables raising property taxes to cover homelessness issues (increased by those being evicted). Seattle opted to solve that problem by a business head tax on the big guys, which may make more jobs leave it. In states without property tax increase protections, Arizona being one, our taxes went up a thousand dollars in a region of small homes, when a nearby city took over our previously unincorporated neighborhood. We can still afford it-- for now. I notice though a lot of the small homes are being bought by those who remodel them into more expensive properties. How long before the lower income families are gone, leaving South Tucson, etc. for the poor and questionable where the middle can go. For those who want to blame Trump for everything, this has been a big deal for much longer than he's had power... if he even does. I wonder sometimes how much of our system is ruled by powers we never even see. They let our elected leaders think they have power changing this or that just so long as it doesn't impact theirs-- and they don't even know what the word compassion means unless it profits them... Yes, a little cynical these days.

Joared said...

Homelessness is increasingly everywhere as we see here in northeastern Los Angeles County — most obvious in numbers the past ten years. Some of the attraction here, I think, is weather allowing comfortable outdoor living. A concerted community effort is made to provide assistance, but many reject. Too many necessitating law enforcement intervention seem to be either self-medicating with various drugs, including alcohol, or probably need medication. Increased physical and mental health services are likely needed, if the individuals will agree to accept.

Rain might be interested in reading journalist Jeff Sharlet’s 2009 book “the Family” regarding secret power, not limited to just the U.S.

Rain Trueax said...

Like East Indies, Joared. The Rothchilds. We have no idea who really calls the shots in the world-- and it's not new. Just sad for the poorest who have suffered for it :(

George Waite said...

There is no god.

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