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Re: “Seven Longtime Oakland Residents Share Their Thoughts on Gentrification

Thank you for telling it like it is Mr. Bryant. The "I got here first" attitude of some locals is really obnoxious, not just in Oakland but in many places. Is everyone just supposed to stay where they were born forever? Is culture never supposed to change?

I understand change is uncomfortable and we need to do everything we can to make sure everyone's needs are met, but the truth is we are all competing for limited resources and you have to grow and evolve as things change or someone else will figure out a way to take those resources from you.

Also, those "Oakland Native" shirts are very strange and confrontational. Is the point of these shirts to "other" newcomers? Is it an invitation to ask you questions about the city? It's not clear.

Posted by Nicholas Scribner on 09/21/2018 at 2:38 PM

Re: “The Forces Driving Gentrification in Oakland

TS, slow your roll and read.

The article says (as quoted by you): "White flight, in which white residents fled urban centers for suburbs, was another phenomenon that set the stage for the urban gentrification we see today."

Then you write: "How is that gentrification?"

Um. The article explicitly said it set the stage for gentrification. It did not, in fact, say that white flight was such.

Posted by Cynthia Gomez on 09/21/2018 at 2:32 PM

Re: “Can a New Oakland A's Ballpark Help Fight Gentrification?

Im not reading anything in this article that explains how a new ballpark is not going to increase gentrification.

The Access plan involves paying upfront, which doesnt seem like a great way to make the tickets more affordable (starting at $240)- Id rather walk up, thanks.

I know folks love Kaval, but hes not an owner, hes a smooth talking front office guy.

The As have always had community partnerships. Remember the Haas family?

This is a fluff piece with no real discussion of how a new ballpark will affect the immediate community, for better or for worse, or Oakland as a whole.

Posted by Joan Brown on 09/21/2018 at 1:34 PM

Re: “The Forces Driving Gentrification in Oakland

"White flight, in which white residents fled urban centers for suburbs, was another phenomenon that set the stage for the urban gentrification we see today."

How is that gentrification? You offered no further examination or explanation, and in fact, what you are describing in that paragraph is the exact OPPOSITE of all of your other examples of gentrification, so how do you explain that as an example of gentrification?

Posted by TS Edison on 09/21/2018 at 1:20 PM

Re: “The Forces Driving Gentrification in Oakland

gentrification isn't always bad. i feel safer living in oakland (east of lake) than i have for the past 36 years. Houses are nicely kept, streets aren't as dirty. Its nice to be able to walk around the neighborhood and not worried about being mugged or shot. Yes, some will get displaced. but if you can't afford to live in prime area then you just have to move further away. thats just how supply and demand works. Stricter rent control will decrease the likelihood of investors.

Posted by Jeff San on 09/21/2018 at 12:00 PM

Re: “Gentrification Changed the Names of Oakland Neighborhoods

Living in Santa Fe for almost 10 years (and Oakland/East Bay in general since 1980), I love how the articles casts *re-using traditional names* as gentrification. Some here have bristled at the 'NOBE' designation. It annoys me, but I'm not making a federal case out of it.

But I love how this article casts using traditional names as gentrification, and coming up with new ones as gentrification. The only legitimate names are gang names. Thanks, EBX.

Posted by burnowt on 09/21/2018 at 11:09 AM

Re: “Can a New Oakland A's Ballpark Help Fight Gentrification?

I've gone to A's games for years and characterizing these vendors as a vital part of the gameday experience is BS. I appreciate their situation, but I'd much rather they handled their business in a place that didn't slow down people just trying to go home. I'm fine with the vendors maybe taking up space on the very wide plaza area between the stadium and the walkway. But it is a stampede situation just waiting to happen with them where they are now.

The Express of late has gotten into the habit of conflating everything with a race/gentrification issues. Knee jerk contrarianism isn't insight. If people are ever hurt or killed in a stampede on that rather narrow walkway, guess who will be there blaming the City and A's for not addressing earlier concerns about the issue?

Posted by burnowt on 09/21/2018 at 10:53 AM

Re: “Can a New Oakland A's Ballpark Help Fight Gentrification?

Paul, Oakraidfanb, you're both absolutely correct.

What EBX divisively and exploitatively likes characterize as "anti-gentrification" is really no-change, urban nimby-ism attempting to protect itself with accusations of racism.

Yes, Barbecue Beck was way over the top and it definitely represents a culture clash... Calling on authority figures IS a norm in many places outside Oakland. Oakland on the other hand has long been the wild west where rules don't apply; We don't snitch and handle our own business... All too often with gunfire in the streets with no regard for bystanders.

How soon EBX and it's reporters forget the young black boy hit by a stray bullet that came through the wall of his house in one of these incidents. But they will happily help remind us of the man found in a car, reported used in a violent crime, who had a hand gun in open view and was shot... And howl for justice for him.

Was the shooting of that young boy ever solved? Where is EBX and it's resources for him?

The Raiders, A's, Warriors and the rest's of the professional sports megaliths have been a drain on the insufficient and precious resources Oakland has for decades.

While the players and owners grow fat on the backs of Oakland, we grow poor and poorer. While EBX and it's political backers play Boss Hogg, to their crony's, Oakland suffers.

A pox on the all

Posted by Bruce Ferrell on 09/21/2018 at 8:52 AM

Re: “Can a New Oakland A's Ballpark Help Fight Gentrification?

So can i bring my vertical smoker and sell BBQ plates on the ramp too on the under? How long would I last? Either enforce the law or not. I'm not mad at those trying to make a buck. They're playing the game within what has been allowed. That's hustle. BUT it is NOT safe on the ramp to impede the flow( musicians, (mostly) counterfeit apparel and knock off electronics (Disclaimer: BOTH of which I've bought from- I'm guilty too)- LET alone unregulated rigged-up carts with propane tanks on a crowded ramp. We're not even talking about any safety permits or anything. We seem to wink-wink and turn our head- particularly with the hot dog vendors as they are mainly"immigrants trying to make a buck so leave them alone". Again ask, so can I sell BBQ plates on the ramp also? I promise it's hella good. BUT we all know the answer to that...

Posted by Anthony Moore on 09/21/2018 at 8:35 AM

Re: “Can a New Oakland A's Ballpark Help Fight Gentrification?

As both an A's and Raiders season ticket holder, may I say that I have tried to complain about the crowded BART ramp during post-game Raider games. It is a FIRE HAZARD. Plain and simple. It has nothing to do with hustle. But the Raiders, the Oakland Fire Department, the Oakland Police Department, the Alameda County Sheriff, nor BART have done anything to alleviate the FIRE HAZARD that the vendors blocking the BART ramp represent. I was at the old Candlestick Park during the October 17, 1989 Earthquake. I was in Castro Valley during the October, 1991 Oakland Firestorm. I was in LA at a Broncos-Raiders playoff game, eight days before the January 17, 1994 Northridge Earthquake. If you are in or near a disaster area like those, you need egress, access, and exit space. One would think that with the recent Santa Rosa & Napa Fires, that one would learn to make certain that narrow, crowded areas have sufficient space, and are not FIRE HAZARDS. After the deadly Oakland Warehouse Fire, when the hell will Oakland learn? The A's fan who made the complaint is absolutely correct and on point with his comment. Now, will someone responsible please do something about a FIRE HAZARD which has now been in place since September 1995, please? Thank you. A's/Raider fan.

Posted by oakraidfaneb1b on 09/20/2018 at 9:30 PM

Re: “Is the Only Way to Make Housing Affordable By De-Commodifying It?

"various forces a shortage of new housing, severely lagging affordable housing construction, financial predation by banks and the real estate industry, and widening income inequality"

...add a strong anti-development bent by local governments, nimbyism, rampant speculation, and foreign money laundering

Posted by David Lubertozzi on 09/20/2018 at 8:37 PM

Re: “Sickle Cell: The Last Health-Care Frontier for Black Lives

Excellent article! I don't have to repeat all the praise from the eloquent commenters above. I will also just say thank you, Ms. Chang.

To the confused person also above: The racism is not in the disease itself but in the lack of response to it in this country. it's a national disgrace that goes back centuries.

Posted by flyingobject on 09/20/2018 at 6:59 PM

Re: “Is the Only Way to Make Housing Affordable By De-Commodifying It?

Ernest Montague on 09/20/2018 at 10:59 AM - Good thing the folks in charge of the for-profit housing market have such a good grasp of basic economics or we might have a huge market melt-down requiring government intervention with enormous public capital at stake...oh, wait a minute. Nevermind!

Posted by Bruce Schmiechen on 09/20/2018 at 5:22 PM

Re: “Is the Only Way to Make Housing Affordable By De-Commodifying It?

Just as an FYI, 60% of the housing in Vienna Austria is "social", i.e. either sponsored by the government or non-profits. And it's for folks across the income spectrum, with rents geared to reasonable % of income so costs may increase incrementally with income, but no pricing out. Having this much housing that isn't part of the market also keeps rents, etc down in the private housing sector.

There are alternatives, including partnered home ownership via land trusts as noted in the article, to housing models dominated completely by the market.

Posted by Bruce Schmiechen on 09/20/2018 at 5:13 PM

Re: “The Forces Driving Gentrification in Oakland

Paul Merr gets the kudos for the best remarks here. Don't stick your hand out and complain, stick your mind out and learn.

Posted by Ernest Montague on 09/20/2018 at 4:35 PM

Re: “Gentrification Changed the Names of Oakland Neighborhoods

Maxwell Park named after it's developer John P. Maxwell. He built his home at 2625 Maxwell Ave. The only home in that area that sits on a double lot. Nice styling!!! Check it out via Google maps. Traveling the area you can find large concrete markers, staking out Maxwell Park boundaries.

Posted by Paul Merr on 09/20/2018 at 12:43 PM

Re: “Can a New Oakland A's Ballpark Help Fight Gentrification?

FACTS MATTER!!! >>preposterous attempt to stop African American men from barbecuing at Lake Merritt.<<< That was NOT her position at all!!! Her complaint, that charcoal grills are not allowed on that side of the lake. She was CORRECT check for yourself!!! Too many people were disposing of the hot coals in shrubs etc. A child was burned and the park system sued for millions at another park location. LAWS NEED TO BE FOLLOWED!!!

It's the gentrifier's that helped curb Oakland's crime problem, not police polices!!! They call the police while many Oakland long time residents accept too much crime as it's the way you live in Oakland!!! And I'm a BLACK man
!!! I want our laws ENFORCED!!!

Posted by Paul Merr on 09/20/2018 at 12:25 PM

Re: “The Forces Driving Gentrification in Oakland

Blame Emeryville, for gentrification!!! That mall off the freeway and all those high rises weren't always there. It was nothing but warehouses and trucking firms in that area with dirt roads. I know because I used to service their computers. That is what started the change on the east bay side of the bay.

Malls built in San Leandro, Hayward, Union City, Pleasanton, Concord etc all contributed to an East Bay Area that helped bring high tech and and prosperous jobs. Minorities can participate it only takes education and many of it can be found & learned online at sites like,, all being very affordable. Plus the many local colleges that are in reach of all of us!!!

What really is hurting the Bay Area is the EXPECTATION people are owed something because they have been here longer!!! It's AMERICA!!! It's a country based on free enterprise, capitalism, and the desire to make something of oneself. Too many have decided to quit on life taking to drugs, yet many of our homeless are not from Oakland but other cities and states!!!

Those Oaklander's that are residences and can prove it that are homeless we need to HELP those people. That is our responsibility, yet those that are not they need to leave!!! Go back home ... get the help you need!!!

Others that are too lazy or just can't figure out how to make it in life ... join the military. They'll feed, cloth, educate you your entire adult life. America is filled with opportunities!!!

Posted by Paul Merr on 09/20/2018 at 12:10 PM

Re: “The Forces Driving Gentrification in Oakland

As a Black man who's family has lived in Oakland for more than 100 yr's I take offense to your column!!! You write >>redlining<< Just IGNORANCE on your part!!!! Look at the old redlining map for Oakland & Berkeley. What you'll find are the homes that Blacks OWNED are now worth more than $500,000!!!! My grandmothers old home at 1045 53st in N. Oakland recently sold for $978,000!!!! What in the HELL is the matter with you!!!! Back in the day everything in that area was about drugs, prostitutes etc!!! Hell, my family members that inherited that property eventually lost it!!! THEIR STUPIDITY!!! Nothing to do with gentrification!!! Our family members came from the south for a better life and housing. Now it's time for those that can't afford this area to relocated else where. Many homes across America are forsale for under $50,000 some in areas under $10,000!!! Yes, crime ridden, but so what ... that is what Oakland was back in the 70's - 90's, they should feel very comfortable!!! West Oakland homes were sold for $5 in the 90's. All we had to do was buy them and fix them up and stay for 5 yr's!!! I for one am GRATEFUL to the gentrifier's for bringing Oakland back!!!

I'll confess at one time I owned 4 homes ... Because of the 2008 crash I thought a few would never come back in value as I had taken money out as did many other Black home owners. I was wrong!!! That has cost me approx $1,000,000!!! I was smart enough to keep my main home!!!

Posted by Paul Merr on 09/20/2018 at 11:35 AM

Re: “Gentrification Changed the Names of Oakland Neighborhoods

"Another nickname is Sem City, a riff on the video game, and there used to be a gang in the area that went by that name also. But this part of Oakland has been rapidly gentrifying."

Newsflash: that gang and many others in this neighborhood are still massively active. And this area of Oakland is not gentrifying in the SLIGHTEST. Come on down and spend some time on Bancroft and Seminary before you report that foolishness.

And... "THE" Fruitvale? Where are you from? No one calls it "THE" Fruitvale, my man...

Posted by TS Edison on 09/20/2018 at 11:18 AM

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