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Re: “One of Oakland's Most Historic Figures Was Also Horribly Racist

Zero fact checking Cygna. Tiny fragments out of context constitute jingoistic writing. Do some reading of the actual source material.

Posted by Bruce Ferrell on 09/20/2017 at 7:52 PM

Re: “One of Oakland's Most Historic Figures Was Also Horribly Racist

As others have stated, this article is poorly researched and ignores historical context. London was actually relatively advanced in his racial attitudes for his time, and experienced an continuous evolution in his racial awareness throughout his life. As Gene Anderson states, he was raised in large part by a black foster mother, whose family he lived with for a good portion of his childhood. Many of his short stories, particularly his later ones, valorize people of color who are victims of colonialism and oppression by white people. The author could have mentioned "Koolau the Leper", "Mauki" or "Chun Ah Chun", just to mention three of London's dozens of short stories where protagonists of color rebel against, outwit and/or kill their racist colonial oppressors. "The Unparalleled Invasion" is in fact read by most scholars as a cautionary tale about biological warfare rather than taking it on face value as a celebration of Chinese extermination. London stated repeatedly that the real meaning of his stories lay in "the motif beneath the motif" he actually wrote his stories to NOT be taken solely at face value. Regarding the Jeffries/Johnson fight, he admitted that "as a white man" he wanted to Jeffries to win, but gave full credit to Johnson for his overwhelming victory- one of the only white sportswriters to do so. London wrote: "All hail to Johnson... what . . . [won] on Saturday was bigness, coolness, quickness, cleverness, and vast physical superiority."

Even though the author of this article feels that readers must be "forced" to read London in school, only his short story "To Build a Fire" and "The Call of the Wild" are still widely taught in school. London remains one of the world's most popular authors and is better regarded abroad than here in America, where most of his works were purged from the academic canon in the 1950s due to his ardent socialism, rather than his racism. And it bears mentioning that Haley's biography is perhaps the worst and most biased of the half-dozen or so biographies of London published in the last 20 years.

Posted by Chris Million on 09/20/2017 at 5:28 PM

Re: “One of Oakland's Most Historic Figures Was Also Horribly Racist

"This article has clearly had ZERO fact checking" - quotes from the man's writing aren't fact enough for you, Bruce?

Posted by Cygna on 09/20/2017 at 3:54 PM

Re: “Getting Rich Off Low-Income Housing

Sometimes, and sadly, even in 2017(!) we have to just pull these "offenders" (I'm trying to be nice) OUT! That means tail (follow) them, embarrass them in public, picket the properties-even their own homes,
I don't say this lightly, I have done so myself. It is a sorrowful thing to have to realize in life (but you MUST in order to survive in the long run) that there are people who are just -as my grandpa-and maybe yours too, said-"not even worth killin'". Sounds like this man, Brumbaugh.
All I know is, if I lived there-or my daddy or mama lived there-it'd be Hell to pay, Mr. Brumbaugh. Sometimes we just can't leave retribution to the Lord.

Posted by Lynita Otero on 09/20/2017 at 3:41 PM

Re: “The Albany Cross Resurrects Memories of the KKK

At the end of the day, there is plenty of historical evidence that yes, here in the Bay Area, racism has always been alive and well. The best reflection of systemic racism is evidenced by the 20th century pattern of housing linked to race. The banks, realtors and ultimately the cops insured that people of color could not and did not occupy housing in places they were not "supposed" to be. As African Americans migrating from the south came to Oakland and Richmond to escape terrorism, segregation and Jim Crow rules, they were not welcomed everywhere. The City of East Palo Alto was created by the relocation of the African American community from the Fillmore District of SF by Redevelopment projects. Blacks were systematically excluded from getting loans or purchasing homes anywhere else in SF or in any city down the peninsula. East Palo Alto was only fruit orchards at the time and it was decided that this was the spot. Cities like Albany and San Leandro were notorious for harassing people of color by escorting youth of color back to their own cities and closing down most housing opportunities. In the early 60's, my own parents were denied the purchase of a home in the Bayview neighborhood of San Leandro, despite having cash for the purchase. The owner, who had previously agreed to the sale, informed my Dad that the neighbors had pooled their money and overpaid for the house when they learned that a Black family was moving in. In the 1990's, a new Police officer who happened to be Black, was detained by his own department with drawn weapons while jogging under the Bart tracks in Albany in the middle of the day. The daytime patrol had not met the new Black guy because he worked nights.They later divulged that they responded to a citizen complaint that a Black man was seen running under the BART track.That was enough for cops to pull guns and throw their own fellow officer to the ground. There is an area in the Hayward hills affectionately known as "Hangmans Hill".I will leave it to you to guess what kind of community activities occurred here. The Bay Area is no way exempt from American history and facts like who Justin Herman really was and what he did need to come to light.

Posted by Gary Patton on 09/20/2017 at 2:18 PM

Re: “The Albany Cross Resurrects Memories of the KKK

Cross burnings are symbols of the KKK and hate. Illuminated crosses are not. We have an illuminated cross at the top of Mt Davidson in San Francisco and at the top of the Hollywood tunnel in Los Angeles. They are not symbols of hate. Trying to link an illuminated Easter Cross to the KKK is a kind of anti-Christian bigotry.

Posted by perpetua carthage on 09/20/2017 at 1:22 PM

Re: “The East Bay Still Has Some Very Visible Reminders of Our History of Racism

Did you know that as late as the early 70's there were active Klan chapters in Castro Valley? They were shutdown as fast as they were found too.

What exactly is EBX up to here? This type of reporting is SO erroneous as to fall into the category once called "yellow" journalism as practiced by Hearst "news" organization at the time of the Spanish American war ("Remember The Maine!")

Posted by Bruce Ferrell on 09/20/2017 at 11:05 AM

Re: “One of Oakland's Most Historic Figures Was Also Horribly Racist

What in the name of whatever deity you follow is going on at EBX?!?!?

This article has clearly had ZERO fact checking and strongly reminds me a story reported at FOX news!

Posted by Bruce Ferrell on 09/20/2017 at 10:57 AM

Re: “The Albany Cross Resurrects Memories of the KKK

1. The Albany Lions Club is suing the City of Albany itself and in addition several council members and staff.
2. The entire City Council unanimously declared the cross' presence on public land "inappropriate."
3. The cross does not "technically reside on a small patch of land granted to the Lions Club." The land is wholly owned by the City - the Lions have only an easement for access to maintain the cross. Easements only apply when another entity owns the property, otherwise an easement would be unnecessary.
4. The electrical wires were attached to a eucalyptus tree not simply run through them.
5. The 2010 Census data list Albany as 49.3% White(non-Hispanic) and 3.3% Black.
Comment: The Lions lawsuit states that the cross is "implicitly communicating traditional messages associated with the religious holidays and memorial of certain national events." It is a blind spot that the Lions are unable to recognize and acknowledge that the implied message of a large illuminated cross on public land is perceived very differently, and painfully, by many members of the community for many different reasons.
A. Neil, Albany resident

Posted by ANeil on 09/20/2017 at 10:54 AM

Re: “One of Oakland's Most Historic Figures Was Also Horribly Racist

Jack London wasn't perfect, but this is a terribly one-sided article. Jack London was raised the first years of his life by Jennie Prentiss, a black woman who had been born into slavery. She took him to church, the First African Methodist Episcopal church in Oakland, and he later donated a large sum to the church. Many of the newspaper articles he's slammed for are actually more balanced than the headlines (written by the newspaper editors) for them would suggest.

Posted by Gene Anderson on 09/20/2017 at 10:53 AM

Re: “One of Oakland's Most Historic Figures Was Also Horribly Racist

Well his grandkids that I know went to Cuba with us in 1970 and have worked tirelessly for a better , progressive Richmond

Posted by Earl Marty Price on 09/20/2017 at 10:41 AM

Re: “The Albany Cross Resurrects Memories of the KKK

This article is one error after another. There is no evidence the Lions Club owns the cross. They definitely do not own the land on which the cross sits; the easement only granted access for maintenance. The electrical service was disconnected because it was attached to a tree, which it used as a pole, not because it ran through a tree. The City Council unanimously declared that the cross should go in a February 2016 council meeting; this was not the sentiment of "several officials." Larry Hicok, Coordinator, East Bay Atheists

Posted by Larry Hicok on 09/20/2017 at 9:08 AM

Re: “Growing Clean Cannabis to Pass California's New Rules

It will be safer, and more intensely tested than our produce from California!
When will the produce industry be held to these standards?

Posted by Nora Demers on 09/20/2017 at 8:41 AM

Re: “One of Oakland's Most Historic Figures Was Also Horribly Racist

...not to mention London's support of James Jeffries, the so called "great white hope," to defeat Jack Johnson in 1910.

Posted by Scott G. on 09/20/2017 at 7:38 AM

Re: “Getting Rich Off Low-Income Housing

OK, questions not answered and seemingly not asked (what else is new with this writer?): How long has this been going on? What steps has the city taken in that time? This development didn't fall into this state is a few days or weeks. What city agency fell down on the job? Has the city contacted the state? Non-profits (and not for profits) ARE regulated at the state level. I noticed a local church is affiliated with this non-profit; Is this the reason the city hasn't taken action?

The fact that owner of the construction companies(s) lives a luxurious life is NOT really relevant to the on-going operation and management of the facility... Especially given that, per the article, he has no apparently active role with the organization.

More fire fanning, half written tripe from an "award winning" writer.

Posted by Bruce Ferrell on 09/20/2017 at 5:38 AM

Re: “Some Oakland Landlords Are Using a Legal Loophole to Exempt Housing from Rent Control

Our property management company, Mann Edge (they also own Friendly Cab taxi co), tried to pull this shit on our ghetto apartment building last year. They are like a bargain basement version of JDW, it sounds like. This whole building is falling apart in so many ways. Any repairs or renewals have been done in the cheapest and shoddiest manner possible. We went to a free legal tenant workshop for info and they explained this ridiculous loophole to us. They told us that the work done to the apartments would have to be pretty major to allow them to do this. I was very nervous. Thank goodness our slumlords were not prepared to spend any actual money on their attempt to exempt the building. We got another notice saying they had cancelled their exemption request. This place has bed bugs, for crying out loud (not my apartment, thankfully!)

Posted by Michelle Castro on 09/18/2017 at 2:29 AM

Re: “Turmoil Returns for Charter Schools

American Indian Public High is able to manipulate their test scores by essentially shedding the students it doesn't want. Other charters do this to game the system, but American Indian is one of the worst offenders. Between grades 9 and 12, more than half of the students leave the school. The school then uses the remaining 12th grade cohort to derive all of their manipulated statistics, such as test scores and graduation rates. The reality is that the school chooses the students, not the other way around.

Posted by Oakland_mom on 09/15/2017 at 2:41 PM

Re: “Callousness to Inequality Is Dooming Climate Change Progress

In the 80s and 90s, OCAW union leader Tony Mazzochi called for the creation of a "Worker Superfund," which would provide training and other workforce support for workers displaced by environmental reasons. Congress did create something similar for workers displaced by NAFTA, but it was less ambitious than what Mazzochi was calling for. It would probably be useful to locate new clean energy jobs near where workers are displaced in order to facilitate a workable program of getting displaced workers new jobs. However, these displaced workers (and those who claim to support them in the voting booth) and the unions who support or represent them have to step up, too. West Virginia should be making major efforts to transition its economy to clean energy, yet folks there are continuing to demand new coal jobs.

Posted by robbsmithideas on 09/15/2017 at 10:05 AM

Re: “Letters of The Week: Our Readers Chime in on the Potential Site for the A's New Stadium, and on Prop 13

What is the problem/issue with the current Oakland Alameda County Coliseum for use by the A's, please:) Why do the A's want to change locations, please?
Gordon Hopkins

Posted by Gordon Hopkins on 09/15/2017 at 9:19 AM

Re: “Report: Berkeley Police Six-Times More Likely to Use Force Against Black People

Has anyone studied how much more likely black people are to use force against the police ? I see bias here. Lovelle Mixon left a nasty legacy and he sure as hell was not the only one.

Posted by Kevin Smith on 09/15/2017 at 8:57 AM

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