Mitchell Halberstadt 
Member since Jul 15, 2013


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Re: “In Praise of Oakland’s Koreana Plaza

The solution to pedestrian safety is simple: reduce potential conflict points; don't increase them. There's a sidewalk, and the gutter, and pedestrians use the sidewalk (and crosswalks), and don't play in the gutter. Two-wheeled gnats, impelled to keep moving to maintain balance, darting in and out of blind spots and buzzing pedestrians, don't even belong in the mix. (Climate change? That's why we'll soon all be driving electric cars, and there goes your talking point!)

Telegraph is a thoroughfare between Downtown, North Oakland, and Berkeley; the gutter is not a playground. "Road diets" (such as the one on Tele) deliberately abolish passing lanes, forcing drivers to creep along single-file and grind to a halt whenever someone needs to park, deliver, or turn.

Swat the gnats!

Posted by Mitchell Halberstadt on 12/30/2018 at 7:27 PM

Re: “Federal Judge Says Oakland Can Close Homeless Camp on City-Owned Property

I'm skeptical (to say the least) of the notion that if the city can't provide housing, it must allow homeless people to camp wherever they choose (at the risk of being charged with "cruel and unusual punishment").

OTOH, if The Village has chosen vacant lots for its encampments, it's helping to keep its residents off the streets -- and away from more objectionable and dangerous locations. They might have an ideological axe to grind, but I would hope that they and the City can overcome their adversarial relationship and develop an alternative model for sanctioned encampments. Given the current crisis -- and the fact that the Tuff Sheds aren't for everybody --such a creative solution should be a priority on all sides.

Posted by Mitchell Halberstadt on 12/30/2018 at 12:53 PM

Re: “Fruitvale: The Town's Gem

What's with "Latinx" ("LaTINKS"?) -- which is neither English nor Spanish? The overall article is in English (which, mercifully, doesn't gender most nouns), so "Latin" should suffice.

As for being sensitive to ethnicity? How about sticking with peoples' usage of their own language? The author writes of "immigrants who lived in Fruitvale before Latinx. 'A lot of the businesses now owned by Latinos were sold by Portuguese,' Rivera noted." The irony is excruciating!

"Latinx" is about as crucial to the neighborhood's identity as Walgreens (In other words, it isn't!) -- except that in this instance, the invasion stems from misbegotten would-be "progressives."

Posted by Mitchell Halberstadt on 12/22/2018 at 5:10 PM

Re: “Federal Judge Says Oakland Can Close Homeless Camp on City-Owned Property

Just discovered!... a constitutional right to shelter? Really?

Posted by Mitchell Halberstadt on 11/28/2018 at 3:25 PM

Re: “Smart & Final’s Old Oakland Location Closes

Clarification of my comment re Trader Joe's: TJ's stocks products that can serve as staples for anyone, generally at low prices. The packaging is more imaginative, and the quality generally better, than the stuff at Smart & Final. So what's the problem? Not sending a dreary enough message to "serve" the poor?

Posted by Mitchell Halberstadt on 09/29/2018 at 9:18 AM

Re: “Smart & Final’s Old Oakland Location Closes

Plenty of people of color shop at Trader Joe's, too (many of them drawn by ultra-competitive prices for interesting goods). So what's missing? Products whose style appeals to those for whom "serve the community" is a dog-whistle to "Keep Oakland Poor"?

Posted by Mitchell Halberstadt on 09/27/2018 at 4:18 PM

Re: “Smart & Final’s Old Oakland Location Closes

I'd be truly sad if it were Ratto's going out. I'm with Riley C here -- Trader Joe's!

Meanwhile, not a word in this piece about the resounding success of Swan's Market, which has brought throngs into the area, day and night.

Posted by Mitchell Halberstadt on 09/27/2018 at 3:53 AM

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