Just before 6 a.m. Tuesday, the four homeless mothers occupying an investor-owned home in Oakland texted the supporters who’d been faithfully guarding them since a court ordered their eviction last week. They were about to be kicked out.
“Sheriff is banging on the door right now please come to 2928 Magnolia Street right now to witness and film,” they wrote.
Video later showed sheriff’s deputies with the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office — who were ordered to carry out the eviction within five days after a judge ruled in the property owner’s favor Friday — trying to break down the door and return the property to vacancy. Advocates, who had been summoned to the home several hours earlier, appeared to surround the house on short notice. Marisa Kendall, a reporter for the Mercury News, said cops showed up in riot gear in turn to ward them off.
Dominique Walker, a 34-year-old mother to two young girls and member of the coalition that calls itself Moms 4 Housing, promised after Alameda County Superior Court Judge Patrick McKinney’s ruling that her cadre of moms and kids wasn’t leaving without a fight. They’d been there since November and celebrated the holidays there.
The sheriff’s deputies came when she was out of the home for a media interview, according to April Thomas, a spokesperson for Moms 4 Housing. Four people were arrested during the eviction — two mothers and two of their supporters, according to Thomas — but it wasn’t clear on what charges.
“We’ve heard from people all over the world who are inspired by our nonviolent civil disobedience. People who say that our action has shifted their perspective and helped them understand that housing is a human right,” Walker said in a statement Tuesday. “We’ve built a movement of thousands of Oaklanders who showed up at a moment’s notice to reject police violence and advocate for homes for families. This isn’t over, and it won’t be over until everyone in the Oakland community has a safe and dignified place to live.”
The moms had been illegally occupying the modest three-bedroom home since November, arguing that the property’s corporate owner should consider selling them the home at a fair price since housing has become so unaffordable in the Bay Area.
The mothers said they had a willing financier in the Oakland Community Land Trust, but that the homeowner wouldn’t come to the table to broker a deal.
The home is owned by Wedgewood Properties, a California-based company that buys and flips distressed homes. The company, which has called the mothers’ occupation “violent, dangerous, and unsuccessful,” urged the women to leave voluntarily. Saturday, the company released a press statement saying it had offered to pay the mothers’ housing and moving costs for two months so they could get back on their feet.
“Wedgewood is pleased this illegal occupation of its Oakland home has ended peacefully. That is what we have sought since the start,” Sam Singer, a spokesman for the company, said in a statement. “We will now work with a non-profit, Shelter 37, to renovate the home giving opportunities to at-risk Oakland youths and splitting the profits with the non-profit so that other youths may benefit.”
The Alameda County Sheriff’s Office has been threatening to remove the women from the home since last month. The women have warned that, if evicted, they’d simply rejoin the city’s 4,000 homeless who struggle every day to find space in a nearby shelter or a permanent home.
Cover: In this photo taken Dec. 30, 2019, Sharena Thomas, left, Carroll Fife, center, Dominique Walker, second from right, and Tolani KIng, right, stand outside a vacant home on Magnolia Street in West Oakland, Calif. (Kate Wolffe/KQED via AP)
Beijing to suspend buses entering or leaving capital to contain virus: state media
Beijing (AFP) – China’s capital will suspend buses that enter and exit the city boundary, state media reported on Saturday, as Chinese authorities scramble to contain a new SARS-like virus that has killed dozens in the country. According to state-run People’s Daily, “all passenger transport by road” that crosses in and out of Beijing will…
Beijing (AFP) – China’s capital will suspend buses that enter and exit the city boundary, state media reported on Saturday, as Chinese authorities scramble to contain a new SARS-like virus that has killed dozens in the country.
According to state-run People’s Daily, “all passenger transport by road” that crosses in and out of Beijing will be suspended starting Sunday, citing “requirements of epidemic prevention and control”.
George Soros Accuses Facebook of Working to Reelect President Trump
Facebook is helping to reelect President Trump in 2020 in exchange for protection, billionaire George Soros claimed Thursday in Davos, Switzerland. “Facebook will work to re-elect Trump and Trump will protect Facebook. It makes me very concerned about the outcome of 2020,” he said during a private dinner hosted by his Open Society Foundations at…
Facebook is helping to reelect President Trump in 2020 in exchange for protection, billionaire George Soros claimed Thursday in Davos, Switzerland.
“Facebook will work to re-elect Trump and Trump will protect Facebook. It makes me very concerned about the outcome of 2020,” he said during a private dinner hosted by his Open Society Foundations at the World Economic Forum.
The left-wing financier reportedly described Trump as “the ultimate narcissist” and a “con man” who wanted the world to “revolve around him.”
“When his fantasy of becoming president became a reality,” his ego grew significantly, Soros alleged, then added, “This has turned his narcissism into a malignant disease.”
However, a Facebook spokesperson called the accusations “just plain wrong.”
January 9, the social media company announced that it would continue to allow politicians to run advertisements and “would not police the truthfulness of the messages posted,” according to Fox News.
“Ultimately, we don’t think decisions about political ads should be made by private companies,” said Facebook’s Director of Product Management Rob Leathern.
In the absence of regulation, Facebook and other companies are left to design their own policies. We have based ours on the principle that people should be able to hear from those who wish to lead them, warts and all, and that what they say should be scrutinized and debated in public.
Soros’s Open Society Foundation’s website states that it believes “the solutions to the national, regional, and global challenges we face demand the free exchange of ideas and thought, and that everyone should have a voice in shaping the policies that affect them.”
Despite his foundation’s commitment to the free exchange of ideas, Soros called the Trump administration “a danger to the world” at Davos in 2018, and also accused social media companies of encouraging addiction to their platforms.
The billionaire stated:
The distinguishing feature of internet platforms is that they are networks and they enjoy rising marginal returns. They deliberately engineer addiction to the services they provide. This can be very harmful, particularly to adolescents. As Facebook and Google have grown into ever more powerful monopolies, they have become obstacles to innovation, and they have caused a variety of problems of which we are only now beginning to become aware.
“Davos is a good place to announce that their days are numbered,” he concluded.
Schiff: ‘Uncontested’ that Trump Invited Ukraine ‘to Help Him Cheat’
During a press conference on Saturday, House Impeachment Manager and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) stated that President Trump’s impeachment defense team did “not contest that the president solicited a foreign nation to interfere in our election, to help him cheat.” And that “they acknowledge, by not even contesting this, that the facts…
During a press conference on Saturday, House Impeachment Manager and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) stated that President Trump’s impeachment defense team did “not contest that the president solicited a foreign nation to interfere in our election, to help him cheat.” And that “they acknowledge, by not even contesting this, that the facts are overwhelming.”
Schiff said, “First of all, what was most striking to me about the president’s presentation today is, they don’t contest the basic architecture of the scheme. They do not contest that the president solicited a foreign nation to interfere in our election, to help him cheat. I think they acknowledge, by not even contesting this, that the facts are overwhelming. The president invited Ukraine to get involved in our election to help him cheat against Joe Biden. That is uncontested, uncontested in our presentation and uncontested in theirs.”
Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett
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