Archive | August, 2010

Federal Government’s Complicity in Dismantling the Nation’s Affordable Housing and Shredding the Safety Net

WRAP housekeys graphic

Local municipalities have created laws that dehumanize and criminalize the homeless masses who simply have no place left to go. County jails have become this country’s largest residential mental health facilities.

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Life in the Slow Lane, An Old Man, A Van and His Dog

Framed. Although he is living a difficult life as a homeless vehicle dweller in San francisco, he adamantly rejects the notion that he is a homeless person. in his mind, he is a misunderstood, highly principled artist. Robert L. Terrell

I have never seen him visited by a relative or friend. Although he is surrounded by hundreds of thousands of people, his is an extremely lonely existence.

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Bay Area Protesters Defend the Rights of Immigrants

Protesters in the bay Area marched against Arizona’s law. David Bacon photo

“It’s no coincidence that Arizona has this outrageous law, because all the proposals from Washington on immigration reform encourage the same criminalization, racial profiling and discrimination. Immigrant communities are demanding an end to these policies and laws, including ‘Secure Communities’ and ‘E-Verify.’ We deserve a new direction from Washington, with real change, including legalization and workers’ rights.” — Renee Saucedo, La Raza Centro Legal

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‘This Law Is Very Unjust!’

Teresa Mina was fired in a crackdown on immigrant workers. David Bacon photo

Teresa Mina was a San Francisco janitor, member of Service Employees Union Local 87, when she was fired because the company said she didn’t have legal immigration documents. Immigration and Customs Enforcement told her employer to fire 463 workers because they lacked legal immigration status. She told her story to David Bacon the day before she returned to Mexico.

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The Message of Arnieville Lives On

A banner at the entrance to the Arnieville encampment quotes the prophetic warning of Martin Luther King: A nation that spends more money on the military than on programs of social uplift approaches spiritual death. Photo by Lydia Gans

The homeless people “really stood in solidarity with the disabled in this class action and took care of them — helped them get in their beds, helped them turn over at night, carried them in and out of their tents, stayed up all night with security.” — Dan McMullin

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No Place at the Table

Art by Christa Occhiogrosso

Across the nation, cities restrict charitable meal programs for the hungry and homeless. “As the recession and foreclosure crises drive dramatic
increases in poverty and homelessness, communities should
be embracing solutions to homelessness, rather than punishing
people for feeding those in need.” — Maria Foscarinis

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Poetry, August 2010

“Wet Night on Sutter Street” “Wet Night on Sutter Street” by Christine Hanlon, oil on canvas, 20” by 32 1/3”


by Claire J. Baker/

May you/
arrive at/
not by dying/
but by LIVING./
May the end/
begin a/

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PETRA Spells the Death of Public Housing

Holiday Home Luke 16: 25” A homeless man finds no home in this scene reminiscent of Thomas Kinkade’s art. Market-rate housing means mansions for the wealthy, shopping carts for the poor Painting by Jos Sances, 33” x 33”

The privatization scheme threatens to displace hundreds of thousands of low-income families, elderly and the disabled from their public housing units, and future funding shortfalls in the Section 8 program would place the housing units at risk of bank foreclosure.

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A Life Consecrated to Compassion and Justice

On the bleak streets of the Tenderloin, a sister took a stand against inhumanity. Her solidarity was inspired by the beatitudes and consecrated to the poor.

The Invisible Natural Cathedral of People’s Park

Builders, please go away. Allow the beauty of an Invisible Natural Cathedral to remain, a living shrine of open space that gives refuge to all people.

Street Spirit Interview with Sister Bernie Galvin

This atrocity was happening in a very wealthy city. It was happening right under our noses. It was very visible. And there was not the united voice of the faith community speaking out. That was the spark of Religious Witness. From that moment, I knew what I had to do.

Interview with Sister Bernie Galvin, Part Two

“What’s forming in my mind is Jesus in the temple when he became angry at the unjust and very exclusive systems of society. That is the very reason that there are the poor and the marginalized. It is not enough just to provide food, clothing and housing.”

‘Such Is the Magic and Spirit of People’s Park’

The mayor has no understanding of the awful defeat the loss of People’s Park would be. No comprehension of the cost in lives and the sacrifices people have made for the Park’s ideals. So many still find it a refuge in a country needing a political and spiritual overhaul.

I Remember Who I Am

“And Now Where?” Lithograph by Rockwell Kent

By and by, I calm down. I meditate. I pray. It is a beautiful day. The sun is setting. I weave my way toward the spot where I sleep, where nobody knows where to find me. I look to the stars, and say my prayers to the God who believes in Me.