Archive | September, 2011

Homelessness in Art from the New Deal to the Present

A new book by San Francisco artist Art Hazelwood, Hobos to Street People: Artists’ Responses to Homelessness from the New Deal to the Present, examines the legacy of political artists from the Great Depression to the Great Recession. It also serves as a catalogue to a traveling art exhibition.

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Los Angeles Janitors Fight for Their Jobs

Firings because of immigration status do irreparable harm to workers and to their communities. Immigrant workers didn’t cause the unemployment that plagues millions. They didn’t close a single plant. Big corporations did. They didn’t cause the economic recession or foreclose on anyone’s home. Big banks did.

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Time to Build a New World

The United States spends enough money in two weeks on war that would feed, house and clothe every person on earth. Why? When 10.6 million children in this country don’t have health insurance, why does the world applaud Donald Trump’s new multimillion-dollar contract with a television station?

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UN Expert Condemns Cruel Treatment of Homeless in U.S.

The UN Rapporteur’s report is the latest in a series of condemnations by international experts of the criminalization and mistreatment of homeless persons in the United States. A growing record of both domestic and international law states that homeless persons cannot be criminalized for basic life-sustaining acts.

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WINDOWS AND MIRRORS

WINDOWS AND MIRRORS: Reflections on the War in Afghanistan is a traveling exhibit that makes a powerful statement on a nearly invisible reality. The 45 panels created by international artists and U.S. and Kabul students help us imagine the experience of Afghan civilians – from death and destruction to hopes for peace.

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Democrats Cave in to Right-Wing Ideologues

Democrats are joining Republicans in Congress to shred the safety net for the benefit of the financial interests of huge corporations. Their rhetoric about “shared sacrifice” rings hollow when the vast majority of us are being sacrificed to the financial benefit of big banks and large corporations.

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Are People Really Homeless by Choice?

The belief that people are homeless because they brought their predicament on themselves, is one way to justify doing nothing to help. This rationalization allows society to consider the homeless person as a nuisance, one from whom we all need to be protected by law enforcement.

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The Bearing Witness Chronicles: Keeper of the Book

He finds sanctuary in the written word, praying it can hold him. He knows that too many frowns or raised eyebrows will translate to a small tug of his jacket, a kind or maybe not-so-kind tap on the shoulder and small words with large repercussions: “Sorry, but you have to go.”

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September Poetry of the Street

With more foreclosures/ than in Great Depression/ with no solution to unbearable/ homeless lives and the/ massive redistribution of wealth/ diminishing collective mental health/ with a President who plays it safe/ at every decisive moment for change/ keeps the generals and/ Wall Street happy/ there’s going to be more and more/ homeless children and huddled masses

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Society’s Failure to Care Is the Root of Homelessness

In one of the richest places in the world, people become so wrapped up in their own comfort and status that they don’t care about the human beings they are stepping over.

Visionary Art of Leon Kennedy

In Leon Kennedy’s painting, his living friends are portrayed next to long-gone elders and assassinated civil rights leaders. Even death does not shatter the bonds of love and community.

Welcome to Homelessness

The worst thing about homelessness, I sensed, would have nothing to do with bad weather, hunger or sleep deprivation. It would be the way I soon would be cast out like a leper, as though one would contract a deadly disease just from being in my presence.

Big Money Spends a Fortune to Fight Rent Control

Wealthy landlords, realtors and developers have teamed up and are spending a fortune to fight the efforts of renters to repeal the Costa-Hawkins Act, the law that severely limits the rent control options of California cities. Tenants have also launched rent control campaigns in 10 California cities.

Vicious and Cruel Assault on the Poorest of the Poor

Elected leaders of the national tenants union denounced the housing bill proposed by HUD Secretary Ben Carson as a vicious and cruel assault on the poorest of the poor. “Millions will be displaced if these deeply cruel proposals see the light of day. Congress should reject them out of hand.”

The DBA’s Assault on Free Speech in Berkeley

The DBA launched a new poster destruction policy, despite being warned it was unconstitutional by the City Attorney. Tearing down fliers is a textbook example of a free speech violation. No one has the right to make content-based distinctions about what is allowed to be posted or said in legal, public places.