Archive | Reviews: Books, Films and Events RSS feed for this section

Dogtown Redemption and Street Spirit Collaboration Video

Watch the Trailer: Dogtown Redemption (Official Trailer) from Dogtown Redemption.   Street Spirit and Dogtown Redemption (a film about Oakland’s shopping cart recyclers) are shaking up the media landscape. PLEASE, seek out your local Street Spirit vendor and take advantage of this special opportunity to a receive a DVD of the movie and a special […]

Read More Comments Off on Dogtown Redemption and Street Spirit Collaboration Video

Love in Every Frame

In a society that blames poverty on the poor, Dogtown Redemption shines a light on the resourcefulness, complexity, caring, and humanity found in the homeless recyclers Jason, Langdon and Miss Kay — often in greater measure than can be found in those much more fortunate. There is love in every frame.

Read More Comments Off on Love in Every Frame

Film Reveals the Humanity of People on the Street

In Dogtown Redemption, we learn to care about the lives of recyclers, celebrate their successes, and mourn their losses. The film shows those of us who haven’t had to collect cans to buy food, and don’t have to sleep in a makeshift tent, what life is like for those who do.

Read More Comments Off on Film Reveals the Humanity of People on the Street

Desperate Lives of Scavengers on a Harsh Streetscape

The shopping carts are operated by “drivers” making only a subsistence wage, receiving no health care, sick leave or vacation. Their low wages are a poor excuse for an assistance program. We root for them to thrive at it, at the same time we pray they can escape from it.

Read More Comments Off on Desperate Lives of Scavengers on a Harsh Streetscape

Dogtown Redemption Changes Your View of the World

Dogtown Redemption is an emotional testament to the humanity and perseverance of the recyclers and should enable all viewers to see the people behind the carts. Their personal circumstances are beyond challenging, but their tenacity and sheer strength as they navigate the streets of Oakland demand our admiration and respect.

Read More Comments Off on Dogtown Redemption Changes Your View of the World

Lessons Learned from The Greening of America

“Peace Is Not A Radical Idea.” Activists confront giant corporations and the war machine. Art by Tiffany Sankary

With hopes for immediate change fading, some have become disenchanted with organizing. Yet, retreating from activism to seek personal liberation leaves us powerless to resist war, economic injustice, and corporate tyranny.

Read More Comments Off on Lessons Learned from The Greening of America

A Poet’s Deep Compassion for Life

A portrait of Berkeley poet Julia Vinograd painted by her sister Deborah Vinograd

Vinograd’s deep-rooted compassion for life makes her portrayals of suffering, death, and destruction overwhelmingly poignant.

Read More Comments Off on A Poet’s Deep Compassion for Life

Short Fiction and Poetry – October 2010

“Sacred Heart” Art by Jos Sances, ceramic tile

  REFLECTION by Joan Clair A friend tells me she no longer has much or as much sympathy and compassion for the poor as she once had. For herself? In her 70s, her income hovers under $1,000 monthly with more than half of that going for rent. In another year or so her income may […]

Read More Comments Off on Short Fiction and Poetry – October 2010

Dogtown Redemption: Finding Gold in the Garbage

“We started making a film about poverty,” said Amir Soltani. “We ended up making a film about love.” The poverty of the recyclers profiled in the film is illustrated as people find or lose housing and shelter, find or lose loving relationships, and get a handle on their health and hope.

Read More Comments Off on Dogtown Redemption: Finding Gold in the Garbage

Writing for the Street Spirit: My 17 Year Journey

Writing for Street Spirit has awakened in me a sense of responsibility toward others. Street Spirit is a way for people silenced by big money and big media to have a voice.

Animal Friends: A Saving Grace for Homeless People

“I wrapped her in my jacket and promised I’d never let anybody hurt her again. And that’s my promise to her for the rest of her life. In my mind she’s a little angel that saved me as much as I saved her.”

A Testament to Street Spirit’s Justice Journalism

The game was rigged against the poor, but I will always relish the fact that Street Spirit took on the Oakland mayor and city council for their perverse assault on homeless recyclers. For me, that was hallowed ground. I will never regret the fact that we did not surrender that ground.

Tragic Death of Oakland Tenant Mary Jesus

Being evicted felt like the end of her life. As a disabled woman, she saw nothing ahead but a destitute life on the streets. She told a friend, “If I’m evicted tomorrow, I have no choice but to kill myself. I have no resources, no savings, no money, and nowhere to go.”

They Left Him to Die Like a Tramp on the Street

Life is sacred. It is not just an economic statistic when someone suffers and dies on the streets of our nation. It is some mother’s son, or daughter. It is a human being made in the image of God. It is a desecration of the sacred when that life is torn down.

Joy in the Midst of Sorrow in Santa Maria Orphanage

This amazing priest not only housed 300 orphaned children from the streets of Mexico City, but he also took care of 20 homeless elders in his own house and started a home for children dying of AIDS. Father Norman also ran a soup kitchen that fed many people in the village.