When the rich can sit on the sidewalks

If you think the Bay to Breakers was just a benign day of public drunkenness, think again

By Tiny

OPINION Steel gates, steeds with silver spurs, lush red carpet lining the streets, uniformed officers guarding velvet-roped grand entrances to fancy costume balls while commoners are arrested if they so much as stop to rest on a nearby sidewalk. Sounds like the days of feudal England, or Marie Antoinette's Paris. Guess again — its San Francisco, circa 2010.

In the wake of the proposed sit-lie law, which would make it illegal for poor people to sit or lie on any public sidewalk or street, the San Francisco is increasingly giving public streets and sidewalks away to large corporate festivals where rich, mostly white people stumble around with open containers, drunk and disorderly.

Since last month's expanding Bay to Breakers "race," at which drunk, oddly dressed white people sat on curbs, stumbled into doorways, toppled onto the streets, and partied with entitled impunity as only people with race and class privilege can in this country, I have felt uneasy. This so-called run, supported by large corporations, has increased its land grab of several blocks of city streets, causing increased traffic, pollution, and blocked arteries for pedestrians, cyclists, and cars — all so that white people can party in undisturbed inebriation all across the city.

And if you think it was just a benign day of public drunkenness, think again. Several of my friends of color who made the mistake of being outside on race day were subjected to an onslaught of hate speech from some very threatening gang members (from the INGCHARLESSCHWABSTANFORD Gang. "You think this is Arizona?" "Are you here to be a valet?" "Go Back to Mexico."

I was riding my bicycle a week later only to be stopped on my route up Van Ness Street because of the two-day preparation, and then almost 24-hour exclusive usage of McAllister and Van Ness streets for the Black and White Ball. Again: a state-sanctioned, corporate-and-private-philanthro-pimped event for rich white people to get drunk and party on city streets.

Why is it that white people in a corporate-sanctioned party are seen as more safe or civilized than the rest of us — and how do houseless people, poor people, and people of color get criminalized in our own communities for the sole act of convening, standing, talking, or being?

It's important to note that the rhetoric and propaganda in support of sit-lie has gone so far as to cite the struggle of disabled people to get by sidewalks "cluttered" with houseless people or businesses having their customers scared away by houseless folks convening. Yet the plethora of drunk people lying on sidewalks after Bay to Breakers are not seen as an obstacle to safety.

Tiny, a.k.a Lisa Gray-Garcia, is editor of POOR Magazine.


Tiny, I understand this is your opinion but it sounds very racist to me. I'm Asian American and I've had my share of Bay To Breakers and it's always been a melting pot of San Francisco Bay area residents. From black, white, asian, indian, LGBT, and others it's a big party on the streets of San Francisco. I'm sorry that your friends experienced racist hate, but to point out "drunk, oddly dressed white people sat on curbs.." is a very racist statement as well it goes both ways. As for the Black and White ball tickets are sold to anyone who would like to buy a ticket. Everyone is invited to purchase tickets to the event, which is the primary fundraiser for the San Francisco Symphony.

When homeless people sleep in front of my building and yell at me when I ask them to move doesn't make me feel safe at all especially when I work hard to be able to pay rent, put food on the table and donate money to charitable causes. The last thing I want is a homeless person sleeping in front of my door and defecating on my yard.

Posted by Richard on Jun. 09, 2010 @ 11:44 am

LOL. Oh heavens, yes, I see homeless people shitting on people's lawns/yards all the time.

That's the same shit I read on SF-Hate (also known as SFGate), that backwater cesspool. They really have a fixation for bowel movement on there. The rabids love to talk about seeing homeless people having bowel movement and pissing all over the place. (You left the pissing part out). If one didn't know any better, one would think that every street corner in this City was piled high with bowel movement....that's the way the rabids tell it on SF-Hate. Those useless trash.

If a homeless person is sleeping in front of your building, can't you just nicely say "excuse me" to get by them? Why do you have to ask them to move? If all of your doors (and windows) are secure with locks in your building why do you have to ask them to move? And what tone of voice do you use when you ask them to move? You also say you pay rent. You rent and you have a yard? Really? I suppose that's possible but often if someone is renting a place the yard is in the back...where homeless people couldn't get to.

Who buys tickets to the Black and White Ball? Yes, anyone can buy them IF THEY CAN AFFORD THEM. In this economy, I wouldn't be buying them.

Posted by Sam on Jun. 09, 2010 @ 12:33 pm

Right on! How DARE someone who lives in the city NOT want to have their homes defecated or urinated on? After all, defecation is natural, and everyone should be free to put their feces where they want to.

Yeah, just "ask" people who are drunk or mentally ill to please not do X. It works well! Basically, you just stand guard 24/7. It's actually easy.

Sam, where do you live? I assume it's cool to just defecate or urinate there, maybe on your stoop. Even cooler if you have children, or aren't rich enough to install gates around your stoop or home. You deserve credit for being so liberated and open minded.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 12, 2010 @ 8:14 am

I believe homeless people should be offered service and assistance with getting off the streets. Most homeless individuals suffer from mental illness or chemical addiction, or some combination of both. We certainly have the resources available, but for whatever reason they aren't being channeled effectively. What irks me is not the fact that we have homeless people in San Francisco (and across the United States), but that self-titled "homeless advocates" seem to be committed not to helping homeless individuals get housing and mental health or addiction treatment services, but rather to fighting for the "right" for homeless individuals to live in squalor on the streets where they generally end up dying a premature death from malnutrition or sickness. I am tired of the typical self-righteous attitude of the whacked-out far-left of San Francisco (many of whom go by the misnomer of "progressives," as if letting people die on the streets is progressive) who really don't want to help the homeless so much as they want to score political brownie points by attacking anyone they view as less liberal and enlightened as themselves (i.e. anyone who doesn't agree 100% with their views).

Also, Sam, if you haven't seen a homeless person urinating or defecating on the streets of San Francisco, then you don't live in the City. I live downtown and there is regularly human excrement and urine in front of my residential building. I can assure you that none of my fellow residents are using the toilet on our front sidewalk, nor is our building near any bars/nightclubs which might attract late-night partiers who need to relive themselves while bar-hopping. So, let's stop playing the PC game, and just agree that many (though not all) homeless people do use the sidewalks as toilets.

I am glad to pay taxes to ensure there is a social safety-net and that people who need help get it. The problem is that it seems most of the funds supposedly going to provide social services in San Francisco get sucked into a big bureaucratic black hole. Perhaps, if the city government and the non-profit organizations it contracts with did their jobs and provided services with measurable successful outcomes to help alleviate homelessness in the community, then there would not be so much support among an exasperated public for a sit-lie ordinance.

Posted by Chris on Jun. 17, 2010 @ 10:05 pm

The author of this article is really creating a racial issue where there is none. There were lots of non-white (as well as non-rich) people participating in the bay to breakers. I don't think the white people were any drunker than the others. Also, many of the punks blocking the sidewalk in the Haight are white, not people of color. So why try to create a racial issue by comparing the two?

I totally agree that B2B has degenerated into an out-of-control party. But that opinion is a widely shared among white people (see C.W. Nevius' columns). I think the fault line in attitudes towards B2B is between more between mature adults and those who still think like college students -- not race or class

And, BTW, there are plenty of times when the streets are turned over to people of color -- for example, Carnaval in the Mission and the Chinese New Year Celebrations. Those are huge undertakings that are far more disruptive to traffic etc. than the Black and White Ball. As they (like the B&W Ball) are well-managed, I don't have any objection to them.

I think the issues with the B2B and sit-lie will be easy to resolve if people don't try to bring racial issues in where there are none. Though it is tough for some people to believe, not everything is about race and class.

Posted by Bob on Jun. 12, 2010 @ 12:21 pm

Thank you for posting this. This is the first time I've responded to a blog, and only because the original poster is completely off the mark. He can't find a solid argument to vote against sit/lie, so he desperately turned it into a racist issue.

Ironically, he's now being the racist by turning it into a race issue where there was none.

Posted by alex on Jun. 13, 2010 @ 8:24 am

I am tired of how, every time someone calls out the privilege that people who have more enjoy and also point out that the people who have more in the Bay Area, the state, and the country are on average WHITE, i hear "oh, that's racist!". Racism is more than just using the terms that denote race in a sentence, dear Richard, it has to do with privilege. Namely, who has it and who doesn't,. and how that is tied to skin color. Get your thinking cap out, man... okay, race is tied to income, which is tied to privilege in this country and many others, yeah? And since you bring it up, the only racial group that makes more in family income per year according to 2008 US Statistical Report are, guess who ----- ASIANS(!), so you should double check because, statistically speaking, you may even BE on that privilege train! The people who attend Bay to Breakers are not all white people, of course, but the event is not exactly aimed at or overwhelmingly attended by people of color, from what I have seen every year (and i've lived here all my life). Tiny is pointing out how the rules change when us WHITES who have a bit of spending money converge on a city, even "liberal" San Francisco.

I have worked the Castro Street Fair, Castro halloween, Folsom Street Fair, and Dore Alley in this city. These are great events, lots of fun. While i was community-policing on Castro, i would go to trainings for the job and be instructed to "leave people alone, no matter what they're doing, whether it's smoking crack or drinking in public or having sex in the street.." I'm cool with that. What i'm not cool with is the idea that these party people are somehow entitled to behave certain ways and TO CHOOSE TO DO IT in the street, while others who may not have a choice of where to do what they do are utterly criminalized. Do you think people want to be outside?? I know there are some die-hard nomads out there (mostly young white punkrock kids), but by and large, people want housing.

I have very little sympathy for you having to step into your nice, warm house over a person who isn't able to afford a house. I think it's totally reprehensible that you and others like you are so disconnected from what is going on in the Bay Area, in the state, and in the country, that you think that guy is sleeping on your step because he doesn't work hard like you think you do. I think that people who share your opinion are really afraid to confront the people who REALLY screw you (gov't that doesn't provide for the needs of those destitute, big companies and wealthy individuals that do not pay their fair share and have not for decades) so you all make a big issue out of POOR PEOPLE who make good scapegoats. Hey, i just had a thought, Richie... maybe if they HAD SOMEWHERE TO GO, they would not be on the street! How about you spend some of the email reply energy writing to your representatives saying you are sick of people having to sleep on your stoop and why don't the bastards fund housing programs fully instead of giving your boss's boss tax breaks?

Sit-Lie is not a solution any more than any of the other laws about so-called vagrancy have been over the years. If you want people off the street, make it possible for them to afford housing on McDonald's or welfare or Social Security wages instead of letting real estate profiteers drive up rents and then complaining about somebody else til it's YOUR ass out on the street.

Posted by teethgrind on Jun. 14, 2010 @ 9:41 pm

Again...another idiot selectively reading and responding to those selected facts.....It wasn't the act of asking the bum to get the hell out of the doorway. It was the reaction by the no respect having bum who got pissed off for asking to get the hell out of the way....I get so annoyed at this homeless disease going on in this city that I totally understand setting them on fire....Even though I never would do that

Posted by Guest on Aug. 26, 2010 @ 9:14 pm

"Tiny" your opinion is counter-intuitive

Posted by Chris Pratt on Jun. 09, 2010 @ 12:49 pm

Did you learn that phrase over a latte...lightly whipped?

Posted by Joseph on Jun. 15, 2010 @ 9:42 am

It reads more like race-baiting, or just racist, dribble. I'm not sure how Bay to Breakers is relevant to your argument (then again I'm not entirely clear on what your argument is). Bay to Breakers is far from a fancy costume ball. It's an open event with about 100K people of all races and creeds who certainly look like "commoners" to me. And unlike the Black and White Ball, the event is free to those who elect not to register.

If you're trying to fight sit-lie, this article is not helping your cause. Stereotyping the people who like Bay to Breakers kind of undermines your argument against stereotyping.

Posted by DBS on Jun. 09, 2010 @ 10:37 pm

Well said.
I'm especially attracted to your word "commoners"
Personally. I would have toned that down in this town.
But, I agree.
If you have any interest, I have begun a movement to bring the Queen back.
I'm especially interested in luring Prince Charles to the city.


Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2010 @ 5:56 pm

That's why it's in quotes. See the 1st paragragh of the article.

Posted by DBS on Jun. 12, 2010 @ 10:00 am

My father opened a doctor's office in what was at the time a rough part of Baltimore. In the morning he frequently had to kick bums out from under the front door awning so he could open his practice and not have his patients deal with a heroin-addled beggar on their way in. As a rent-paying individual contributing to the improvement of the neighborhood he had every fucking right to do this. To argue otherwise places you firmly in uber-liberal, perspective-lacking fantasyland.

I'm fairly new to The City and absolutely loved Bay to Breakers. I've been to similar all day drinking events like Baltimore's Preakness stakes and I was stunned not to have seen a single fight or even confrontation at B2B.

My evidence of the good spirit in B2B is as anecdotal as the racist incidents you mention but overall I think you're blowing things out of proportion. Bums in this city probably get better and more preferential treatment here than any other city in the country. They are not as bold, numerous or crazy on the east coast as they are here. I have, in my wide travels foreign and domestic, never seen so many barking-at-the-moon, talking-to-themselves certifiably crazy people wandering the streets as I have in SF.

Posted by Rob G on Jun. 10, 2010 @ 8:09 am

I expect anti-B2B tirades from the Chronicle, but I thought the Guardian was fighting AGAINST "the war on fun". Did you surrender?

Posted by MLee on Jun. 10, 2010 @ 9:47 am

MLee, this is a guest opinion piece and not the position of the Guardian.
Steven T. Jones
City Editor

Posted by steven on Jun. 10, 2010 @ 11:13 am

nice to hear

but you guys shook a lot a people up

I will write more on this. reminds me of
The War of the Worlds

This was an Orstan somebodys idea of a college panty raid
before my time
but i see bits and stuff on Tv now a agian

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2010 @ 9:26 pm

I realize that as the Editor of Poor Magazine you think you are fighting the good fight to help the poor and down-trodden; but by writing such a racist op-ed piece is only leading by example and teaching others that it is okay to racially or economically profile someone as long as they aren't poor.
That is total BS. I am a single mother living in San Francisco, up until Feb of this year I was considered "low income". Even when I was laid off last January, the only government assistance I took was Unemployment; because I didn't feel I needed it and didn't want to take benefits from someone who did. I worked odd jobs and pinched pennies for over a year until I was able to find a good full time job.

I work very hard for my money and very hard to keep my head above water. While I agree that to a point homeless and poor need a helping hand; I don't need them breaking into my car looking for something to sell for drugs or alcohol. I can't afford to keep replacing that window.

Now to bring this back to BTB and B&W B. I am Irish-Panamanian but look white and I do not participate in BTB because I don't want to be around a bunch of drunk fools all day, no matter what race. In my eyes the B&W B is a waste of money, yes part of the ticket cost goes to charity; but I'd rather just write a check than pay for a lavish party. Not that either of them has anything to do with being white.

Posted by Citykat on Jun. 10, 2010 @ 11:24 am

I didn't realize that Bay to Breakers was a white-only event. Maybe this is a different race than I ran on May 16, 2010 in San Francisco, because that one was a celebration of diversity and San Francisco spirit. That race featured people of pretty much every race you can imagine, up to and including Na’vi from Pandora. The top five male and female finishers of the race are all from Africa. Apparently you also missed the President Obama look-alike? I can understand your frustration in standing up for the underserved, but let’s not make the great San Francisco tradition of Bay to Breakers the whipping boy for all things bad. Try running in the race next year instead.

Posted by Runner on Jun. 10, 2010 @ 12:07 pm

I normally wouldn't comment on such a bizarre piece, but the Guardian should be taken to task for publishing this as though it makes serious arguments. Attempting to draw a comparison between sit-lie proposals and city celebrations is deeply strange--there is no relationship between these things. The suggestion that the race is racist is even more outlandish. This article makes the race sound like some kind of klan march, but if you Google-image search Bay to Breakers, I think you'll find an overwhelming number of photos showing a diverse crowd of happy, smiling and altogether NOT-sinister people. Further, *IF* Breakers could be said to celebrate a particular racial group, it wouldn't be white people. The men's elite division has been won by a Kenyan for 20 consecutive years, and by a Mexican for four years prior to that. The women's division has been won by Africans more than half of the last 20 years. These are the superstars of Bay to Breakers, and lest anyone think this aspect is not celebrated, search the news coverage from May 17 and you'll find a great deal of coverage given to these athletes.


Posted by Guest on Jun. 10, 2010 @ 12:40 pm

Tiny should have her keyboard confiscated. To give such an assinine opinion air time is astonishing. It's unfortunate that today's media needs to promote the loudest opinions instead of the most well reasoned.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 10, 2010 @ 1:27 pm

like tiny, i am a poor mexican. that is, i am of mexican heritage, and i don't make very much money. what i am not is a whiner. maybe if tiny spent less time hating rich white people, she could spend more time finding a job that pays well so she can buy herself some skin whitening treatments like michael jackson.

Posted by Poor Mexican on Jun. 10, 2010 @ 1:39 pm

3...2....1... Cue Mr Evans please.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 10, 2010 @ 4:29 pm

I have always dreaded Bay 2 Breakers, cutting the city in half for most of a day and making it incredibly difficult to get to work or get to whatever else I might be wanting to do. This time, at least, when I made it down Van Ness to Market at 12 Noon, the thundering herd of people with too much time on their hands to know what to do with it was gone...except for the folks going home after running or gawking.

This isn't the first time someone has said something about B 2 B or other events. How soon we forget the middle class folks who live on the B 2 B route who complained on TV news about the public drunkness, peeing, pooing, etc. When they complain, and Ing drops B 2 B like a stinky rotten tomato, I didn't notice much reaction. When Tiny sez something, yowza, all the haters come out to play!

A couple years back there was great concern over how many charity running and walking events had come to take over The Streets of San Francisco and possibly the rest of the Bay Area. I've been watching those "Pink Warrior" TV commercials, it seems, my whole life this year. It's a nice, safe cause, but geeeeez...

Tiny rarely misses her target. What Tiny didn't say is that until this year Black/White Ball just happily did its thing and didn't bother anyone. We get warned when DayBlight Slavings Time comes around, we get warned when B 2 B hacks the town in half, we get warned about the street fairs--I don't recall any TV news clone saying a word about how this time, without any warning, they planned to take over Van Ness and force some of us (who both don't have the money and wouldn't spend it on a ticket if we did) who just freakin' want to go home to detour way the H around.

I don't have any problem connecting the dots between Sit/Lie, B 2 B, and BWB. Quite a few folks stereotype the poor as dirty filthy lazy scum who should just be thrown under the bus, and those same folks want to wave their wealth in our faces and have massive, extravagant celebrations that communicate the message that everything is fine in SanFranville--for some.

If Sit/Lie gets on the November ballot, if it passes, will all you Foodies, drunk and pink racer-walkers give up your bougie sidewalks and tables? I mean, if the homeless can't Sit/Lie, everyone should give up the sidewalks!

Posted by redbeardedguy on Jun. 10, 2010 @ 5:32 pm

Whether the author intends to or not, the author is creating a bifurcation. It is an artifical creation and also a fallacy, and also a pretty standard (as well as worn) rhetorical device. The article is framed so you have to pick a side: either the drunk white B2Bers, or the homeless and non-white (for lack of a better term). That attempt at polarization puts the reader in an awkward position, because although one can obviously criticize B2B without having to defend the homeless' right to sit-and-lie, as well as defend the proposed sit-lie law without reverting to B2B, the text does not make either of those an option.

Posted by foddertothefire on Jun. 10, 2010 @ 11:15 pm

You're way off.

Posted by Max on Jun. 15, 2010 @ 9:46 am

i've participated in b2b for a couple of years, i'm also white. aside from the union street festival (my least favorite in SF), B2B has got to be one of the whitest festivals in the city. SF is a large metropolis and B2B attracts thousands from all over the place, so clearly there will be non-white participants, but in large, it's a mostly young, white event. in my opinion, "runner's" response helped prove that point by having to pick out very rare cases of color like "the President Obama look-alike."

in oakland (where i live), you rarely see a group gathering for a public event that is dominated by one color and if it is, it's not usually white. i'm not ashamed to be white or of the fact that many of my friends are white, but this year's event made me more aware than ever that B2B is a painfully young, well-off, white crowd. after all, there has been a black exodus from SF for years and from my understanding, it hasn't stopped.

Posted by itiswhatitis on Jun. 11, 2010 @ 2:37 pm

I'm just delighted to hear that the poor finally have their own magazine.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2010 @ 2:56 pm

Sorry Tiny, but there is a huge difference between the B2B crowd pissing on your lawn once a year and the gutterpunk trash shitting in your doorway every single day.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2010 @ 3:00 pm

Just wait until they decide to make a movie in your 'hood (or somewhere along your bicycle route), Tiny. I've been blocked from my garage for weeks at a time and had klieg lights shined in my bedroom window at 1 AM because the "San Francisco Film Commission" doesn't give a f*ck about regular taxpayers but wants to party with the Hollywood crowd. Really, one day a year may be annoying but it's tolerable and predictable. Whenever "the City" seems a nice film location is another thing.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2010 @ 3:21 pm

Most of the runners of B2B were just that, runners. The drunks and troublemakers were unwelcome and unregistered spectators that no one in this great city wants around, sitting, laying, or peeing anywhere here. Next year's sponsors (ING has bowed out) and the city will need to work harder to register participants in the race, especially those who show up to just dress up and have some fun, as the B2B race was intended.

There are no race qualifications to pull a street closure permit and hold an event; any individual can do it for a small fee.

You are way, way off on this post.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2010 @ 3:24 pm

Gotta disagree with you. I didn't see a whole lot of "Runners". Maybe a lot of folks in tennis shoes, shorts, and goofy costumes. Tennis shoes do not a runner make.

Posted by Joseph on Jun. 15, 2010 @ 9:41 am


Dear editor(s) of the Guardian:

In the hard copy edition of the Guardian of June 9 (on stands now) there is an opinion piece on page 5 titled

"When the rich can sit on the sidewalks"
in reference to the proposed Sit Lie ordinance.

authored by "Tiny" a.k.a. Lisa Gray Garcia editor of "POOR" magazine. An opinion piece.
Good title

Tiny talks about her experience with rich corporate festivals, "Bay to Breakers", being the example used,
where mostly drunk white people run around and are disorderly.
Tiny makes a point here, there is truth in it.
She talks about some of her "friends of color" who were "unfortunately" outdoors during the
event and were subjected to slurs and hate speech. Also mentions the hardship of street blockages
from the "Black and White Ball", also "for white people".

Though my wife and I are white, we have never participated in either of the above mentioned events

When I read the article and I wrote this letter I was sober.
I have lived in this city for 30 years, I know it's liberal, I frequently read the Guardian. I feel I'm not
crazy. I walk around, I am familiar with this cities quirks and charms. I like the place. It has
its problems.

This piece left me in a state I never felt in before. Something caused me to feel compelled to write this
letter to the Guardian, something I never thought to do before. Like a movie script of an alien invasion.
Maybe it was the logic, the insanity, the feeling from the writer that their whole world could be
shattered if a "Sit Lie Ordnance" might be passed in this city.

I thought about it and decided I could not fault Tiny. She may just be wacko, she believes it.
No, my quizzing is directed to the Guardian.
What were you thinking. I know your liberal but isn't this too insane, even for you.
Maybe it's a slow week and the subs were in charge. Maybe it's all made up.
I don't actually expect an answer, maybe your embarrassed, maybe you think I'm crazy.
You are the Publisher with the newspaper, I'm just a puzzled citizen who votes on occasion and reads
your paper.



P.S. Usually love the Guardian

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2010 @ 5:45 pm

Sorry to bother you

I went to Walgreens
They don't carry "POOR" magazine
Went to Farleys in my Potrero neighborhood (lots of magazines)
They did not have it.

Can you let people know where to find it.
What is the subscription price?

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2010 @ 6:05 pm


Still no reply

I sit here in this Sf neighborhood basically one of those frustrated writers
everybody writes about.
Just last week somebody wrote about it.
IF you at the Bay Guardian thinks I care your incorrect.

Isn't the internet great.
years ago writers had to shlog to a far away damp cold office to see a fat slob
editor and beg for publicattion
I realize these days many editor are in pretty good shape , they go to all those

So, please don't read a lot into this

I was thinking about having a whole page, fucking 5 whole pages in the Bay Guardian
Yeah, a fantasy you think i am crazy. If i were you i would take a weeks vacation until i
write again to let you know i arrived in northern canida,
But i am digressing

I want to arrange an interview. One of your better loooking females would be fine.
I'm just asking for a hearing not your lunch,
what do you say

If I'm not home slip it under the door.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2010 @ 9:57 pm

What's the difference between hating on white people and hating on any other race? There is none. Sounds to me that you just don't like the fact that your way of life is not being represented. It goes to show that you cannot make everyone happy.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 12, 2010 @ 9:05 am

Racist Bi@^&...how dare you use white in a derrogetroy way. Oh wait..I forgot your white too.....a white girl tringot be ethnic...funny..

Posted by Guest on Jun. 12, 2010 @ 10:42 am

derrogetroy? Learn to spell.

Posted by Joseph on Jun. 15, 2010 @ 9:45 am

Most gay events are mostly white and many seem to be corporation supported, they also block off the street.

Carnival, which is next to my house seems to attract a lot of whites too, it's also been known to attract people who get drunk and shoot at each other in the past.

Do only some whites, events and corporation's get this George Wallace treatment?

Posted by glen matlock on Jun. 12, 2010 @ 5:40 pm

It's true that most visible gay events are mostly white and mostly corporation supported. Lots of gay people are racist, too, and most of mainstream gay culture is centered around consumption. The gay marriage movement is about wealth, consumption and assimilation, not equality, fairness, or progressive/radical politics.

Gay people are just as bad as the rest of you, don't worry.

Posted by radical queer on Jun. 16, 2010 @ 5:14 am

Radicals have such a low opinion of 95% of their fellow citizens, and yet proclaim to speak for "the people"(tm) all the time.

Still gays seem to get a pass from the progressives when they do unprogressive things, like have gay events that are made up of mostly one race. I suppose its the world view that identity politics trumps all else.

Posted by mr matlock on Jun. 16, 2010 @ 9:13 am

Don't you all think we'd be much better off without all those awful white people and those dreadful corporations? Look at the horrible world they've built.

And no, there's nothing wrong with calling out white people as a race. White people are bad. Everyone knows that.

Posted by Guest/amcA on Jun. 13, 2010 @ 9:43 am

I am embarrassed for the SFBG for even printing this article. It's non-sensical and racist.

Posted by Patrick on Jun. 13, 2010 @ 12:11 pm

I noticed that the author did a hit and run post here, not once emerging to answer her critics above.

Lisa - have some cheese with your whine :)

Posted by Larry Nusbaum on Jun. 13, 2010 @ 7:54 pm

This opinion piece originally ran in the paper issue of the Guardian -- it's not a blog post.

Posted by marke on Jun. 14, 2010 @ 7:32 am

And by the way, folks, the point of an opinion piece is to stimulate thought, to generate discussion etc. I don't always agree with everything Tiny says -- and she isn't an employee of the Guardian and doesn't speak for the paper. But she's a smart person with a solid, legitimate point of view and she has a perspective that writers at almost every newspaper in town utterly lack. How many Chronicle writers have ever been homeless? How many of you blog posters have ever been homeless? What do most journalists really know about poverty?

And I think here overall point here was excellent: If you have money and power behind you, you can block off, control, dominate and occupy the public streets all you want, even if you create a nuisance for others. If you're a poor person, you don't have that right.

In fact, when it comes to the War on Fun, you might note that we have consistently pointed out that smaller street events without big corporate sponsorship have a terrible time getting permits.

I appreciate all the comments here, and I would remind you: That's what opinion pieces are for.

Posted by tim on Jun. 14, 2010 @ 3:39 pm

I mean - it's written in such a self-mocking style (as if it were a conservative aping PC language) that I can't think the author was serious when they banged it out.

Posted by Lucretia Snapples on Jun. 14, 2010 @ 4:22 pm

Was this written by a 16-year-old?

Posted by Doug on Jun. 14, 2010 @ 4:27 pm

"How many of you blog posters have ever been homeless?"

I stayed at Poly Tech for a couple of weeks in 1985 or so. I obviously didn't base my politics on a calling of being a professional victim, there wasn't such a call for that career choice then I suppose.

Is the author advocating people getting hoboing permits? That would be the only thing I can make of that conflation.

Cop; "this is a common begging permit, you were harassing"

Haight street thug; "All I could afford was a begging permit, with enough harassing I figured I could afford the right permit in a few weeks"

Cop; "OK I'll let you off with a warning but get a harassing permit, you probably need a 'mean assed dog' permit and a drunk and 'abusive homophobe' permit as well"

Posted by mr matlock on Jun. 14, 2010 @ 6:04 pm

As i wrote this piece i knew it would be controversial. That the sfbg printed it is a testament to their willing -ness to at least consider or create access to one of the MOST difficult issues surrounding us in amerikkka, whether we admit it or not.

Of course, next to race, is class, the other issue only barely spoken about on this stolen land called turtle island. This piece,which seemed to torment so many people, dealt with both issues, and whether you agree with my opinion or not, it is these serious issues, which according to many of the comments, doesn't even exist in relation to b2b, which illicited the firestorm of comments.

In the end, notwithstanding the anger and rancor directed at me personally, I am glad that people were made to think and talk, if even for a minute, about very real issues that undergird Everything in the US and especially in SF, increasingly made up of people with both race and class privilege.

Posted by Guest tiny on Jun. 14, 2010 @ 9:04 pm