Sunday, September 19, 2010

NIc Nak Redux: Just Say NO to Desley Brooks and Rebecca Kaplan

We thought readers who wanted a break from the mismanagement of the Oakland Tree Services Program, would like to hear a quick update on the Nic Nak. After a long and contentious public process that resulted in the approval of a convenience store, but the denial of alcohol sales at the Nic Nak, the owners of the Nic Nak seem to have lost steam. Their convenience store is open erratically, but mostly shuttered, fenced off and closed with little to no interaction with the neighborhood and community. From time to time someone will sell watermelons from the parking lot. Signs on the property still advertise the sale of alcohol, even though it is prohibited. Surprisingly, several days ago the billboard on the property was removed. Apparently, the Pannells have yet to sue the City as threatened at the public hearings and encouraged by Councilmember Desley Brooks. Most likely, they have not done so because their legal case has little merit. Just as Councilmembers Desley Brooks' and Rebecca Kaplan's support of the Nic Nak had little merit.

The supporters of the Nic Nak, such as Councilmembers Desley Brooks and Rebecca Kaplan, were adamant that the owners were good, law abiding citizens, who ran a clean business. There is no doubt the site is well-maintained and clean, free of graffiti, litter and weeds. Yet, despite their claims, the Pannells still seem to think the rules and laws do not apply to them. As a condition of operating the convenience store, the conditional use permit requires the Pannells to carry out several improvements including relocating portions of the fence, installing some landscaping, pulling the sign pole off the public right of way and removing the RV that is parked on site. The Pannells have made little effort to fully comply with the conditional use permit. So where are Councilmembers Desley Brooks and Rebecca Kaplan when it comes to enforcing the terms of the Nic Nak's permit since they were such staunch supporters?

Councilmembers Desley Brooks and Rebecca Kaplan suggested they would work with the Pannells and encourage them to use City programs to determine what kind of development and uses could be undertaken at the site once it became clear alcohol sales would not be approved by the City Council. It is unclear whether the City Councilmembers or the Pannells have made such efforts to date. The community would certainly be interested in a pedestrian-oriented development that takes advantage of the transportation corridors along Shattuck and Alcatraz and that had neighborhood serving uses. But not the liquor store of which Councilmembers Desley Brooks and Rebecca Kaplan were staunch advocates.

What is interesting is that two of the most ardent public supporters of the Nic Nak's application to sell alcohol in an already over-saturated liquor store market, Desley Brooks and Rebecca Kaplan, are running for election. Desley Brooks is asking her constituents to return her to another term on the City Council and Rebecca Kaplan is seeking a Mayoral bid.

If you recall, Desley Brooks intentionally accused the opponents of the Nic Nak liquor sales of being racist and sending out racist emails. She did this at two separate public hearings. When called to task on this and asked to back up her inflammatory statements through a Public Records Act request, Desley Brooks stalled, stonewalled, and then failed to respond in a timely fashion.  She had to be bird-dogged by the City Attorney to comply. After threats of litigation and public exposure, she finally complied and provided some of the emails. She conveniently left out several key emails. As expected, there was no smoking gun. Desley Brookes had intentionally misled the City Council and the public with her inflammatory accusations. Some might say she lied. One term does come to mind--ethically challenged and morally bankrupt. Certainly not someone who should be returned to City Council by the voters.

As for Rebecca Kaplan, the Pannells have posted in their window a sign supporting Rebecca Kaplan for Mayor. If you recall, Councilmember Kaplan was "ensnared in a racial dispute" http://www.eastbayexpress.com/ebx/kaplan-ensnared-in-racial-dispute/Content?oid=1737565 over the Nic Nak. Her staunch support of more liquor stores seemed to many North Oakland residents to be a quid pro quo vote swap for the support of the Oakland Black Caucus and Geoffrey Pete and a misguided effort to pander to black voters. The fact that Rebecca Kaplan has an impressive academic resume, including a BS from MIT, an MA in Urban and Environmental Policy from Tufts and a JD from Stanford Law School, did little for her in analyzing the Nic Nak fact pattern and  applying the law to the facts. Her eagerness to sell out, and her inability to see past the greedy political buy-off from Geoffrey Pete and the Oakland Black Caucus and do the right thing by denying the Nic Nak's ability to sell liquor, was shocking and revealing.  Hardly the leadership needed to steer Oakland in the right direction and certainly not mayoral fiber. Not surprising is that Geoffrey Pete has strongly endorsed Rebecca Kaplan.To this date, Rebecca Kaplan has failed to adequately explain her support of the Nic Nak Liquor Store. Just ask her campaigners why she voted to approve Nic Nak and watch them scatter.

In the upcoming election, just say no to Desley Brooks and Rebecca Kaplan. Don't be fooled by the slick packaging and glossy ideas.


Rebecca Kaplan and Desley Brooks are hardly the type of leaders Oakland needs..

23 comments:

dan said...

While I agree with the analysis in this post, I do not concur with the sentiments.

I am a strong supporter of Rebecca Kaplan for Mayor. However, I am not an apologist. I fully recognize her short-comings, but you go overboard. Just because Nic Nac is your bĂȘte noire and Kaplan was on the wrong side doesn't make her more morally-challenged than other candidates.

What you're going to tell me about Quan's great ethics or the upstanding character of Perata. Are you one of those "throw-out out all the bums" types and tell me Tuman is the way to go. What is more fraudulent than attacking Council for lack of leadership when a person has absolutely zero leadership experience.

This standard of having to agree 100% with a candidate in order to support them is completely unfair. Even if I was running for office I wouldn't agree with myself 100%. Some of my current thinking has changed from past positions. Some of my current decisions are compromises I do not fully support.

In the final analysis, Kaplan represents the best chance of economic development in Oakland while improving quality-of-life issues.

We Fight Blight said...

Dan thanks for your comments.

We have no problem with a Councilmember who does not agree with our positions. However, we do expect that they will be honest in saying why? Rebecca Kaplan, in our opinion, was dishonest with herself and with the residents of North Oakland. If there was anyone who should have been able to understand the legal issue here it was Kaplan. The combination of a urban planning and law degree should give her the tools to know what the law and policies required and whether Nic Nak was consistent with the law. The fact that she failed to adequately explain her decision and the fact that she refused to even meet with the lead appellant or even respond to his emails asking her to explain her position were to say the least disappointing. However, the fact that she would support more liquor stores when the community and the neighbors showed that the area was already over-saturated with liquor stores and that she would support more liquor stores in the face of overwhelming local, state, national and international studies that show concentrations of liquor outlets pose public health and safety problems is disturbing to us. She threw the neighborhood under the bus with her support of more liquor stores so that she could get the support of Geoffrey Pete and the Oakland Black Caucus. Frankly we expected more of her. Her actions related to Nic Nak reveal alot about her character and political naivete.

We like Tuman's platform and he makes a lot of sense. However, we agree that he is untested politically. Jean Quan, well the City of Oakland is near financial ruin and Jean is the Chair of the Finance Committee. We also think she is an apologist for crime. That says enough. Don Perata has lots and lots of baggage. But at the end of the day we think Oakland voters will likely vote Perata in because they are desperate for someone who is not on the Council.

Is he the best candidate for the job? We could think of better candidates, but they chose not to run.

So is the promotion and support of liquor stores a good economic development strategy for Oakland? Maybe Rebecca Kaplan can answer that for us, or maybe not.

dan said...

We Fight Blight, I find your response to my comment to be fairly intellectually dishonest.

When you say "we" are you speaking for some group, some imaginary idea of the Oakland electorate, or is it the royal use of the word? It is pretty hard to tell who you are representing when you use anonymous accounts.

Then you shift to "Oakland voters will likely vote Perata." Well does that mean YOU personally are supporting Perata? If so, can we discuss the relative merits of our chosen candidates?

If you are just making a prognostication instead of actually taking a stance, why should anyone take you seriously. I think Oakland voters will likely vote Perata also, but I take a public stand in support of Kaplan.

Finally, your attempt to summarize Kaplan's economic development strategy as support of liquor stores is completely unfair. Support of one particular store is not universal support of all stores. You purposefully omit all of her other economic development policy including easing zoning requirements, cutting red tape and improving IT, transit oriented development, etc.

Fight Blight said...

Dan,

We Fight Blight does not represent anyone other than the ideas we post here in our blogs. We do so to encourage open discussions about issues that affect North Oakland and South Berkeley. We have been roundly criticized before for being anonymous. We think people should focus on the merits of the ideas represented here and not whether we are Democrats or Republicans, white or black, young or old, female or male, gay or straight, rich or poor. Too often people focus on a person's background, and make assumptions about their ideas because of their background rather than focusing on the merits of their ideas and the validity of their arguments.

The prognostication about Perata is just that--a prognostication that has been often repeated in the press. Did you miss our statement that we believe there are lots of better candidates who are not running for Mayor. We have yet to take a stand on which of the remaining candidates to support because we, like many other voters, are not happy with the choices--Rebecca Kaplan included. We certainly will not be voting for Jean Quan or Rebecca Kaplan for Mayor.

We have not summarized Rebecca Kaplan's support of Nic Nak as her economic strategy. Voters can get that summary from her campaign website. We have, however, posited the question as to whether her support of liquor stores is part of her economic development agenda for Oakland. She has not answered. As most politicians on the wrong end of vote will do, she is trying to distance herself from the Nic Nak debacle rather than taking it head on and explaining her decision to support yet another liquor store in North Oakland.

We want voters to remember both Rebecca Kaplan and Desley Brooks support of Nic Nak when they go to the polls because her support of Nic Nak and the manner in which she failed to adequately explain why she would vote for yet another liquor store says a lot about her leadership capabilities or lack thereof.

So can you explain what you believe to be intellectually dishonest about our response to you.

Thanks we appreciate your comments.

Anonymous said...

If your sole criteria for choosing who to vote for in this election is one liquor store, you've become obsessed by your own pet cause.

This city faces many more important challenges than the reopening of a liquor store that had never been cited for any violation of any kind.

Yeah, pretty much gotta agree with Dan on this one.

Fight Blight said...

Anonymous, I think you miss my point here totally. It is the not outcome of voting for one liquor store, it is how she arrived at her decision and the lack of any rationale basis for doing so other than the perceived desire to win the support of the Oakland Black Caucus. In essence a vote swap.

And then Kaplan's complete inability to explain her decision except for a lame, rambling apology at a public hearing, made it even worse. Not to mention her absolute refusal to meet with the lead appellant or even respond to his email requests for an explanation. I find it interesting that some supporters of Kaplan are so enamored with her image as a progressive lesbian that they are willing to completely ignore the fact that she voted to support yet another liquor store in North Oakland using a rationale that had no basis in planning theory or legal precedent, despite the fact that that the City Attorney came out with a legal opinion at a public hearing saying the Nic Nak could not be approved and if Council did so it would get overturned in court.

Still Kaplan's response in supporting the Nic Nak was that the City Attorney failed to provide any citings for his decision. Duh--there were no citings to support the fabricated rationale of historic relevance because it was unprecendented and had never been used in Oakland or any other City and hence there were no court cases. It was a complete misapplication of the laws. This was easily researched using Google searches.

This brings into serious question Kaplans motives. Either she isn't really as smart as she portrays herself to be and simply didn't get it, even with the help of the City Attorney, or she got it and then voted to support another liquor store because she wanted the support of the Oakland Black Caucus in her Mayoral bid and essentially cut a deal with Jeffrey Pete. When called on it by astute North Oakland residents, Kaplan was totally uncomfortable and never adequately explained her position.

That is not the type of person we want to lead Oakland.

Councilmember Kaplan, if you and your supporters are reading this blog, we invite you to respond and explain to the public exactly why you rejected the City Attorney's legal opinion and voted to support the Nic Nak Liquor Store. We would also ask you to explain why you voted to support the Nic Nak liquor store despite widespread community opposition and the fact that a wide range of studies carried out throughout the United States and internationally all show that concentrations of alcohol outlets cause higher incidences of crime and social problems. We also invite you to explain why you refused to meet with the lead appellant or even respond to or acknowldedge his email requests to explain your decision.
Anonymous, leaders don't run from difficult issues and they don't run from their past decisions. They either explain themselves or acknowledge they made a mistake. W

Anonymous do you think we will get a response?

Fight Blight said...

Anonymous, I think you miss my point here totally. It is the not outcome of voting for one liquor store, it is how she arrived at her decision and the lack of any rationale basis for doing so other than the perceived desire to win the support of the Oakland Black Caucus. In essence a vote swap.

And then Kaplan's complete inability to explain her decision except for a lame, rambling apology at a public hearing, made it even worse. Not to mention her absolute refusal to meet with the lead appellant or even respond to his email requests for an explanation. I find it interesting that some supporters of Kaplan are so enamored with her image as a progressive lesbian that they are willing to completely ignore the fact that she voted to support yet another liquor store in North Oakland using a rationale that had no basis in planning theory or legal precedent, despite the fact that that the City Attorney came out with a legal opinion at a public hearing saying the Nic Nak could not be approved and if Council did so it would get overturned in court.

Still Kaplan's response in supporting the Nic Nak was that the City Attorney failed to provide any citings for his decision. Duh--there were no citings to support the fabricated rationale of historic relevance because it was unprecendented and had never been used in Oakland or any other City and hence there were no court cases. It was a complete misapplication of the laws. This was easily researched using Google searches.

This brings into serious question Kaplans motives. Either she isn't really as smart as she portrays herself to be and simply didn't get it, even with the help of the City Attorney, or she got it and then voted to support another liquor store because she wanted the support of the Oakland Black Caucus in her Mayoral bid and essentially cut a deal with Jeffrey Pete. When called on it by astute North Oakland residents, Kaplan was totally uncomfortable and never adequately explained her position.

That is not the type of person we want to lead Oakland.

Councilmember Kaplan, if you and your supporters are reading this blog, we invite you to respond and explain to the public exactly why you rejected the City Attorney's legal opinion and voted to support the Nic Nak Liquor Store. We would also ask you to explain why you voted to support the Nic Nak liquor store despite widespread community opposition and the fact that a wide range of studies carried out throughout the United States and internationally all show that concentrations of alcohol outlets cause higher incidences of crime and social problems. We also invite you to explain why you refused to meet with the lead appellant or even respond to or acknowldedge his email requests to explain your decision.
Anonymous, leaders don't run from difficult issues and they don't run from their past decisions. They either explain themselves or acknowledge they made a mistake. W

Anonymous do you think we will get a response?

Anonymous said...

We Fight Blight - I respect and admire your passion and commitment to making your neighborhood better. Had it not been for your blog, I wouldn't have even known about the Nik Nak saga, and I think that even though it may seem like a trivial issue to some, it illustrates some much bigger problems in Oakland, and with Oakland politicians. After following the saga, I have the same concerns about Kaplan as you do. I do wish you would identify who you are, however.

MarleenLee

Anonymous said...

Sorry, but you're not making a convincing argument. You assume Kaplan did something you disagree with in a calculated and nefarious move to get votes, but there's just no evidence there. This sinister quid pro quo in your post rides on a single word - "seemed". As in, it seemed to you like there was a quid pro quo. You offer no evidence, and your assumption relies on ignoring everything but a thin rationale. In truth, there are lots of reasons she could have voted the way she did, not the least of which is the reason she actually offered.

I'd call the EBX article on the subject balanced, and in it Kaplan does explain her decision, something you claim she hasn't or can't do. Legal decisions rely on precedent, not opinion, and Russo's brief (which you nor I have seen all of, by the way) doesn't provide precedent. It's fairly basic: if your claim is that the basis of a decision will get overturned in court (as is Russo's argument), you make that case by citing precedent. Russo didn't do that. He offered an opinion, and Kaplan and Brooks disagree with it. We'll see who is right if it goes to court.

What you don't explain is your opposition to this store. It isn't a crime magnet and has been a stable business in the neighborhood for 35 years. You can argue that the neighborhood doesn't need any more liquor stores, but that's very different from arguing against this particular store. Why not put your efforts into shutting down one of the stores that's actually a problem? Is it merely because this one is convenient?

And what's with this "we" business? Is there a quorum posting your responses here? Or do you just prefer to imply that you represent the views of a larger group? I would be surprised if more than one person posts at this blog (at least in anything more than a token way), and I'm confident that it is the same single individual posting over at ABO. I am 100% certain, however, that there is no "we" writing posts, just a single "I".

We Fight Blight said...

Thanks Anonymous@7:41 pm. We appreciate your comments.

First of all there are many, many posts discussing the issue related to the Nic Nak liquor store. Go back and read some of the more salient posts to get our rationale for why we opposed having another liquor store in North Oakland/South Berkeley.

Second of all, we do not purport to represent anybody other than the ideas we articulate as a way to generate discussion on topics important to our community. So whether we is I, or we, or us or a thousand of us, is totally irrelevant. We Fight Blight comments on many topics on various blogs. So what? Focus on the ideas not on who you think we are or who you think we represent. That's part of the problem of Oakland politics and the state Oakland. Trying to fit people into neat little categories so we can judge the person and not focus on the merit of their ideas.

Nic Nak will not be going to court because the owner does not have the resources to fight the City and he is on shaky legal ground. But of course he has the right and if he chooses to do so and can actually find an attorney to take his case before his appeal period is over, we will then see how the courts rule given that there is no precedent for the fabrication of "historical relevance" as it relates to non-conforming uses and variances. The laws and legal rationale for variances is well-established in court cases throughout the US.

The best person to clear up the entire matter about her vote on the Nic Nak liquor store is Rebecca Kaplan. We have invited her to post a response on this blog. Let her tell her side of the story. Isn't that what we expect of our leaders, that they show up, they become engaged with their constituents, debate issues, explain their votes and take responsibility for the consequences of their votes? Or have we set a far different standard with the likes of Ron Dellums as Mayor?

Isn't it time Rebecca Kaplan stop pretending to be a leader and actually show the community she is leader and face the issues and her constituents?

Anonymous said...

The best person to clear up the entire matter about her vote on the Nic Nak liquor store is Rebecca Kaplan. We have invited her to post a response on this blog. Let her tell her side of the story.

So her responses elsewhere aren't enough for you? What makes you think she has an obligation to come to your blog to post about an issue that most people have moved on from 4+ months ago?

Again, her response as reported in the EBX article you link to is quite fair. You are welcome to disagree with it, but don't expect her to rehash this because you demand it.

I've not seen anything on this blog other than speculation about a nefarious vote trading scheme that just doesn't hold up to any rational or factual analysis. As far as reasons why you're targeting this store in particular, you still haven't provided one (or I'm yet to find it on your blog). What reason other than convenience can you offer? I'm all ears on both of those subjects.

My issue is not with who you are or your ideas, it's with your misguided use of pronouns. The ideas would be the same regardless of pronoun, it's true, but the implication of "we" is very different than they are with "I". Besides - it's silly. Your idea that you should refer to yourself as the royal we - an idea you're putting out that is just as relevant as your position on Nic Nak - makes you seem full of yourself and hard to take seriously.

Anonymous said...

I'm with WFB on both the issues in this comment section.

You'll notice I am anonymous, as well. The reason being that I also am a professional in a profession where my private opinions are judged as relevant to my workplace performance. If you are too old to have never had an employer "Google" you during the interview process (or a potential landlord do the same), you probably wouldn't understand the power of the internet in opening and closing doors.


And as for Kaplan's behavior during the NikNak meetings, I was more bothered by her lack of leadership and behavior at the meetings, than which side she chose.

Passive aggressiveness isn't a quality I look for in a leader. We need people who will make a decision and defend that decision with logic and fairness. She could do neither.

BuppieMBA said...

Demographically, I should be the ideal Kaplan supporter and I realize that I am not going to agree with any one candidate 100% but Ms. Kaplan has never explained to any reasonable satisfaction her Nic Nak vote. Absent an explanation, this black male finds her vote a clear cut attempt to pander to black voters. It is distasteful. You then add her behavior during the Meserhle verdict and you really start to wonder where she stands.

On any given day, I float somewhere between Tuman, Perata, and Kaplan and unless someone can make a compelling reason for me to vote for one of them now, I will most likely be making a game time decision. Each one of the aforemention individuals has attractive and unattractive features; I just wish I could find a candidate who I can call most attractive instead of least unattractive.

My own word on the street Kaplan and Perata are your top dogs with Tuman giving people to think about the unknown untested quantity.

I'm saying NO said...

All these anonymous comments by a person who is clearly a disgruntled NicNak supporter are hilarious. Truly. You say Kaplan doesn't have to explain herself to us because she's "moved on", yet you won't go back thru WFB's posts to get the synopsis of the NicNak issue? Hypocrite much?

You are touting all the other so-called "accomplishments" Kaplan has achieved as the at-large and admonish WFB for being myopic in their assessment. That's really funny. I don't need to see anything else about her record. It doesn't matter what else she's done, because I have zero tolerance for the kind of self-serving deceitful behavior she engaged in with regard to the NikNak issue. And if she's done it once and it worked for her, she won't hesitate to do it again. The bottom line is that Rebecca Kaplan could have chosen to come down on the side of the law and do the right thing by voting to uphold the appeal and deny NikNak the ability to sell liquor. She instead chose to do the exact opposite and voted to allow yet another liquor store in an already over-saturated North Oakland neighborhood. She did indeed abandon the opportunity to serve the greater good (our neighborhood) in order to take the self-serving path by selling out to Pete and his cronies in exchange for their support in her run for mayor. When called on it and asked by various residents to justify her position, she opted for the ignore tactic, hoping that if she pretended we didn't exist, we and our annoying insistence that she justify the unjustifiable, would simply go away. Or perhaps it is that she sees herself as beyond reproach and doesn't have to answer to any of us. Whatever her rationale, she has to know her behavior spoke volumes about her lack of character or integrity, and the type of "Dellums v.2" mayoral tenure we can expect if she is elected.

I have no respect for her at all. She is in it for what she can get, not for what she can do for Oakland. However, she can't have her cake and eat it too. If she wants our votes, she damn well better answer to us when we ask for clarification on this issue or any other, and that does not include some spun & sanitized "interview" picked up by EBX. that's called "transparency in government". Perhaps she (and Desley Brooks, whose behavior during the NikNak case was both shocking and shameful) should Google it?

Thank goddess Kaplan doesn't have a snowball's chance of winning. My info is that Perata and Quan are the front runners with the others trailing by various percentages.

Anonymous said...

I walked down shattuck and alcatraz this morning and his sign pole is not in the way of pedestrians, in fact the pole is on his property with a room to spare. You must really have a vendetta against him.

Fight Blight said...

Thanks Anonymous October 13,

Several things to consider here. First, while the pole itself does not encroach on the concrete sidewalk, the sign upon which it is attached does encroach into the airspace of the public right of way. The City can and has approved signs that encroach into the airspace above the public right of way. When the city approved the convenience store it did so under a conditional use permit. The use is conditioned upon the property owner meeting certain requirements. In this case, the pole sign was the subject of a permit condition from the City. The property owner and his supporters were very vocal during the review process that they were good neighbors and followed the laws and City requirements. Well, in this case, the law and City requirements are embedded in the conditional use permit. Compliance of the conditional use permit is mandatory, not discretionary on the part of the owner. Nothing having to do with a vendetta as you suggest and everything having to do with holding the property owner accountable to his word.

Anonymous said...

So if bought a building that had a sign that there for 40 years I would have to remove it for a conditional use permit? He is not asking for a change in the building? Why are you treating this as if it was new construction ? Maybe you don't have a vendetta, maybe your just straight up jealous. There's no need to bash on Kaplan and Brooks because they didn't jump on your band wagon. I like the person who said " you are throwing stones and hiding your hands"

Fight Blight said...

As we have noted on this blog multiple times, because the property owner closed the liquor and convenience store for the better part of 5 years, his use as a convenience store is considered to be a new application and he must meet all current land use and design requirements. Free standing pole signs have significantly greater restrictions on them than they did 40 years ago. We are not jealous of Mr. Pannell, we simply want him to meet the conditions of his permit. As we noted, we do not believe Kaplan should be elected Mayor and Brooks should not be given another term as a City Councilperson. We hold no punches here and do not shy away from issues. If that's a problem for you, sorry. But the blog is intended to provide a forum for the public to discuss openly, honestly and respectfully issues of blight, crime, development and the mismanagement of the City. Thanks

Ricardo said...

We fight blight, I understand why you remain anonymous. You don't want to get your ass beat. If I was hiding behind a blog talking mess I would do it to. You are pathetic, and a hater. You probaly don't have anything yourself therefore hate and become jealous on people like Mr. P. Oh and one more thing....... racism still exist .......

Fight Blight said...

All we can say is that you should read our blog more carefully. The answers to your questions are found within. Racism still exists. There is no doubt about it. But you really should stop using racim as an excuse for your failures. Really? In this day and age it is a sorry, tired card, played far too often in Oakland.

We do not want more liquor stores because they are bad for the neighborhood. Period. So where is Mr. P now with his convenience market and providing vegetables and fruit to the "community" and being a "pillar of the community". Haven't seen him or his family in months. Looks like he was all about selling liquor at the expense of the community...Time for you to move on Ricardo. This neighborhood is changing and for the better.

Ricardo said...

"So where is Mr. P now with his convenience market and providing vegetables and fruit to the "community" and being a "pillar of the community". Haven't seen him or his family in months."

Mr. P most likely closed because due to operating cost therefore barely turning a profit.You know, things things you need in everyday life. (gas, tuition for family, medical bills, insurance,) You can not survive by just selling fruits and veggies. You need to have other things that will cover certain cost example PG&E, water, etc.

Ive seen him and his family on that lot where the hell have you been looking at?
My failures?? WOW you are really full of yourself

I do not understand how is this neighborhood changing for the better. You mean changing for a certain class and type of people.

Overall I just have this crazy feeling something really isnt right about this blog.

Fight Blight said...

Thanks Ricardo. We appreciate your comments, though we do disagree with your tenor. We do like how this neighborhood and North Oakland is changning. Change is good. Change brings new people, new ideas, new cultures, new investment and new businesses. The neighborhood is changing for the better because there are now a significant number of residents who are not afraid to stand up to more liquor stores, gang violence, drugs, crime and anti-social behaviors. There are even more people who are invested in their community and willing to spend time and energy improving it and making it safer. This includes people of all ages, races, creeds genders and ethnicities. Don't be afraid of change. Embrace it. The fight over Nic Nak is over. Accept it and move on.

Anonymous said...

Can we all say scare tactics..... lol!!