Learning from Oakland

[Editor’s note: A lot of people don’t understand why municipal branding campaigns like “Ypsi Real” are destructive. We’re at work on a lengthier piece about this, but for now, we share with you a brief post by the catalytic Keep Hoods Yours collective.]


Another sign of the continuing efforts to push gentrification further into East Oakland; nobody from the East calls it “Heartlands.”

These kinds of pole banners, as seen in other areas being targeted by predatory gentrifiers, are an attempt to reintroduce working class hoods to a new audience of incoming yuppies by assigning the neighborhood a new name in order to disassociate it from its existing cultures & present it in a way that’s more compatible with the values of wealthy yuppies. These banners are literally advertisements selling East Oakland as a repackaged commodity for anyone with enough money to buy & colonize as if there aren’t already generations of relationships, families & cultures there.

If you check out the Heartland Merchants Association’s website, the people responsible for pushing for the banners, they claim their goal is to “revitalize” (gentrify) East Oakland by promoting it’s “charming shops and culture filled neighborhoods” (for culture vultures to consume, water down & appropriate) & “shopping appeal” & “vibrant business activity” that provides “a feast for fashionistas and hair-design devotees with many quaint eateries and small businesses.” Apparently even “home improvement and antique enthusiasts will find everything needed for even the most unusual projects.”

They’re kind of hard to reach, but we’ll gladly repost photos/videos of these garbage ass banners getting dissed.

#GentrificationIsViolence #Decolonize #ClassWar



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