Middle Schooler Tells Obama Cabinet Member That "White People Are Taking Over The Mission"

donovan-ed-lee-at-everett.jpeg
SFUSD
Well, you asked
Everett Middle School, on Church Street in the Mission District, is one of the city's most-improved public schools. It's also a hotbed of realness.

The latter was on display Tuesday during a visit to the school by Shaun Donovan, Barack Obama's secretary of Housing and Urban Development.

At the behest of Donovan and school Principal Lena Van Haren, a table-full of students were asked to opine on their likes and dislikes. You know, the usual. Muni was trod upon, of course, but then it got a little real -- a young Mission District native was asked what changed the neighborhood.

Her honest answer: white people.

Most San Francisco public school alumni can relate to the Muni problem. Budget cuts slashed the San Francisco Unified School District's bus fleet from 44 to 25 in 2010, with a full "phase-out" scheduled for next year. And pre-existing bus service was always limited: there are Everett students who live in the Sunset and Lowell High students who live in Bayview, meaning long Muni rides are a way of life for public school kids.

A pilot program giving free Muni kids to youth has been a hit this year, but if the N-Judah is rerouted or if there's a problem on the street, a whole busload of kids are going to be marked tardy.

The fact that yellow buses aren't a factor -- and transportation woes are literally a different department -- in San Francisco had to be explained to Donovan.

More obvious and not requiring explanation was gentrification, and the g-word's pale-faced harbingers.

"The Mission District, around here, has changed a lot because there's a lot of white people taking over the Mission," said a 12-year old, when asked by her principal what's changed in the surrounding area. "I used to always see Latinos in the Mission -- and, yeah."

"People are moving out of the Mission because it's getting more expensive since so many more white people are moving to San Francisco," she continued. "And that's why it's harder to get to school and black people are moving out."

Doubters out there, know this: the exchange was caught on tape. We won't identify the student except to say that she's a neighborhood native. And a perceptive one.

Donovan, for his part, missed not a beat. "That's the reason why the president and I are working so hard on affordable housing in the neighborhood, so people don't get pushed out," he said, after the tiniest of pauses.

White people: making things happen, and efforts not going unnoticed.


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52 comments
sexyadela
sexyadela

Ha ha what a smart little girl. Kudos

Gabbi9
Gabbi9

What an astute girl, hopefully they'll be able to drive the invaders out.

yeah
yeah

Wow it's almost like we live in a capitalistic society and supply and demand control rental prices. Go figure...

Guest
Guest

Calling white people, WHITE isn't racist. Poor white people being called white. :(

UncleThomas
UncleThomas

Blah blah blah white people, it's not like they represent half the country or anything.

Federale
Federale topcommenter

It sounds she and SF Weekly think that this is a bad thing?  Of course, what is the SFUSD teaching kids when they just blurt out this racist nonsense.

ag7g
ag7g

Oh, if they think it's bad now, wait 'till the Asians move in.  Zen gardens and such.  Property values will go through the roof.

karen2themax
karen2themax

Who the heck are they going to bitch about when whites disappear i wonder. Ignorant much?

truttth
truttth

it's racism plain and simple. it's parent-taught, kids aren't born thinking this way. i'm sure when there was an influx of Latino workers some of the Irish who originally inhabited the neighborhood spewed some racist filth about 'Mexicans taking over the Mission'. 

Kirsten Kruse
Kirsten Kruse

It's a racist statement but true. But the real problem is housing average earners can afford. It's the rich (white) techies that are taking over SF, hogging rental properties, and fueling a building boom of ridiculously priced condos that only they can afford. So don't blame "white people" moving into the Mission, blame Silicon Valley for making SF unaffordable for white people who don't work there, and who simply look for affordable places to live.

Kris Berg
Kris Berg

to hell with white people! they suck.

njudah
njudah topcommenter

The folks at FOX network and the talk radio shows are literally going to explode repeating this gem from one of our dears who gets Free Muni!

Galser Marcos
Galser Marcos

I didn't enjoy the mission in 1995 when it was rough, but it's a different kind of annoying now. When my parents were forced to move in 2010 because someone bought the building and was re-modeling it, there was NO WHERE to move in the mission. The prices are out of reach of working class families. That is the whole city, pretty much. So yes, the city is 'safer', but it's also turning into a Suburb, complete with no-culture and box stores.

Brian Haarmeyer
Brian Haarmeyer

Wasn't the mission originally an Irish neighborhood?? Get it right, it's techies who are taking over the mission.

MrBurbujas
MrBurbujas

she's not racist if she's observing fact. peoples' reactions here that tout racism speak to your inner thoughts that she is right, and that you feel guilty for contributing to the destruction of social fabric. sure the problem isn't neccessarily "white" people, it's people with entitlement, who think they deserve something more than the next person. And white people have historically been notorious for this, see: Native American genocide, gentrification, etc.

Joey Solano
Joey Solano

You can actually hang out an enjoy the nice weather in the mission instead of getting asked what color do you bang

Joey Solano
Joey Solano

Man who cares! It makes the mission better anyways

Pamela Miramontes
Pamela Miramontes

WHAT THAT IS RACIST, I DON'T GO AROUND, AND SAY BLACK PEOPLE, ARE TAKING OVER THE NEIGHBORHOOD, LOL. BUT IT IS, I MEAN IF YOU WANTVEQUALITY, YOU GOT TO STOP THIS SHIT, AND LIVE AS EQUALS, NO ONES BETTER THEN ANYONE ELSE. THEIR COLOR SHOULDN'T MATTER, THEIR PERSONALITY SHOULD.

Cynthia McGarvie
Cynthia McGarvie

I'll believe there's going to be new affordable housing in SF when it actually exists. I call BS on that one.

mrericsir
mrericsir topcommenter

Interesting how America still indoctrinates its youth with racism at a very young age.

Yasmina Points At Him
Yasmina Points At Him

No Tyler you are wrong. Most of the people in the Mission being pushed out are not poor, they are working class people who's quality of life is suffering because they are forced to pay exuberant raises in rent due to the influx of a certain demographic of people. This homogenous influx of people are pushing out a culturally diverse and rich array of people who have had roots in this area for many generations.

Tyler Pruitt
Tyler Pruitt

He implied the poor people being pushed out rob and kill. Why's everything always got to be about color?

Ed NB
Ed NB

Being born / raised in the Mission it has cleaned up and much safer. Don't miss the Gangs at all. Just miss the Culture it once had and hope it doesn't turn into a Santana Row / Palo Alto atmosphere . Do welcome all the people from outta town or Out of country to settle in and spend $$ though.

Keeping_It_Real
Keeping_It_Real

Wow... racist much? White people aren't the only one's with money. In fact, the majority of white people in San Francisco are of average means, poor, or homeless. Alot of the rich I've seen around here are Asian (both US citizens and non-citizens), and they're buying properties above asking price with cash. I think this kid, among others who support her and decided to publicize her ignorant statement for their own personal gain, don't like the fact that people of other races (particularly the "evil white man") are moving into the Mission and truly diversifying "their latino neighborhood". Diversity doesn't mean the complete absence of white people. Also, if rents are rising, try blaming the economy and/or the landlords. White people don't set all the rents in the city, nor do they set the majority of rents in the city. In fact, through all the landlords I've had to deal with in the city, not one has been white. And to add insult to injury, can you imagine the crap a white kid would take from "SF Weekly", among others, if she went on the record asking the US president's cabinet to help her because, "Black/Latino/etc. people are taking over the neighborhood". I mean seriously, if the president even takes this kid's racist crap seriously (beyond the usual "lip service" given just to shut her up), then I would have lost all respect for him.

Antony McGregor Dey
Antony McGregor Dey

During California's early statehood period, in the 19th and 20th century, large numbers of Irish and German immigrant workers moved into the area. Development and settlement intensified after the 1906 earthquake, as many displaced businesses and residents moved into the area, making Mission Street a major commercial thoroughfare. In 1926, the Polish community of San Francisco converted a church on 22nd Street and Shotwell Street and opened its doors as the Polish Club of San Francisco; it is referred to today as the "Dom Polski", or Polish Home. The Irish American community made its mark on the area during this time, including notable residents etymologist Peter Tamony calling the Mission home. During the 1940-1960s, large numbers of Mexican immigrants moved into the area—displaced an earlier "Mexican Barrio" located on Rincon Hill in order to create the western landing of the Bay Bridge—initiating white flight, giving the Mission a heavily Latino character for which it continues to be known today. During the 1960s, Central American immigration contributed to a Central American presence that outnumbered Mexicans in the 1960s. In the 1980s and 1990s, the neighborhood received a higher influx of immigrants and refugees from Central and South America fleeing civil wars and political instability at the time. These immigrants brought in many Central American banks and companies which would set up branches, offices, and regional headquarters on Mission Street

John Tam
John Tam

Not much different from the rhetoric you hear when Asians take over white neighborhoods with good schools

Yasmina Points At Him
Yasmina Points At Him

Russell, keep in mind before the Italians and Irish were there, there First Nations Ohlones peoples there for over 3000 years. So yeah, the moral of the story is?

thermaljames
thermaljames

Great observation on her part. Myself I've always wondered why strong liberal bastions such as SF, DC or NYC lead the way in gentrification. It seems there would be protections for long term residents who are not part of the 1% in these cities but the numbers don't show it.

Cecilia Ng
Cecilia Ng

In this thread: white tears and a severe misunderstanding of what racism actually is

Brett Roberts
Brett Roberts

Wow what a pile of garbage! I'm sorry but regardless of your skin color, if you can't afford to live in your current neighborhood then you move, it's called reality.

Paul Varga
Paul Varga

Compared to when I used to work there, I would have to see 'improvement' of that school to believe it. I remember it as nothing short of a demilitarized zone.

Jessica Brown
Jessica Brown

Huge white buses in San Francisco are overtaking little yellow buses? Pathetic!

Antonio J. Solano
Antonio J. Solano

That's kind of racist. Its actually pretty nice being around people who aren't going to try to rob or kill you.

Gabbi9
Gabbi9

@yeah Can't have capitalism without racism and sexism.

truttth
truttth

@MrBurbujas 

your definition of racism is broken. imagine if their was an influx of Latino workers and a little white girl told the cabinet market that 'Mexican People Are Taking Over the Mission' . . . it's racism anyway you like it, and I don't blame the girl, she's surely parroting something that her parents taught her. Kids aren't born racist, it has to be taught.

sexyadela
sexyadela

@Antonio J. Solano Dude with that mouth and your last name .... you deserve to be mugged 

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