A black businessman in San Francisco explained the hardships of trying to open a business in gentrified neighborhood during a new AJ Plus interview.
Vicktor Stevenson is the proprietor of Gourmonade, a permanent lemonade stand that recently opened on Valencia St. in San Francisco’s Mission District.
Stevenson said that even before opening, people had spray-painted racist graffiti on his storefront, tagging his business as “monkey juice.”
Things got worse after the opening, with four cops showing up only three days after his grand opening.
“I’m standing here at my store, trying to make sure my security system is up and running properly, and next thing I know, four cops hop out of cars on me,” Stevenson recounted.
“And come to find out, somebody in the neighborhood called and said that I was breaking into my own business,” he continued.
“I didn’t see the other two officers behind me, but the one in front of me had his hand on his gun,” he recalled.
The SFPD Mission Station is less than three blocks away, down the same street.
Describing the encounter, Stevenson was visibly shaken.
“My son is 9-months old and he knew something was wrong with daddy, and he would not let me go,” he said, tearing up. “He would not let me go all night.”
He said he wife had nightmares that night.
“I don’t think my family or any other family should have to go through this for no reason,” Stevenson concluded.
On Facebook, Stevenson urged accountability for those who call police on people of color for no reason.
“People die because of this kinda misuse of police resources and racial profiling everyday,” he reminded.
“I’m just blessed to be alive to tell my story and hopefully can help spark some major changes in how these situations are handled. It’s a criminal act and should be treated as such,” he concluded.
This is what it's like for a black business owner in a gentrifying SF neighborhood: Racist graffiti and calls to the police for unlocking your own store. pic.twitter.com/F9lVsIaKM7
— AJ+ (@ajplus) July 20, 2018
Ocasio-Cortez blasts her NYC mayor for ‘making excuses’ for NYPD violence against protesters
The youngest woman ever elected to Congress ripped her city's mayor on Saturday for "making excuses" for New York Police Department actions.
In videos that circulated widely on social media, NYPD cruisers can be seen driving into pedestrian protesters.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) blasted New York City Mayor de Blasio for defending the NYPD.
On Twitter, she told the mayor, "your comments tonight were unacceptable."
‘Light ’em up’: Police open fire on people filming them from their front porch
Video reportedly taken from the Wittier neighborhood of Minneapolis on Saturday shows authorities shooting projectiles upon people filming them from a front porch.
On Friday, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey imposed a curfew on the city, but his emergency order did not apply to citizens' homes or front porches.
Yet a video posted on Twitter shows a Minnesota National Guard humvee rolling down residential streets, followed by a group of police.
"Look at this, they just keep coming," a woman is heard saying as the camera shows the police.
"Go inside. Get inside," the police shouted.
‘They just fired on us’: Horrifying videos of cops ‘using journalists for target practice’ in Minneapolis
Journalists covering the protests in Minneapolis reported on being targeted by police on Saturday.
Multiple reports -- including live coverage on CNN -- showed police firing rubber bullets at journalists.
It’s open season on the media for the cops in Minneapolis. Evil. https://t.co/ZR3Nnf9ofH
— Nick Stellini (@StelliniTweets) May 31, 2020