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
Billionaires are now richer than 60 percent of the world’s population: report
The world's billionaires have doubled in the past decade and are richer than 60 percent of the global population, the charity Oxfam said Monday.
It said poor women and girls were at the bottom of the scale, putting in "12.5 billion hours of unpaid care work each and every day," estimated to be worth at least $10.8 trillion a year.
"Our broken economies are lining the pockets of billionaires and big business at the expense of ordinary men and women. No wonder people are starting to question whether billionaires should even exist," Oxfam's India head Amitabh Behar said.
"The gap between rich and poor can't be resolved without deliberate inequality-busting policies," Behar said ahead of the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, where he will represent Oxfam.
Alcohol-infused gummy bears infuriating candy giant Haribo
Ander Mendez and his friends were hoping they'd struck it rich when they came up with the idea of selling alcohol-infused gummy bears -- until they found themselves in the sights of sweet giant Haribo.
Now, these three Spaniards say they're afraid of being shut down by the German confectionery king, which is famed for its vast array of jelly sweets and was founded 100 years ago in the western city of Bonn.
In a not-so-sweetly worded legal letter, Haribo has accused their startup of infringing its trademarked little bear.
But these graduates from the northern Spanish port city of Bilbao insist they will carry on producing their "drunken gummy bears" -- "because people like them."
Threatened and endangered species among the animals hard by Australia’s bushfires
Australia's bushfires have burned more than half the known habitat of 100 threatened plants and animals, including 32 critically endangered species, the government said Monday.
Wildlife experts worry that more than a billion animals have perished in the unprecedented wave of bushfires that have ravaged eastern and southern Australia for months.
Twenty-eight people died in the blazes, which have swept through an area larger than Portugal.
Officials say it will take weeks to assess the exact toll as many fire grounds remain too dangerous to inspect.
But the government's Department of the Environment and Energy on Monday issued a preliminary list of threatened species of plants, animals and insects which have seen more than 10 percent of their known habitat affected.