̈ ̈Oakland is my home and I can’t imagine leaving. But it hurts to see the culture I grew up with fade away. Because when the people who built this community leave, they take Oakland’s spirit with them.¨(Villa). These powerful words said by Emiliano Villa mean that he doesn’t like seeing Oakland change and the Oakland culture leaving. He has seen Oakland change throughout time in it’s good and bad days. He does not want to leave because this is his community the community that the whole Latinx people have helped build. Based on the article that Emillino Villa wrote and many others that I have examined about the way that the Latinx community has always adapted to a changing Oakland starting with its first migration to West Oakland then their move to Fruitvale and now with gentrification the Latinx community is resisting and not going to move away from Oakland.
The first time the Latinx community had to adapt to Oakland changing was when they first migrated to West Oakland from Mexico. For example in the article History of Hispanic Culture In Fruitvale written by Azucena Rasilla, it states, “ … the first Latinx Oakland neighborhood was located in West Oakland. It was there where Mexicans fleeing the revolution of 1910 migrated to this Oakland neighborhood to build community” (Rasilla). The Mexicans that fled in the 1910 revolution they had to adapt to a whole new environment. When they ran away from the revolution they left everything behind and had to start from scratch in a froeigen country, they knew nothing about. They started adapting to Oakland by starting to take on jobs like longshoremen, workers in factories and as canneries and also got jobs with the Southern Pacific railroads. Some latinos even owned their own little business and started opening them around 7th street . “Mi Ranchito and La Bourinquena were the first Mexican grocery stores to open”. This explains that, “The heart of the Mexican Latino community was around 7th st: 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th streets, and Market Street,” (“History of Mexican and Latino Americans.” LocalWiki, localwiki.org/oakland/History_of_Mexican_and_Latino_Americans.)
In 1950s-1960s the destruction of West Oakland began the latinos were displaced once again, . Based on the graphic novel “How Did We Get Here?” written by Miriam Waldeno, it explains that the government started creating new freeways on top of many colored people’s homes, destroying them and forcing them to move out, this was called the “Urban Renewal”. They unknowingly had to move to East Oakland and Fruitvale (Walden). They once again had to start over and acclimate in East Oakland an example of them modifying was by them forming the Chicano Revolutionary Party and joined the black panther party to fight against police brutality because they both faced police brutality (“History of Mexican and Latino Americans.” LocalWiki, localwiki.org/oakland/History_of_Mexican_and_Latino_Americans) .
Now, the Latinx community is being affected again, by gentrification, but they are persisting. For example in the article “Development without gentrification? Oakland’s Fruitvale is the model report says” it discusses the changes in fruitvale and how the rent keeps on going up but the Latinx community is staying. To illustrate it reports, “Rents in Fruitvale rose a whopping 83 percent, compared to 71 percent in similar Bay Area neighborhoods and 66 percent in similar California neighborhoods,” on the contrary “At the same time, Fruitvale lost only 1 percent of its Latino population, 4 percent of its black residents, less than one percent of its white residents and gained 6 percent of new Asian residents”(Baldassari). The Latinx community isn’t going to move away from Fruitvale even if the rent is going up and is really high because that’s their home. Also since the Latinx community has been here for many years and many own their own homes so the rent going up or increasing doesn’t affect them at all. Even though gentrification is still going on it is unambiguous that the Latinx community is not going to move again because fruitvale is the heart of the Latinx community.
In conclusion, the Latinx community has survived in Oakland for several years despite the countless times they have been displaced in different parts of Oakland. The Latinx community has been through so many obstacles yet they still remain here and are not going to move away again despite that there are still people that degrade them. The idea of staying in Oakland stays inmutable to the Latinx community despite the president trying to exclude them from here.
Baldassari, Erin. “Development without Gentrification? Oakland’s Fruitvale Is the Model, Report Says.” The Mercury News, The Mercury News, 16 Apr. 2018
“History of Mexican and Latino Americans.” LocalWiki, localwiki.org/oakland/History_of_Mexican_and_Latino_Americans
This article discusses all the history and journey the Latinx went through and faced to get to Oakland. How they were displaced unwilling and how they adapted to their home no matter where they went. They found ways to accumulate and built a community.
Rasilla, Azucena. “History of Hispanic Culture in the Fruitvale Neighborhood.” History of Hispanic Culture in the Fruitvale Neighborhood, Visit Oakland, 31 Oct. 2019, www.visitoakland.com/blog/post/history-of-hispanic-culture-in-fruitvale/.
This article discusses the history about how Latinx migrated to west Oakland first, than migrated to west oakland. Then the chicanos joined the Latinx during the civil rights movement.This article is credible because it’s written by a journalist that is from Oakland. Also I am looking for information about Fruitvale in the present and this article was published Sep. 13, 2019.
Villa , Emiliano. “Gentrification in Fruitvale.” YR Media, 18 Nov. 2018, yr.media/identity/gentrification-in-fruitvale/.
This article discusses how Fruitvale is changing rapidly and how there is more and different people moving in. Also tells how Fruitvale isn’t the same anymore. If the people that built the community and brought the community together were to leave they would take the community spirit with them and Oakland wouldn’t be the same anymore.
Latinx Community by Fernanda is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.