Berkeley for Real

by Steed Dropout
Nov. 2, 2015


So Berkeley. Photo by Ted Friedman.

A recent forum on Berkeley’s values left out Berkeley’s Southside transient bums and its Street Crazies. And oh yes, it left out Karl Marx.

Berkeley is full of Karl Marxes. You see them everywhere, slovenly, slouching. To maintain their status as Marxists, they need not fear accumulation of wealth so long as they do not control a means of production, like a factory.


Come for the culture, stay for the food is the motto of the Berkeley Visitor’s Bureau.

The visitor’s bureau would rather guide visitors away from scenes depicted in the photo. And why not? Berkeley has great business districts.

Look at that photo again. Among the filth and chaos, you can see a social melt-down, threatening any obligation the state may have to provide life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Can you see the dystopia that plays out on Southside Berkeley streets?


If you’re in off the road, one of those millennial transients who are fleeing from personal dustbowls—you head for Telegraph Avenue, and People’s Park, a food source.

Come for the culture (peace/love) of People’s Park and stay for its food, courtesy of Food Not Bombs, and scores of churches, dormitories, and individuals, who drop off such tasties as BBQ ribs, chicken, and pastries.

Berkeley’s cops are cool, and drugs and alcohol are conveniently located. It’s on you to work out a balance that doesn’t get you busted.

The culture of Peoples Park stems from its name, which has no possessive apostrophe in Peoples, because no one owns it. The Board of Regents of the University of California owns it, but that doesn’t count.

All you will know if you are encamped here is that you will be safer in a group. This makes you sociable, like your dogs.

Berkeley’s Southside is a sociable place.


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