Scooter protest: Activists say techies are treated better in San Francisco than the homeless

- Orange smoke billowed from scooters thrown in front of tech buses Thursday morning in the Mission District in an only-in-San-Francisco protest to decry the ills of gentrification. 

As tenant-rights activist Chirag Bhakta told the San Francisco Examiner, “it’s absurd scooters have more rights than the homeless do,” a Google employee countered that he is a San Francisco native and is allowed to live in the city.

California state senator Scott Wiener is definitely pro-housing. But he is also anti-destruction. He chimed in on Twitter: “We have real problems in San Francisco. We will solve them *only* if we work together. Trashing scooters, blocking commuter shuttles so people can’t get to work, & demonizing people because of where they work isn’t how you make positive change."

The Examiner reported that nearly 60 protesters stuck a bunch of e-scooters in front of a Google bus at Valencia and 24th streets, and planted an orange smoke grenade atop the pile.

The protest comes on the heels of Mission District sweeps of homeless encampments on April 25 at the behest of Mayor Mark Farrell, followed by sweeps of encampments large and small throughout the city.

The protesters told the Examiner the sweeps show San Francisco treats its homeless population worse than tech-enabled scooters. The City has temporarily banned the scooters from city streets starting June 4, before the beginning of a formal pilot program to allow them back slated for July.

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