Photo by Carlos Pedraza | Jasmine Segura, Xochitl Cabra Sanchez, and other organizers attend the meeting.

El Jardin Santuario faces a series of hateful attacks

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by Carlos Pedraza

Editor’s note: In print El Jardin Santuario was only referred to as “Centro del Pueblo’s community garden,” and “Arcata community garden.”  This article and headline have been edited to address the garden by its name.

 A community safety meeting was held on Saturday Aug. 27, where organizers from Centro del Pueblo and Cooperation Humboldt discussed the recent attacks. The first one was hate speech written on the garden stop sign, the second a week later when anti-Semitic flyers were left in the garden. The most recent attack was when someone cut down corn stalks growing in the garden, grown from seeds brought from Mexico by Adan Cervantes, an immigrant and the head gardener.   

The organizers have spoken to Arcata police, who told them of a person of interest with connection to neo-Nazi groups in the area. According to Centro del Pueblo organizers, the police have also promised to send an extra patrol to check the garden during the night. 

The police offered a donation of surveillance cameras for the garden but were refused. 

“We wanted to have control over the surveillance, not the police to have control over the surveillance,” said Jasmine Segura, the Volunteer Coordinator of Centro del Pueblo. “Also, we don’t want surveillance during the day.” 

Segura believes the police do have good intentions but she describes working with them as a double edged sword, since the garden is considered a safe space and is used by the unhoused. 

The majority of the meeting was discussing fundraising $5,000 to fund the cost of setting up cameras. Humboldt students and locals came together to pitch ideas: from a silent auction, to food trucks, and legal concerns like food permits. There was a general sense of cooperation with students and locals all volunteering to look into food permits and to speak to artists and businesses asking for donations. 

Photo by Carlos Pedraza | Cal Poly Humboldt student Hannah Deshais speaks on up coming community events.

Humboldt resident and member of the Peace and Freedom party Hannah Deshais decided to volunteer after hearing about the attacks.

”I feel hopeful this has started something beautiful from something hateful,” Deshais said.

Deshais stated she would continue to support the garden through volunteering and pushing her party to be more involved.

After the meeting, a few people, including children, stayed behind to do work in the plots, digging out weeds and attending to the vegetation. 

“This attack, it’s like a reminder to us that our work here is not done,” said Xochitl Cabra Sanchez, the Community Outreach Coordinator with Centro del Pueblo.

El Jardin Santuario will be holding a fundraiser on Sep. 24 and a free jiu-jitsu self-defense class on Sep. 11, with people of color being offered the class first.

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4 Comments

  1. Henchman Of Justice Henchman Of Justice Thursday, September 8, 2022

    Whether or not sociopolitical prejudice is involved, this kinda crap is over the line… it typically is youths or somebody with personal control issues, can’t rationalize time, place and manner… if it is so important to make a point, that point went undiscovered with the unreasoning behavior…

    … and not to take lightly, the popo optically appear like reverse brown-nosing undiplomats who throw out melodrama not strong enough to lift a finger nail off the desktop for a name…but hey, outreach that goes too far… unless ya have a suspect in custody or a warrant for arrest, APD looks weak-cheese…

    > [The organizers have spoken to Arcata police, who told them of a person of interest with connection to neo-Nazi groups in the area.]

  2. Frumboldt Frumboldt Thursday, September 8, 2022

    Well I just have to say IsReal? Maintains a special status as a religious ethno state that basically practices apartheid but members of that religion own all the media ( which purports in all its mythos that religion is fake news, just not theirs cuz theirs says the whole world is their chattel property and they are the big man up tops most favorite tribe) and banks ( who print debt laden money and sell it to the world ) and own 90 percent of all the intellectual property and made all the esoteric legal structures ( while locking down the slave boat game and drinking hot chocolate at Lloyd’s) that made usery the biggest industry in the world. Yeah maybe he has some lost point somewhere.

  3. Certified Killers Inc. Certified Killers Inc. Thursday, September 8, 2022

    The answer to wannabe fascist is not to ask for help from certified killers.

  4. Steve Jackson Steve Jackson Thursday, September 8, 2022

    The only real threat to freedom isn’t the ideas of people but the rise of totalitarianism and social conformity through the use of authoritarian policies. If this human had shown up at a rodeo and written aweful things about Christian settlers in the American west he would be a hero right now. Has is this different? All u have to do is Examine our current social battlefield. Basically this is more rise of authoritarianism, as distasteful to the conformists world as his actions are this is a perhaps troubled but none the less free human expressing their political views in a non violent fashion, no matter what is said about free speech it is not violence. Violence is violence, public speech and simple acts of politically motivated defacement of public facing parts of the system of authority are acts of rebellion against the conformist ideology everyone else possesses and therefor are simple propaganda on a personal level and we allow plenty of that in our global corporate sector, if this message was chewed up by Disney and spat right in your skull by being placed in your favorite imaginary world created in computers you would repeat it like a parrot while u watch western civilization slip in to darkness cuz you think chaos is cool. [I agree. Hail Eris DISCORDIA]

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