Emeryville residents and commuters noticed a peculiar billboard along Shellmound on Thursday morning that might have caused a double-take. A 1-800-GOT-JUNK billboard that previously read “We Make Junk Disappear” was manipulated overnight to read “We Make Kids Disappear. -I.C.E.”
The message was taken as a political stance against policies of the Trump Administration amid revelations of the separation of children from their parents at border detention facilities.
Art Activist group ‘INDECLINE’ took credit for the vandalism and posted a video that showcased how they pulled off the feat. “This isn’t an immigration issue, This is a humanitarian crisis” they noted on their Instagram page.
INDECLINE identifies themselves on their website as an Activist Art Collective that was founded in 2001. They are comprised of graffiti writers, filmmakers, photographers and full-time rebels and activists. “INDECLINE focuses on social, ecological and economical injustices carried out by American and International governments, corporations and law enforcement agencies.”
The billboard was quickly fixed by Clear Channel but not before the poigant message was made and captured by the national media.
Emeryville has long been an attractive spot for political messaging because of our proximity to major highways and sheer volume of cars passing through.
The fabled Emeryville Mudflats incorporated political messaging for decades and even made an appearance in the Hollywood film Harold & Maude.
Most recently, Richmond Artist Chris Edwards chose our city to honor the victims of the Ghost Ship Warehouse tragedy with his piece. Chris recently relaunched his floating pirate ship in our Emeryville crescent after some major structural re-engineering.
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A little concerning that this article serves as an advertisement for crime in Emeryville. You’re linking their videos and Instagram page which will surly drive more traffic to them.
Why are you glorifying simple billboard graffiti as some sort of noble act? There is plenty of “activist graffiti” all over Emeryville and Oakland, why cover this one in particular?
Thanks for your comment Chuck. KTVU, KGO, SFGate … pretty much ALL the local news media covered this and even USA Today and The Washington Post covered it. If a local story makes the national media, it’s probably one we should give some hyperlocal coverage to.
Thank you Rob, I appreciate your time. The main issue I’m seeing is that you’ve mislabeled this article. I’m not able to find it in the “crime” section of your website, but rather the “social justice” section. I don’t believe advocating that citizens break the law is constructive in any way, shape or form. It is very disturbing that basic morals are so scarce these days.
Fair criticism Chuck. I updated the tag to include “activism” which may be more appropriate here. It is technically a property crime I suppose but in this case the only victim was Clear Channel.