Meet Occupy homeowner Bobby Hull

If you had any doubts about the moral imperative behind the Occupy movement, I promise that they will disappear after you watch this five minute video, made by Peter Leeman and Kyle Kehrwald of OccupyMinneapolis.  It features father, grandfather, uncle, Marine, and lifelong south Minneapolis resident Bobby Hull, who is scheduled to be evicted from his home in February 2012 by Bank of America.  To Hull, this house at 3712 Columbus Avenue is more than a home–it’s the beating heart of his family, his community, and his life.



I don’t know Bobby Hull, but I feel like I do.  I too grew up on the south side, a daughter of the working class.  My father hauled trash for thirty years, and his buddies all talk like this.  These are the kind of guys who shovel the entire street after a snowstorm, who gladly jump start your car when it freezes, who always have a couple of bucks in their wallets for you if you need it. They do this automatically, without hesitation or antipathy, because they always, ALWAYS remember the time when someone else did them same for them.

As Hull says near the end of the clip, “We’re supposed to unite.  That’s what our forefathers did, you watch my back, I got yours.  You know, we are the United States and we haven’t been united for a while.  And we need people who care about people.  We need to protect our country, whether it’s from foreign or domestic….I think right now, our fight is domestic.”


To learn more about the Hull family and the occupation that kicks off tomorrow, Tuesday, December 6, please go to OccupyMN’s Facebook page.

As Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said in 1967:

“A true revolution of values will soon look uneasily on the glaring contrast of poverty and wealth…. America, the richest and most powerful nation in the world, can well lead the way in this revolution of values. There is nothing, except a tragic death wish, to prevent us from reordering our priorities, so that the pursuit of peace will take precedence over the pursuit of war. There is nothing to keep us from molding a recalcitrant status quo with bruised hands until we have fashioned it into a brotherhood.”

7 thoughts on “Meet Occupy homeowner Bobby Hull

  1. dave

    More facts please! I sympathize with this guy, I really do, and appreciate his generous spirit of service, but videos like this never talk about how they got in over their heads (there have been a few similar videos here in Mpls. alone).

    He says that when he and his mother were making the payment it was $125/mo. (that’s only $45k over 30 years), and that if he was working he could afford $800-$900/mo. ($288k-$324k over 30 years). Without interest rates we can’t figure principal, but the original mortgage may have been for as little as $15-20k. Why wasn’t this house paid off long ago at $125/mo? How much cash equity has he taken out of the house to balloon the payment that much and put him in the situation he is in? His $800-900 payment apparently didn’t allow him to save for a rainy day, so he arguably could not afford it.

    There are plenty of people who the banks ripped off–they are the ones that deserve our help and that Occupy should be highlighting–not everybody with a hard-luck story who for all we know made less than smart decisions. If he took money out to pay healthcare costs this video might have been an effective commentary on our unaffordable healthcare system which is a truly oppressive factor for people, but the focus was the bank and we just don’t get enough facts to make the case other than one about the bureaucracy of modifications.

    Occupy should make another video with a similar sympathetic character the greedy banksters have actually screwed and explain how they did it instead of just playing the sympathy card (if there is such, let me know). That will wake people up.

  2. Pingback: Help Save Bobby Hull’s Home from Foreclosure | OccupyMN

  3. Oread

    Personally, I don’t care why they are taking his home away, because everyone deserves to have a home. Everyone. Everyone deserves somewhere to live, food to eat, education, medical care, and some effing dignity. He does not have to justify his right to a home to me, I stand with him and all the struggling members of the working class.

    1. Shannon Post author

      EXACTLY! I find it maddening that the critics of the Occupy movement seem to require that the 99% prove that they are angelic superhumans before they can have our compassion and understanding. American culture remains fixated on the idea that wealth confers moral superiority. It makes me ill.

  4. blah blah

    For anyone who wants more background, Bob had his house paid off due the the hard work of his mother. Then 4 years ago he took out a $250,000 loan against his home. Where did this money go? Why is it anyone else’s problem that he squandered his inheritance?

  5. blah blah

    Here is an interview with Bobby in which he explains that he used the lone against the house to buy _another house_!

    I personally have little sympathy for those who cash in on a paid off house so that they can go out any buy a nice lake home or Florida getaway! Lets save our pity for those who have never been able to afford a house, rather than those who had one in the clear but wanted two.

    Rule #1: live within your means
    Rule #2: If you don’t, and things go bad, please do not resort to a tactic that will cost all of us taxpayers (i.e. the inevitable sheriff / police raid to get the protesters out of the house.


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