This week’s edition of Looking Back at the Week features articles, commentaries, columns, and other work by San Diego Free Press regulars, irregulars, columnists, cartoonists, at-large contributors, and sourced writers on: the vote for minimum wage increase, Coastal Commissioner coup, grooving on a Saturday, GOP Latino outreach, toxic highways, Briggs’ response to Adams, declining South Bay enrollment, selling off SD land, women in action, and lots of other inspiring (and sometimes depressing), grassroots news & progressive views from San Diego’s friendly, neighborhood, all volunteer, slightly funky, community news site. [Read more…]
A man gazes up
Out of coyote’s fixed eyes
Howling run over
Part Five of Seven. Source: History of San Diego by William E Smythe. All quotes are from this book.
By John Lawrence / From the original San Diego Free Press, circa 1969.
After the first Indian uprising in 1775, the Spanish priests and soldiers rebuilt the mission and settled down to long decades of virtually unchallenged power. For approximately the next 75 years, San Diego was under Mission rule. The Spanish imperialists seemed to have found the solution to the “Indian problem” as we would say today.
The missionaries were so intent on “saving” the Indians that they would stop at nothing to further this goal. We quote Smythe: “Neither is there any doubt of the earnestness of the missionaries in bringing souls to Christ. They were so deeply in earnest that they did not hesitate to employ the military arm as a means of forcible conversion. There is reason to believe that whole villages were sometimes surrounded and their inhabitants driven to missions.” [Read more…]
“Free universal health care, free university, free day care, taxing and policing hedge fund millionaires—have already happened in nearly every other industrialized country in the world! And I have the evidence—and the film—to prove it!”
By Lauren McCauley / CommonDreamsWhere to Invade Next, which is said to be both his happiest and “most subversive” movie yet.
In the film, Moore travels to countries throughout Europe and also Tunisia to “pry loose from them the tools they’ve been using to make their countries happy, shiny places,” he writes, with the goal of “show[ing] millions of Americans what these countries have been hiding from us.” Such tools range from eight weeks paid vacation in Italy, to a year of paid maternity leave in Scandinavia, to women with “true equality and power” in Tunisia, to trusting prisons in Norway.
Moore, who is known for such works as Bowling for Columbine and Capitalism: A Love Story, penned an open letter to supporters last week explaining how a recent bout of pneumonia and subsequent hospital stay forced him to cancel all television appearances promoting the film. [Read more…]
I skipped the PBS Democratic Presidential debate Thursday night. I heard that neither candidate promised to kill, deport or incarcerate any group of people. What are the Democrats thinking?
Instead, we went to see Aaron Neville perform at the Balboa Theater. It was a Valentines date and well worth it. The singer from New Orleans is 75 years old and didn’t miss a note during a two-hour performance.
Today I’ll share some tips on Valentines Day, post the weekly calendar and call it done. (See you Tuesday) [Read more…]
… and the Olympic Training Center Will Transfer To Chula Vista
Two South Bay school districts might feel the financial pain if the Chargers move up North, according to The Star News. The Sweetwater Union High School District estimates that their schools have received close to $500,000 in funding from the San Diego Chargers, including for facilities and wellness programs. The Chula Vista Elementary School also says their contributions from the Chargers might go away if they leave up North. [Read more…]
By Jodi Jacobson / RH Reality Check
The media loves to obsess about—and stoke controversy around—abortion and contraception. Journalists and talk show hosts can endlessly plumb these long-simmering issues for ratings and sound bites. On the Sunday talk shows, in radio interviews, and presidential debates, politicians exclaim with abandon their support for any number of restrictions and laws, using their so-called pro-life stances to gin up their bases like matadors swinging a red cloak in front of a riled-up bull.
Rarely, however, do journalists stop to ask these politicians: Exactly what is the evidence for your position? And I have never heard anyone ask for some deeper reflection by a politician on the consequences of treating the lives of millions of people and families like so many political poker chips to bargain away at the election table.
After all, when some powerful senator blithely declares he “chooses life,” he’s not choosing to pay the medical bills for, diaper, feed, clothe, nurture, educate, and make a lifelong commitment to that child. He is leaving that to someone else who becomes a parent for the rest of their life, whether they wanted to be or not, or can afford to, or not. [Read more…]
Escondido City Councilwoman Olga Diaz, voting as the alternate for County Supervisor Greg Cox, cast the deciding vote as the California Coastal Commission sacked executive director Dr. Charles Lester late yesterday.
The 7-5 decision ended a meeting in Morro Bay that ran late into the evening. The commissioners heard impassioned pleas from dozens of witnesses saying the director’s removal amounted to a green light for unchecked development on 1,100 miles of scenic mountains, cliffs and beaches along the Pacific Ocean.
Over 20,000 letters were received by the commission, with a vast majority supportive of Dr. Lester. Billionaire environmental activist Tom Steyer delivered a petition with nearly 10,000 signatures asking the commission to “put coastal protection before the demands of special interests.” The outpouring of support apparently didn’t outweigh a letter from the Los Angeles County Business Federation, an alliance of 155 business groups, blaming the commission’s staff for a lack of accountability and regulatory overreach. [Read more…]
City of San Diego residents– look at your water bill
We were told last year that our water rates in the City of San Diego would go up on January 1st of 2016. That prompted me to look a little more closely at the most recent bill which includes December and January. This year’s bill for the winter months, when outside watering was unnecessary, broke a hundred dollars.
Yes, the rates have gone up. But in addition to the amount due other information on the bill caught my eye. [Read more…]
By South OB Girl/ OB Rag
Tucked in Liberty Station, across the street from Slater’s 50/50 Burgers, Ace Hardware, and Con Pane Bakery on Historic Decatur Road is a hidden gem of the peninsula and beach community — the Women’s Museum of California. Little did you know that in the second story above the first floor exhibit hall lies an extensive archive and collection devoted to women’s history.
Opening on Thursday evening Feb. 4th was the museum’s new exhibit, which showcases the history of the United Nations commitment to global equality and women’s issues, and celebrates the 70th year of the U.N.’s Commission on the Status of Women. [Read more…]
As cities search for solutions to homelessness, Portland’s Dignity Village offers 60 men and women community and safety.
By Marcus Harrison Green / Yes! Magazine
On a frigid January morning in Portland, Ore., a tour through Dignity Village follows the same path its residents are required to travel. All were, or are, homeless.
Newcomers to this homeless refuge huddle in the warming station, a small portable with photos of smiling former residents and where they are required to stay during a 60-day probationary period.
They hope to graduate to a small makeshift home like Karen, a three-month resident whose boisterous laugh carries through the village.
Should it become a permanent home, they may find themselves in the position of Rick Proudfoot, a longtime resident who works in the site’s main office, keeping track of finances.
If they’re really lucky, they may end up like Lisa Larson, Dignity Village’s CEO. [Read more…]
Backs Caruso Mall, Measure A
A billionaire L.A. developer came to town planning to transform one of Carlsbad’s three lagoons into a magnet for tourist dollars. After winning the approval of local officials, he encountered a group of protesters bent on preserving the lagoon the right way.
No, that’s not the story of Rick Caruso’s plan to build a shopping mall next to the Agua Hedionda Lagoon. It’s about another L.A. developer’s failed attempt to build an amusement park, Nemo’s Secret Harbor, surrounding the Batiquitos lagoon in 1972. The L.A. Times carried a retrospective story about the fiasco on March 31, 1985.
The size and scope of the 1972 project dwarfs Caruso’s. But the developer’s aim was the same, to make money off the site’s beauty while putting it at risk. There are, however, two important differences: [Read more…]
The first actual voting in the 2016 presidential primaries took place last night and the frustrations of the people manifested themselves by way of solid victories for Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders (+22%) and The Donald (+19%).
Today I’ll celebrate my one thousandth post at San Diego Free Press by sharing some observations on the implications of these victories.
The New York Times analysis of voting patterns showed Sanders winning with majorities from men, women, first-time voters, past voters, non-gun owners, middle-income people, and low-income people. Hilary Clinton won voters 65+ and households earning more than $200,000 annually. The Democratic candidates split voters in the 45-64 age demographic.
Trump carried every major GOP demographic group: men, women, young voters, old voters, high school-educated voters, college-educated voters, voters who make less than $50,000 per year and voters who make more than $100,000 per year. [Read more…]
The public is left out of the decision making, the City Council is not fully engaged
Today, Wednesday February 10, the City Council Smart Growth and Land Use (SG&LU) Committee will be asked to recommend approval to the full City Council of the marketing for sale of six City-owned properties that the Real Estate Asset Department (READ) has declared surplus and excess to the needs of the City.
Prior SDFP articles on the topic called into question the efficacy, advisability and propriety of how these properties have been declared surplus and why. We published the list of properties that was brought forward last summer as an “informational” item by READ.
Here is an update and status report with some editorializing. [Read more…]
Our controversial nuclear legacy and questions about health, truth and future risks By Nicole Hoepner Sleeping dragons. Stirring the thin blankets of secret cold-war facilities, nuclear power plants and feebly stored radioactive waste. We quietly sneak around their massive shadows. We tell our children fairy tales of mankind’s control over technology, over nature. The story […]
Declines in class sizes could be positive, especially when over 80% of students qualify as low-income or English language learners, but administrators are left constrained
By Barbara Zaragoza
While the decades-old stereotype may be that illegal aliens are fleeing over the border and saturating American schools, three districts in the South Bay are currently experiencing declining enrollments: San Ysidro, South Bay Union and National School District. Of these three, two lie directly along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Over 80% of students in all three districts are classified as either English-language -learners, low-income students, or both (also referred to as the unduplicated pupil percentage or UPP). All three also have high percentages of students classified as homeless. [Read more…]
Advocates for sexual and reproductive empowerment say the glitch was unacceptable
By Valerie Tarico / AlterNet
Ask Siri where to get an abortion and you get a list of adoption agencies. For five years that was the experience of Apple users in cities ranging from San Francisco to Philadelphia. Recent technical upgrades appear to have resolved the problem, but advocates seeking to end abortion stigma say they intend to keep an eye on Siri and her competitors.
The media called the problem to Apple’s attention as early as 2011, but until this month requests for a fix got little response other than assurances that technologies were improving. In January, Fast Company searched for abortion providers in and around San Francisco, and both Siri and Apple maps instead directed journalists to adoption agencies, including one 30 miles outside of the city. A researcher from UCSF, Alexis Hoffman, tested Apple products over the course of several months in cities across the country, and got similarly problematic results. [Read more…]
Voters in the city of San Diego will get a chance to weigh in on an ordinance providing stepped increases in the minimum wage and up to five earned sick days annually in the June 2016 primary election.
A historic wrong will be righted with public approval of the measure, implementation of which was delayed by a deceptive petition campaign financed by out of town interests whose business model depends on government assistance to their employees.
The original ordinance was approved in the summer of 2014, following months of City Council president Todd Gloria attempting and essentially failing to get business community input. Mayor Kevin Faulconer vetoed the measure. The City Council overrode the veto, 6-3, voting along party lines. [Read more…]
By Cory Briggs
I was thrilled to read in the San Diego Free Press the recent critique of the Citizens’ Plan that former City Councilmember Donna Frye and I have been promoting and that will appear on the November 2016 ballot. The critique’s author (a lobbyist and developer’s lawyer) raises an excellent question about the initiative’s effects on East Village and Barrio Logan, but he provides nothing except wrong answers that rest on a series of false claims. Responding to the critique thus gives me a good opportunity to explain some of the benefits of the initiative that have not yet received a lot of media attention.
Before debunking the specific claims in the critique, it is important to understand what the Citizens’ Plan does and does not do downtown. For starters, the initiative allows convention-center facilities, a sports facility (not necessarily football), or combined facilities within the boundaries of Imperial Avenue to the south, 17th Street to the east, K Street to the north, and Park Boulevard to the west – and nowhere else. Significantly, it includes no mandate that such development be given priority over any other development projects, offers zero guaranty that the development will come to fruition, allows the development to be done “in addition to” all other development already allowed, and requires that the development be done (if it’s done at all) “in accordance with all other applicable legal requirements.” In short, the initiative does nothing more than enhance downtown’s revitalization prospects. [Read more…]
Showdown Looms for Feb. 10th-12th at Commission Monthly Hearing
A virtual tsunami of opposition has met the move on the California Coastal Commission to oust the head of its staff, Charles Lester. The move – called “a coup” by environmentalists – is an attempt by the pro-development clique of commissioners to remove Lester who is the Executive Director.
And the move is in the middle of a key decision by the Commission on the fate of a huge development project near Newport Beach of million dollar mansions.
Oh, I had such a beautiful day the other day. It got underway with me sitting on the edge of my bed, yawning and stretching and making grunty old folk noises in rhythm with the popping of my 77-year-old bones.
With my querida gone to a mountain retreat I found myself reminiscing, remembering how, as an only child, I was often home alone.
And I would just pass the time letting my imagination fly and roam far and wide, past all the “Yee-Ha!” I had to deal with in a day – and I’d dream of a world that didn’t put up with any of that and then, depending on the mood I was in, I would often make up a little ditty about this society that was given life in my imagination. [Read more…]
(At Least For a Year)
The Romans used to provide Bread and Circuses for their populace to keep them pacified. Nothing much has changed in 2000 years. The San Diego Chargers want taxpayers to spend $350 million to buy them a new Colosseum. And they’re not really even the San Diego Chargers. They are the Dean Spanos Chargers. He owns them. The players should all be wearing “Dean Spanos Chargers” on their shirts. The Chargers merchandise should all bear his name. As we’ve seen recently, the Chargers would think nothing of “Bolt”ing to Los Angeles if the grass were greener there. But their quest for a shiny new stadium in another locale has been stymied at least temporarily.
The only team that can rightfully be called by a city’s name is the Green Bay Packers. Although not exactly owned by the City of Green Bay, the Packers have been a publicly owned, non-profit corporation since August 18, 1923. Close enough. If the Mayor wants the Chargers to stay in San Diego (that’s questionable after Spanos’ quasi-betrayal), why doesn’t he offer to have the city buy the team? Oops. That’s not possible because NFL rules forbid it. They even made an exception for Green Bay.
But seriously, folks, wouldn’t it warm the cockles of your collective hearts more if San Diego made the decision to forego professional, concussion-inducing (look what happened to hometown hero Junior Seau) NFL football whose goal is to pad the pockets of billionaires and instead spend that money solving the homeless problem and repairing infrastructure in order to indeed become a world class city? Or would it diminish your civic pride to not be able to tune into the “Dean Spanos Chargers” on TV and brag about what a great place San Diego is to live although you have to step over the homeless on your way to the game. Would you be crestfallen if you could not rent or own a skybox in a brand new multibillion-dollar Colosseum? [Read more…]
Today’s Union-Tribune interview with mayoral candidate Lori Saldaña read like a debate between the former Assemblywoman with Mayor Faulconer’s campaign manager Jason Roe. This was coverage reminiscent of the Copley era.
Rather than give Saldaña a clear shot at explaining her views and critiques (and she has plenty) of the present regime, the Union-Tribune tapped the mayoral pit bull to refute her point by point.
This reminds me very much of the old days around the paper, wherein any viewpoints counter to “everybody knows” were quickly smothered with officially blessed counterpoints. [Read more…]
In a recent interview, Naomi Klein discussed the reality facing anyone interested in promoting meaningful climate action. The “structural problem” we face, according to Klein, is that people can “simultaneously understand the medium to long term risks of climate change” and still believe it is in their “short term economic [or political] interest” to continue business as usual. This is precisely the situation concerned San Diegans face when dealing with the San Diego Association of Governments’ (SANDAG) limited vision when it comes to taking the actions needed to address the pressing threat of climate change at the local level.
As Doug Porter has pointed out here in the San Diego Free Press, given SANDAG’s history, it’s easy to be cynical about our regional planning efforts. Nonetheless, our future hopes depend on us not giving up. We must continue to push for a just, sustainable future.
Last Friday, the San Diego Quality of Life Coalition, a group of labor, environmental, social justice, affordable housing, and transit organizations representing over 150,000 San Diego County residents submitted a vision statement to SANDAG’s Transportation and Regional Planning Committee meetings for consideration as the basis for the sales tax ballot measure currently under discussion at SANDAG. [Read more…]
By Bill Adams / San Diego UrbDeZine
People know that air pollution is bad for their health, that auto exhaust emissions contribute to air pollution, and that certain cities suffer worse air pollution than others. Some people pay attention to smog reports and even avoid strenuous activities on smoggy days. What most people don’t know is that there is a certain type of auto emission pollutant that discriminates in a most predictable but unfair way. It’s also a pretty safe assumption that people aren’t fully aware of the severity of the health impacts from this pollutant.
Every year, hundreds of decisions are made in which the life and health of thousands of people are unknowingly sacrificed to this pollutant for the convenience or profit of others who are relatively safe from it. Second hand cigarette smoke, GMOs, and high tension power lines, have all captured the public attention and sparked outcries for change. When the public becomes aware of this auto exhaust pollutant and the pathology and inequality of its health impact, it is reasonable to believe they will demand a dramatic change in our transportation priorities.
To understand this pollutant and how it works, one most first understand that there are different types of air pollution – even from a single source like an automobile. Most people think of smog. Few people are aware of the more dangerous and discriminatory particulate pollution, also known as ultra-fine particulate pollution (UFP). Exposure to this type of pollution is entirely dependent on proximity to source. In other words, exposure depends on how close you live or work near a busy roadway, whether a road is expanded near you, whether your child is in a school near a busy roadway, or how much time you spend driving. [Read more…]
By Edward Hasbrouck / Draft NOtices
When the Supreme Court upheld males-only draft registration in 1981, it based its decision on “deference” to the decisions of the Department of Defense and the Commander-In-Chief, at that time, not to assign women to any combat position. The facts underlying that Supreme Court decision have now changed with the announcement on December 4, 2015, saying women in the military will be considered for all combat jobs.
Several lawsuits again challenging males-only draft registration had been filed when the Pentagon announced that it would begin considering women for some combat positions in 2013. It’s unclear which of these lawsuits, or which new one, will be the first one to be decided. But it’s now highly likely that males-only draft registration will be found unconstitutional. Such a court ruling would force Congress to choose whether to extend draft registration to women, or to let a court decision ending registration stand.
Under current law, the courts can’t order women to register. Nor can the President or the Pentagon, without action by Congress to change the law. So unless Congress extends the registration requirement to women, registration of men will have to end if courts find that it is illegally discriminatory. On the other hand, the current males-only draft registration could be ended by Presidential proclamation, by Congress, or by the Federal courts if they find that it is unconstitutional. [Read more…]
This week’s edition of Looking Back at the Week features articles, commentaries, columns, and other work by San Diego Free Press regulars, irregulars, columnists, cartoonists, at-large contributors, and sourced writers on: the hoteliers going to trial, the Iowa Caucuses, the TPP, SD water, dumping Da Bonnie, Clinton Dems, tree killers, No on A in Carlsbad, short-term rentals, the fce of SD’s homeless, border area gun buyback, Human Rights Watch FilmFest, Ed Ruscha, border artists, an opportunity for transportation justice and lots of other inspiring (and sometimes depressing), grassroots news & progressive views from San Diego’s friendly, neighborhood, all volunteer, slightly funky, community news site. [Read more…]
By Mario Lewis
“In the mid- to early ’70s my sister and I went to a Chargers game with my father. We (are) actually Raiders fans. My father, is a nice—nice-size man with some nice-size arms and everything and we were enjoying ourselves at the game and at the end of the game these four white guys were following my father out of the game calling him the n-word. Calling US the n-word, I should say.
“I was a youngster. I was maybe about 10 or 11 years old, if that. And so my father had a van and so my father, I guess he knew that he was about to get into a confrontation with ’em because they followed us all the way to the car. My father told us—he said ‘Run and lock yourself in the van.’ Right. So me and my sister ran and we locked ourselves in the van. [Read more…]
Part Four of Seven. Source: History of San Diego by William E. Smythe. All quotes are from this book.
By John Lawrence / From the original San Diego Free Press, circa 1969.
During the years 1770- 1775 the San Diego Mission, newly transplanted from Old Town to its present location in Mission Valley, managed to survive. The priests even managed to convert a few Indians.
Of course the techniques of conversion were not always the most “Christian.” Whereas Christ fed the multitudes and advocated no-strings-attached giving to the needy, the Spanish priests modified that scheme as the following quote from Smythe shows: “Those who had accepted the new faith had been clothed and fed, while those who rejected the faith had been let alone.” Nice guys, the priests: bribery was for them an acceptable method of religious inducement.
After 5 Years of this treatment, the Indians had had enough. They decided to revolt against the Spanish settlement which had imposed itself on their homeland. The first Indian uprising was on November 4, 1775, a date that should be celebrated by the people of San Diego as it marked the initiation of the people’s struggle for liberation which is still being waged today, 200 years later. [Read more…]