Yesterday, October 16th was the 50th anniversary of one of the most iconic political sports images—the Black Power salute at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City. The contemporaneous response to that gesture was derision and disciplinary action. Both Gold Medal winner Tommie Smith and Bronze medalist John Carlos were prohibited from participating in any future Olympics events, both lost their jobs after returning from Mexico, and their families received death threats. Time has confirmed the power of their statement though, with the event being memorialized in film (Salute), in sculptures and at various ceremonies commemorating the event. [Read more…]
Back in the old days before Proposition 13, local schools were funded locally. School boards had the authority to raise property tax rates, constrained by the understanding that the electorate would vote them out come election time if they went too far.
In practice, this meant school districts with lower property values ended up with inferior education facilities and programs. Court cases in the 1970’s began the erosion of local control in the cause of rectifying these inequities; Prop 13 put the state in the driver’s seat.
School boards can no longer levy property taxes. They can, however, ask voters to support local funding for schools through parcel taxes and bond measures. And in the majority of cases, voters have agreed with this method of filling the holes blown through local education budgets. [Read more…]
The March for Our Lives group has collaborated with artist Sage to create a video that is a sort of mashup of Groundhog Day and a Rube Goldberg device. From the SAGE YouTube web page:
“Safe” is the debut single from the artist Sage. Sage wrote the song while in his senior year of high school after the tragic mass shooting in a high school in Parkland, Florida. He played the first version of the song for his older sister, the music artist Kesha, who instantly felt the power of the track and wanted to help the cause by lending her voice to the song and movement. Chika, independent female rapper known for her vicious flow and fearless lyrics, contributed verses to finish the song.
More at the March for Our Lives website. [h/t to AGD] [Read more…]
What to do about voting for or against judges is a thing this year. I’m hoping today’s column will answer some of the questions readers have asked in recent days.
The attention paid to Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation hearing has made a lot of people take notice of the judicial contests appearing on their ballots. At least that is what I assume is going on, having researched and/or produced a half-dozen or so voter guides since 2012.
San Diegans who have heard, read, or seen campaign materials about many candidates and propositions open up the ballot and are confounded by seeing 16 judicial contests for people they know nothing about. (There’s a seventeenth contest, and we’ll get to it further down in the story.)
Who are these people listed for California’s Court of Appeals and Supreme Court and why are we being asked to vote on them? [Read more…]
San Diego City Works Press is a project of the San Diego Writers Collective, which is a group of San Diego writers, poets, artists, and patrons dedicated to the publication and promotion of the work of San Diego area artists of all sorts. Our specific interests include local, ethnic, and border writing as well as formal innovation and progressive politics.
The Collective’s main focus is local, but we have engaged in occasional collaborations with writers from around the world. City Works Press is an all-volunteer non-profit, funded by local writers and friends of the arts, committed to the publication of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and art by members of the San Diego City College community and beyond.
Sunday, October 21, at 4:30 at Tiger!Tiger! City Works Press, in concert with Verbatim Books, is proud to present the release reading for local novelist Josh Turner and San Diego poet, Joe Medina. Fall 2018 marks 13 years of publication by SD City Works Press, and Baxt and Medina’s works continue our tradition of birthing first books by homegrown authors. [Read more…]
German far-right groups have been growing in numbers, but Germans opposed to racism and hyper-nationlism are in vastly greater numbers and continue to push back with counter-demonstrations. Organizers in Germany that are promoting inclusivity and diversity use the hashtag: #unteilbar (#indivisible in German) in recognition of the enshrinement of this principle in the German constitution. The organizers of this recent event in Berlin were expecting a turnout of around 40,000, but were amazed when participation swelled to around 240,000. Additional coverage at NPR here. [Read more…]
This week’s edition of Looking Back at the Week contains articles, commentaries, columns, and other work by San Diego Free Press regulars, irregulars, columnists, at-large contributors, and locally and nationally sourced writers on general election endorsements, Sanders stumping for Levin and Campa-Najjar, the Marriott Strike, Trojan Horse Tuck, horrible Escondido Mayor Abed, and lots of other grassroots news & progressive views from San Diego’s feisty, all volunteer, slightly funky, community news site. [Read more…]
Following the election results in Brazil has been a bit discouraging with the “Brazilian Trump”—Jair Bolsonaro—getting 46% of the votes in the first round of the presidential election. Perhaps a slight silver-lining to this dark news cloud is that thinking of things Brazilian reminded me of the fantastic 2006 video Tyger by the Brazilian filmmaker Guilherme Marcondes, inspired by William Blake’s poem of the same name. For those curious about how Brazil may be getting its own Trump, check out John Oliver’s take on Last Week Tonight. [Read more…]
From the Keb’ Mo’ YouTube page:
“My mother just recently passed at the age of 91. She was smart. She was strong. She was a leader. This video is dedicated to her and amazing women everywhere that are getting the job done.” -Keb’ Mo’
[h/t to Annie L] [Read more…]
I don’t know if there’s Blue Wave building, but I can tell you I haven’t seen such engagement and interest in an election in recent memory. This week’s activist calendar includes 36 events related to canvassing or voter education, and I know I just scratched the surface.
Another indication of voter interest is the proliferation of voter guides. Not that long ago, the term ‘voter guide’ either meant a handout from a political party or a slate mailer from a pay to play outfit.
Given that I worked on two such efforts this year, I thought I’d take a few minutes to catalog and comment upon some of what I’m seeing in the way of election-related compendiums and endorsement lists. [Read more…]
The joke is
with the slap of a stick
our original voices
into mimes [Read more…]
Here’s this week’s case of Republican voter suppression. From the MSNBC YouTube page:
AP reports that more than 53,000 residents have had their registrations on hold thanks to a policy that requires their applications to “precisely match” info from other state agencies. Reasons could be mundane as a “dropped hyphen in a last name.” 70% of the people on the list are African Americans.