But he hasn’t even been nominated yet… Former backers of GOP candidate Rick Santorum have released a memo sent to delegates bound for the GOP convention later this month that calls for RNC delegates not to vote vote for Mitt Romney, even if they are bound to him. Calling themselves “Jews and Christians Together,” the group briefly gained notoriety back in March for their connection with robocalls in Ohio that accused Romney of supporting “open homosexuality in the military, the appointment of homosexual judges, and the ENDA law, making it illegal to fire a man who wears a dress and high heels to work, even if he’s your kid’s teacher.” Website Buzzfeed.com reports that “Jews and Christians Together” is the brainchild of Steve Baldwin, former head of the Council for National Policy, a low-profile, well-connected conservative group. The memo was reportedly sent out to 20,000 people in politics and the media, as well as RNC delegates. [Read more…]
At no cost to taxpayers!… Unlike other visions for San Diego (a football stadium and Convention Center expansion come to mind), Dale Steele and Catt White are making their plans for a City Public Market along the lines of Seattle’s Pike’s Place, San Francisco’s Ferry Building and Barcelona’s La Boqueria into a reality via crowd source funding on the internet’s KickStarter. As of July 2012, KickStarter has 4,048 projects funded and has raised a total of $241 million in start-up capital.
Both Steele and White are long time players on the San Diego market scene; White currently manages neighborhood farmers’ markets in Little Italy, North Park and Pacific Beach. They have already leased a 92,000 square foot property near Petco Park and are renovating more than two acres of warehouse space. Plans for the market include two days a week with farmers’ stalls, booths with local crafters and artists, music festivals, movie nights and quinceañeras, chef’s tasting events and art exhibits, along with the occasional Chaldean Festival, Chinese New Year’s parade, Filipino fiesta or charity fundraiser. [Read more…]
My daughter is dying.
“Oh, oh, I’m so sorry!” You are stunned. You clutch your heart.
Of course you are sorry, but my daughter is dying.
“How terribly sad for you,” and you fall silent, uncertain what to say.
But it’s more than sad. My daughter is dying a slow and frightening death.
“Oh, dear,” you comfort, “that is so tragic.” And you thank your god it’s not your child.
But it’s worse than tragic, even worse than that. My daughter is so young, so beautiful, and she is slowly dying before my eyes.
“Oh, there is nothing more painful than a parent losing a child,” you repeat from somewhere. But you don’t really understand. [Read more…]
Combination of Public and Private Funds Fueling Construction Boom in East County City
You can’t go from one end of Lemon Grove to another without seeing the telltale signs of a virtual construction boom. There are so many construction projects going on right now in this East County city of 25,000, just 10 miles east of downtown San Diego, that you’d think the recession was over and things were … well, rosier than they are.
Yet in Lemon Grove, there are half a dozen construction projects in process, exhibiting the fact that both public and private money are at work here. And on top of that, city officials broke ground yesterday at a ceremony welcoming yet another project – the promenade and park centered around the city’s primary trolley station, just next to Main Street and Broadway.
Let’s take a quick look at all these projects.
At the southwest corner of the very busy Massachusetts and Broadway intersection, Walgreen Pharmacy is financing a new facility. I spoke briefly to superintendent Andy Dipalma of Savant Construction while inside his trailer. Being somewhat distrusting of strangers wandering through his site, Andy told me that the new pharmacy should be completed in September of this year. He estimated that the project employed about 45 people – bringing jobs to this sector of the economy. [Read more…]
A group of activists have announced plans to protest City Councilman and mayoral candidate Carl DeMaio’s plans to march (entry #81) in Saturday’s Gay Pride parade. A Facebook page entitled “Turn Your Back on Carl DeMaio” has attracted nearly 300 commitments to join in the event as of 6 am today. The announcement says:
Carl DeMaio has turned his back on the LGBT community; it’s our turn to Turn Our Backs on him. This Saturday as Carl’s contingent passes by, Turn Your Back to him. Let’s give photographers, videographers, and the media something to talk about: The fact that we won’t support someone who won’t support us!
Large Poster Sign graphics and flyers are currently being made. Final renditions will be put up for a vote for favorite(s) to be printed. If you would like to donate to get these materials printed and ready for the Pride Parade this Saturday or have Slogan Ideas, contact Jase at email@example.com. We love community support! Thank You!
July 17, 2012 – In the wake of seven cycling deaths during the past week in Southern California, including two San Diegans, local bikers are gathering on July 25th in Balboa Park to call attention to local conditions that make biking hazardous. Cyclists Theodore Jones and Angel Bojorquez, who were killed in collisions with vehicles in La Jolla and Rancho Santa Fe respectively, will be remembered at the 4pm gathering by the Balboa Park fountain. Cyclists will chalk outlines of bodies on adjacent sidewalks until 4:30 p.m. and then ride to City Hall.
This protest comes after an earlier event back in April, triggered by the deaths of cyclists David Ortiz and Chuck Gilbreth. Organizers want the city to answer and be held accountable for what they say are flawed roadway design and high speed limits. A Facebook page announcing the protest says the message is: “The people who are dying on our streets are not inexperienced or reckless bicyclists, they are careful, experienced riders who are dying from no fault of their own and we demand immediate action toward to goal of safer roads for all users”. Cyclists are being encouraged to bring bells & whistles “so the City knows we are there”.
by Mel Freilicher
In the furor of attempting to clean out my disastrously cluttered home office before school starts again, I came across a recent issue of the National Education Association’s magazine dedicated entirely to teaching Darwin. Before tossing it, I read some astonishing and depressing statistics about the high percentage of Americans who disbelieve in evolution (including, if I recall correctly, about 25% of those with a college education, and more than 50% of those without one). Mostly that issue detailed how teachers might use the mass of scientific evidence from a wide array of disciplines to make the case for Darwin.
That this case still needs to be made is in itself bizarre, of course, since “The Origin of the Species” was published in 1859. It can’t be accounted for simply by the many home-schooled children of fundamentalists, or by graduates of Christian academies such as the chain that unsuccessfully brought litigation against the UC system a few years back for not accepting their creationism course as a legitimate science entry requirement. Even before the right wing’s aggressive and sustained push to control local school boards, many public schools in conservative regions had been teaching evolution– as a thoroughly discredited theory; I vividly remember one student (she’s now a science writer!) from a small, predominantly Mormon town in northern California who was totally shocked when she came to UCSD, and learned that such debunking was hardly a universally accepted truth. [Read more…]
July 11, 2012- One of San Diego’s largest employers is headed for financial and legal troubles that could have a serious impact on the region. Bridgepoint Education took a bath in the stock market Monday, losing one third of its value and continuing downward on Tuesday. Over the past year the company’s stock price has dropped by more than 50%. This week’s sharp drop in value at the stock exchange happened after its flagship school, Ashford University, was denied accreditation by the Western Association of Schools. The upshot of this ruling is that the company will need to relocate hundreds, perhaps even thousands, of employees out of the San Diego region.
The for profit education company depends on the status of the Ashford campus to give it credibility with its on-line students, who make up 99% of its enrollment, and the financial organizations that loan them money for tuition. Standing in the way of certification is Bridgepoint’s drop out rate; of the nearly quarter million students enrolled over the past four years (2007-2011), 127,879 withdrew from the school. Also troubling for the Western Association was the fact that the school spends 31% of its operating costs on recruitment, well above the amount it spends on actual instruction or student services like job counseling. Just 22% of Ashford students graduate; the actual campus in Iowa has a mere 1,000 students taking classes, 85,000 are studying online. [Read more…]
Former longtime Penn St. football coach will be going to prison presumably for the rest of his life.
Jerry Sandusky, the longtime defensive coordinator and onetime heir to Joe Paterno’s job, was convicted last Friday on 45 of the 48 counts that were brought against him for child sexual abuse and related charges. At 68 years old, Sandusky—who has yet to be formally sentenced—will likely die in prison where he belongs. It’s not enough. The punishment, sadly, does not fit the crime. He won’t live long enough in confinement to adequately pay for the suffering and humiliation he brought on those 10 boys he raped…..the 10 we know of. [Read more…]
North African & Mideast Conflict Resolution Delegation visits San Diego; Looks for Answers and finds more Questions
Clearly the vetting process at the State Department needs some updating from the Google dartboard they must be currently using, I thought to myself a little over a week ago, last Friday. After all, the last rumor I heard about the OB Rag / San Diego Free Press staffers was we were all under investigation by Homeland Security for our Occupy Movement support. But unlike some other thoughts I have, at least there was a basis for this one.
You see, late Friday afternoon I received an e-mail from a representative of the State Department. I nearly deleted it thinking it was going to be some tragic soul who knew of my trustworthiness and wanted to use my bank account to deposit tons of money, and in return, he would let me have several million dollars. Generally, the delete key is used at this point, but I was curious. I opened the e-mail. When I saw I was addressed by title and name, my second thought was perhaps it was time to get a clean toothbrush and wait for my ride to Guantanamo Bay. It is strange and paranoid time in which we live. But I read on.
June 25, 2012 – Seven thousand members of the San Diego Education Association, a group you’re probably familiar with as the “teacher’s union” starting voting on a new contract yesterday and already questions are being raised about the fairness of the voting process. The vote is to decide whether to approve a tentative revision of their contract with the San Diego Unified School District that calls for teachers to defer scheduled pay raises in order to save the jobs of nearly 1,500 district employees facing layoffs due to the District’s ongoing budget crisis. Teachers will be given five unpaid days off, with 14 more furlough days to be added if Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposal to raise taxes fails at the ballot box in November. The SDUSD Board of Trustees voted to approve the contract last Thursday.
The Breakfast Club Action Group, a dissident bloc of teachers which has actively campaigned against the agreement, complained on Sunday via a blog post and email that many SDEA members were being disenfranchised by the requirement that they vote in person within a three-day window ending Tuesday. They also pointed out that a basic security measure SDEA has taken with paper ballot elections in the past has been discontinued for this election. [Read more…]
By Kelly Mayhew / Special to San Diego Free Press
Vilification of teachers belies the hard work and preparation it takes to educate our children.
Counter to many parents and education reformers, my husband and I are staunch supporters of not only public schools, but of public school teachers. As a community college instructor myself—a professor of English at City College—I recognize the challenges facing folks who devote themselves to serving everyone who walks through their doors. They do this because: a) public schools, unlike charters and privates, can’t turn any kid away; and b) most teachers I know believe in the mandate that we should serve everyone. [Read more…]