Civil Disobedience

University of California Campuses Explode As Students Protest Proposed Tuition Hike

November 19, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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UPDATE: According to the LA Times:

A key UC regents committee moved Wednesday to hike tuition by as much as 28% over the next five years despite strong opposition from the governor, legislative leaders and students.

The regents committee on long-range planning approved the hike in a 7-2 vote after an unusual debate that pitted the state’s most powerful political leaders against administrators of the 10-campus UC system. The full Board of Regents is scheduled to vote Thursday on the proposed increase,

University of California campuses up and down the state exploded yesterday, Nov. 18th, as students protested a devastating tuition hike proposed by the UC administration.

Protests included a sit-in in front of the main library at UC San Diego – plus demonstrations at UC Berkeley, Irvine, Davis, LA.

DETAILS INSIDE, PLUS SUMMARY OF UC PROTESTS

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Stand with Indigenous Peoples, Stop the Pipelines

November 17, 2014 by Source

As so often happens, Native Americans are leading the fight to save the world.

Moccasins on the Ground workshop where participants are trained in the skills, tactics, and techniques of nonviolent direct action.By Will Falk / San Diego Free Press

While half of the world’s species are disappearing, while the remaining 48 hunter/gatherer societies are literally fighting for their survival, while 32 million acres of rainforest are cut down a year, and while three hundred tons of topsoil are lost a minute, we are again at war with those who would destroy the planet.

There have been many wars fought on behalf of our life-giving land in North America. The overwhelming majority of those killed in defense of the land have come from peoples like the Sioux, the Cheyenne, the Nez Perce, the Sauk, and the Apache. Native Americans have long stood in the way of this destructive culture.

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EYEWITNESS ACCOUNTS – Oct. 2, 1968: `A brutal massacre’ & U.S. Government’s Role

October 2, 2014 by Staff
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by Malcolm Beith / The News

Clouds loomed as night closed in. By the hundreds, the students streamed into the Plaza de las Tres Culturas. A little past 5:30 p.m., some 10,000 students – not to mention hundreds of workers, farmers and others attending in solidarity – had gathered in the square. Rain splattered down.

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Fifty Years Later: Who Really Won the Battle of Berkeley?

October 1, 2014 by Staff

As student activists return to campus to celebrate the 1964 Free Speech movement that galvanized for social justice, big questions remain about the direction of higher education since those radical days of upheaval and hope

mario-free-speechBy Barbara Garson / Common Dreams

I’m going back to the Berkeley campus this week for the fiftieth reunion of the Free Speech Movement. You may have heard in some history class about Mario Savio and the first student sit-in of the sixties. That was us FSMers at Berkeley.

It will feel a bit surreal. The university that had 801 of us arrested is welcoming us back by hanging Free Speech banners on the building we occupied. Home like a victorious football team! But it’s not a real victory because …

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Staving Off Traffic Jams Along the Information Super-Highway

September 9, 2014 by Source

Every major consumer group, a nationwide coalition of mayors, and thousands of startups and small businesses have joined millions of people in urging the FCC to save Net Neutrality.

By Timothy Karr / OtherWords

Sinistra Ecologia Libertà/Flickr

There was no vacation for the Internet this summer.

While many Americans slipped away to the beach, Internet users were busy defending the openness of a network that has become this era’s engine for free expression, ingenuity and just about everything else.

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From San Diego, LA, to New York City – Americans Demand End to Police Shootings of Unarmed Black Men In Solidarity With Ferguson

August 15, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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From San Diego to Los Angeles and across the nation to New York City, Americans of all colors rallied and held vigils on Thursday, August 14th, in solidarity with the people of Ferguson, Missouri, in their struggle against local police who shot and killed a young Black man, Michael Brown.

The common issue and demand that are uniting Americans is a call to end police shootings of unarmed Black men.

In the City Heights neighborhood of San Diego, more than a hundred people gathered to show solidarity with the people of Ferguson and with the family of Michael Brown. Organizer Kim Moore yelled out:

“Put our hands up, don’t shoot!”

This refrain has become a rallying call for those in Ferguson and in San Diego and elsewhere. Reportedly, Brown, the teenager killed by police, had his hands up before being gunned down.

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Orcas Saving Humans

August 6, 2014 by Marc Snelling
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By Marc Snelling

Oral history of orcas saving humans stretches out for a millennia.

Haida, Tlingit, Nuxalk and other peoples of the Northwest have kept stories and names alive for many generations.

For example, Natsilane being saved from attempted drowning by his jealous brothers is a Haida and Tlingit story.

Nuxalk stories of Ista and Patsallht recount traveling with killer whales and how they got their black color. K’aa gwaay, the five finned killer whale of legends is carved on totem poles such as Ts’aahl Llnagaay at the Haida Heritage Center in Kay Llnagaay (Skidegate BC).

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Glenn Greenwald in San Diego: the Leaks of Edward Snowden

June 24, 2014 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter / San Diego Free Press

Journalist Glenn Greenwald came to town last weekend to promote his best selling book based on events surrounding former systems administrator Edward Snowden’s decision to go public with documents concerning intelligence programs run by the National Security Agency. It was a most unusual evening: part lecture, part political rally and part celebrity appearance.

Seven hundred people paid money to attend a book tour event in a theater in this day and age. His publisher set up a table in the lobby and sold hundreds of copies of “No Place to Hide.”

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Reshaping the Vietnam Narrative

June 18, 2014 by Source
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The Vietnam War was a turning point in U.S. history but not as many people may think. In defeat, the national security state changed the narrative into one that made American soldiers the victims and made anti-war activists into traitors who spat on returning soldiers, as Marjorie Cohn explains.

By Marjorie Cohn / Consortiumnews.com

We came dangerously close to nuclear war when the United States was fighting in Vietnam, Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg told a reunion of the Stanford Anti-Vietnam War Movement in May 2014. He said that in 1965, the Joint Chiefs assured President Lyndon B. Johnson that the war could be won, but it would take at least 500,000 to one million troops.

The Joint Chiefs recommended hitting targets up to the Chinese border. Ellsberg suspects their real aim was to provoke China into responding. If the Chinese came in, the Joint Chiefs took for granted we would cross into China and use nuclear weapons to demolish the communists.

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Will Marshmallows Fly in OB on July 4th?

June 4, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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It’s exactly one month away from July 4th, and in the past, July 4th has meant another of the infamous OB Marshmallow Wars. But this year many OBceans hope it will be different.

Last year, the OB Town Council approved a resolution calling for no marshmallow wars for this year.

The Town Council was driven to take this position after hearing so many complaints from locals about the growing craziness of the yearly event begun in 1985 that has increasingly spread and caused more and more damage to public and private property. Many OBceans were outraged by the aftermath of last years July 4th celebration and the horrendous mess that greeted the Village citizenry the morning after. This has been an ongoing problem and issue for OB>

But the Town Council’s resolution was not a consensus of the community. We ran a poll on the OB Rag last August, and not half wanted to ban the event. Another poll found a little over half supported the OBTC’s ban. Others from the community had other ideas or didn’t think it would work, etc. In fact, the OB Rag made a suggestion last year to corral the event and allow it to become a celebrated but controlled fun-fight.

We inquired of the OB Town Council recently and its President Gretchen Newsom of just where the group is on preventing the marshmallow wars to occur.

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New Report Exposes Government Spy Network Employed Against Occupy Movement

May 27, 2014 by Source
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by Michael Steinberg / blackrainpress – Indybay.org

A report released just recently detailed a government spy network that was employed to monitor the Occupy movement “hour-to-hour” during 2011.

The Washington DC- based Partnership for Justice Fund just released an investigative report, “The Hidden Role of Fusion Centers in the Nationwide Spying Operations against the Occupy Movement and Peaceful Protest in America.” It took two years to carry out this investigation. Its principal authors are PFJF members Maria Verheyden-Hilliard and Carl Messineo.

Fusion Centers, funded by hundred of millions of dollars from the Department of Homeland Security, sprung up across the nation after the 911 attacks. Their mission was ostensibly to fight terrorism. But ten years later they made fighting the Occupy Movement their Number 1 priority.

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Memory Against Forgetting: The May 1970 Peace Memorial at UCSD

May 15, 2014 by Source
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Editor: the following is based on a speech delivered by the author, Niall Twohig on last Friday, May 9th, in front of a group of fifty gathered in Revelle Plaza at UC San Diego to unveil The May 1970 Peace Memorial. The Memorial is dedicated to George Winne, who immolated himself and died as a protest against the Vietnam War in May of 1970, plus it’s dedicated to those students who carried on the May 1970 Student Strike.

By Niall Twohig

Why a memorial for May 1970? Why a memorial for peace? Why now?

To suggest some answers, I want to ask you, the reader, to take an imaginative leap back in time to May 1970.

In order to make this leap, we have to remember that the U.S. was waging an unpopular proxy war in Southeast Asia, made all the more unpopular after the invasion of Cambodia at the end of April.

If we found ourselves transported to May 1970, this would be all too apparent. We would see the images?the aerial views of bombs upon bombs pulverizing the Vietnamese countryside, images of GIs burning huts, footage of badly burnt villagers running from the firestorm of napalm, photos of rows upon rows of mutilated bodies scattered in the fields and anonymous soldiers packed away in coffins draped in stars and stripes.

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Historic Win for Labor and New Direction in University of California System

April 22, 2014 by Source

By Daniel Gutiérrez / San Diego Free Press

La Jolla, California — On Tuesday, April 15th, UAW Local 2865, representing graduate student-workers across the University of California system, reached a tentative agreement with UC management regarding the procurement of all-gendered bathrooms and lactation stations.

UC management succumbed to the necessities demanded by UAW Local 2865, acknowledging that both all-gendered bathrooms and lactation stations are a labor right to graduate student-workers. The historic achievement was reached after the union went on strike for two days early this month, in which nearly two dozen students were arrested and many others intimidated.

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Book Review: Cesar Chavez Remembered, Warts and All

April 21, 2014 by Source

chavezbookMiriam Pawel offers the most comprehensive look at Chavez and his movement in her new book, The Crusades of Cesar Chavez.

By Mark R. Day / Labor Notes

“Cesar was not a humble man,” narrator Luis Valdez says at the conclusion of the new documentary “Cesar’s Last Fast,” about the late farm labor leader Cesar Chavez. “Nor was he a simple man.”

Indeed, Chavez was a controversial and complex figure. That’s the problem with Diego Luna’s feature film “Cesar Chavez,” whose release coincided with the charismatic leader’s March 31 birthday.

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A Review of “Cesar Chavez” the Film: Sí, Se Puede

April 3, 2014 by Source
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By Byron Morton

Cesar Chavez shows the political evolution and the struggles of the man behind the movement during the 1960s to organize the farm workers in California. Through the United Farm Workers (UFW) Chavez (played by Michael Peña) brings bargaining rights and dignity for the impoverished farm workers. The UFW motto during this time was “Sí, se puede” or yes, it is possible.

It is important to remember at that time in the 1960s the National Labor Relations Act of 1935 did not protect farm workers and others. The Act “is a foundational statute of US labor law which guarantees basic rights of private sector employees to organize into trade unions, engage in collective bargaining for better terms and conditions at work, and take collective action including strikes if necessary.”

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UCSD Grad Students Protest Controversial Employment Policy

April 3, 2014 by Source

UCSD grad students protesting.Doctoral students rally against the 18 Quarter Limit

By Daniel Gutiérrez

La Jolla, California — Students at the University of California, San Diego stormed the Office of Graduate Studies Tuesday, April 1, to protest a controversial employment policy implemented across the University of California.

The “18 Quarter Limit” restricts doctoral students by only allotting them 18 quarters to be teaching assistants, readers, or graduate student researchers. Such positions, if secured, reduce a graduate student’s tuition from roughly $5,200 a quarter to a mere $196. The action came on the eve of the two-day strike that will be held April 2nd and 3rd at UCSD.

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Snowden Nominated for Nobel Peace Prize

February 4, 2014 by Source
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Former NSA contractor named for ‘contributing to a more stable and peaceful world order’

From Alajezeera America

Two Norwegian lawmakers say they have nominated former NSA contractor Edward Snowden for the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize.

Socialist lawmakers Baard Vegard Solhjell, a former environment minister, and Snorre Valen said [last week] that the public debate and policy changes “in the wake of Snowden’s whistle-blowing (have) contributed to a more stable and peaceful world order.”

Snowden fled to Russia, where he has requested temporary asylum after leaking classified security documents detailing widespread phone and email surveillance by the National Security Agency. In some cases, the agency shared the data with British, French and other countries’ intelligence units. The files also showed that the agency spied on international heads of state, spurring a fierce debate on privacy, sovereignty and security issues.

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NSA Spy – the Most Boring Pointless Job in the World?

January 29, 2014 by Marc Snelling
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By Marc Snelling

In the ongoing international debate over NSA spying there are few voices of reason. The NSA would like you to think they are the eye on the pyramid of the great seal. An all-seeing all-knowing department of the most powerful government on earth. A division of James Bonds and Bondettes with the latest gadgetry spying on all manner of digital communication to protect the world from the scariest terrorist de jour.

On the other side of the same coin are the whistle blowers like Edward Snowden. He has now joined the ranks with Julian Assange and the Wikileaks hacktivists. They fancy themselves a gang of revolutionaries striking fear in the heart of evil government ‘leaders’, and corporate CEOs. Digital warriors, exercising their superior-hacking skills to bring nefarious secrets into the light of day. The truth is not nearly as sexy as the media, the NSA, or the hacktivists would have you believe.

In reality NSA spies are cubicle-dwelling keyboard jockeys not tuxedo-wearing international men of mystery.

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Joy Arises, Rules Fall Apart – Thoughts for the Second Anniversary of Occupy Wall Street

September 17, 2013 by Source
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By Rebecca Solnit / TomDispatch.com

I would have liked to know what the drummer hoped and what she expected. We’ll never know why she decided to take a drum to the central markets of Paris on October 5, 1789, and why, that day, the tinder was so ready to catch fire and a drumbeat was one of the sparks.

To the beat of that drum, the working women of the marketplace marched all the way to the Palace of Versailles, a dozen miles away, occupied the seat of French royal power, forced the king back to Paris, and got the French Revolution rolling. Far more than with the storming of the Bastille almost three months earlier, it was then that the revolution was really launched — though both were mysterious moments when citizens felt impelled to act and acted together, becoming in the process that mystical body, civil society, the colossus who writes history with her feet and crumples governments with her bare hands.

She strode out of the 1985 earthquake in Mexico City during which parts of the central city collapsed, and so did the credibility and power of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, the PRI that had ruled Mexico for 70 years. She woke up almost three years ago in North Africa, in what was called the Arab Spring, and became a succession of revolutions and revolts still unfolding across the region.

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BREAKING: Bradley Manning found not guilty of aiding the enemy

July 30, 2013 by Source
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By Julie Tate / Washington Post

An Army judge on Tuesday acquitted Pfc. Bradley Manning of aiding the enemy by disclosing a trove of secret U.S. government documents, a striking rebuke to military prosecutors who argued that the largest leak in U.S. history had assisted al-Qaeda.

The judge, Col. Denise Lind, found Manning guilty of most of the more than 20 crimes he was charged with. She also acquitted him of one count of the espionage act that stemmed from his leak of a video that depicted a fatal U.S. military airstrike in Farah, Afghanistan.

Bradley Manning arrived at court to hear the verdict in his military espionage and aiding the enemy trial at Fort Meade Tuesday. Manning was found not guilty of aiding the enemy.

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California Prison Hunger-Strikers Enter Third Week

July 29, 2013 by Source

Editor: The hunger strike by hundreds – at first thousands – of California prison inmates is entering its third week. One inmate has died. The strike is getting some media attention. There was a front page article on the LA Times today – Monday, July 29.

By Paige St. John / LA Times

PELICAN BAY STATE PRISON — Inside the concrete labyrinth of California’s highest-security prison, an inmate covered in neo-Nazi tattoos and locked in solitary confinement has spearheaded the largest prison protest in California history.

Convicted killer Todd Ashker and three other inmates — representing the Mexican Mafia, Nuestra Familia and the Black Guerrilla Family — called for a mass hunger strike July 8, largely to protest indefinite incarceration in solitary confinement.

More than 30,000 prisoners answered.

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Tim O’Shea Medical Marijuana Case Update – Motion to Dismiss Granted!!

July 1, 2013 by Source
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San Diego, CA – On Thursday, June 27, 2013, legal cannabis patient and defendant Tim O’Shea’s jury came out of deliberations hopelessly deadlocked in a three guilty; nine not guilty split and Judge Charles Rogers declared a mistrial.

Defense Counsel, Mark Bluemel, immediately gave an oral motion to dismiss the case in the interest of justice, which the judge delayed hearing arguments on until today, July 1, 2013. His reasoning was to allow the District Attorney’s office time to decide if they would re-file against Tim, which is their right in cases of deadlocked juries.

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San Diego’s Chalk-Gate: City Attorney Goldsmith’s Waste of Money, Gag Orders and Movement to Recall Judge Shore

June 28, 2013 by Doug Porter
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City Attorney and Judge Move Against Bank of America Chalk Protester

By Doug Porter

Things are going out of control for City Attorney Jan Goldsmith. His office’s decision to prosecute 40 year old Jeff Olson for using children’s washable chalk to scrawl protests on sidewalks adjacent to Bank of America branch offices has garnered world wide notice. And it’s not the kind of publicity the Downtown Tourism folks appreciate.

A newly organized group calling itself Liberals for Liberty has announced plans to create a chalk mural of the Constitution with focus on the First Amendment in front of the San Diego Hall of Justice. A Facebook page set up for the event calls for local artists to meet up Saturday (June 29th) at the courthouse, 330 West Broadway, San Diego.

At Change.org, a petition went up Friday morning calling upon City Attorney Jan Goldsmith to drop the prosecution of Jeff Olson for chalk graffiti, citing “an obvious abuse of power and a wasteful use of the resources of the City of San Diego.”

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Support Grows for NSA Whistleblower Edward Snowden

June 20, 2013 by Frank Gormlie
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Restore the 4th Protest Planned for San Diego in Balboa Park – July 4

Public support for NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden is growing across the country in leaps and bounds.

Already over 62,000 people – as of 10:30 am 6/20/13 – have signed an online petition in support of Snowden. The petition can be accessed here.

The online petition at RootsAction states:

Thank NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden

Our country is in the midst of a struggle between the growing surveillance state and our precious civil liberties. Now a whistleblower has boldly stepped forward to expose the National Security Agency’s vast spying on our phone records and online communications.

Explaining his actions, the 29-year-old computer expert said:

“I can’t in good conscience allow the U.S. government to destroy privacy, internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they’re secretly building.”

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Reader Rant: The “Vigilante Stop Signs” in Point Loma

June 17, 2013 by Source
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Editor: The following rant is an unsolicited article by Don Sevrens on the issue of “vigilante stop signs in Point Loma”. For earlier posts on the issue, go here, here, here, and here .

By Don Sevrens

Ever wonder why there seems to be a stop sign every two blocks whether needed or not?

The San Diego City Council has a curious policy that allows uninformed community planning groups to overrule the city’s traffic experts and, with the concurrence of one district council member, order stop signs installed.

There are no standards for collecting signatures or even telling the neighborhood what is going on. Just get a couple friends together, ask some community planner to schedule a vote and – presto! – you have new stop signs up.

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Former CIA Employee, Snowden, Blows Whistle on NSA’s Dragnet Surveillance

June 12, 2013 by Source
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By Marjorie Cohn / truthout

Just as Bradley Manning’s court-martial was getting underway, another brave whistleblower dropped a bombshell into the media: The Obama administration is collecting data on every telephone call we make. Nearly 64 years to the day after George Orwell published his prescient book 1984, we have learned that the “Thought Police” are indeed watching every one of us. “They quite literally can watch your ideas form as you type,” Edward Snowden told the Washington Post.

A former undercover CIA employee who has worked at the National Security Agency (NSA) for four years, Snowden provided a secret order of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to the Guardian. The order requires Verizon on an “ongoing daily basis” to provide the NSA information about all phone calls in its system both in the United States and other countries.

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Mayor Filner to Speak at Press Conference Against Gag Order in Federal Medical Marijuana Case – Today – Monday May 20th

May 20, 2013 by Source

Press Conference with Mayor Bob Filner

Ronnie Chang is a state legal medical cannabis patient, an alleged former collective operator and victim of the 9/9/09 raids on cannabis collective in San Diego County. A widespread and brutal attack on legal cannabis patients, the raids were part of a joint effort by the federal Drug Enforcement Administration and San Diego District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis to senselessly destroy the public safety collectives provide the community.

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Point Loma Imbroglio Continues Over “Bogus” Stop Signs After Peninsula Planners’ Compromise

May 17, 2013 by Staff
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Point Loma Planners’ Recommendation That “Bogus” Signs Be Replaced and Official Signs Removed Continues to Split Local Community

CBS8 reports that the Peninsula Planning Committee’s decision last night – May 16th – to find a compromise on the “bogus” stop signs continues to divide and rile the local hilltop community in Point Loma.

The Committee voted 4 to 3 to send a recommendation to Councilmember Faulconer’s office that the controversial stop signs that appeared and installed by anonymous parties, outside of city regulations, will be replaced – there’s 2 of them – and that 3 official stop signs in the area be removed.

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Celebrate May Day and Know Its Origins

May 1, 2013 by Source
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A Brief History of the Origins of the Modern May Day and the Movement for a 8-Hour Day

May Day Connections

By Neale Towart / Workers Online

May Day as a modern working class celebration and commemoration began from the 1886 events in Chicago where workers were demonstrating for an eight hour day. But the day already had special significance for working people before then.

PreIndustrial May Day and Working People

As a working peoples celebration its origins go back much further, with connections to Ancient Roman rituals. In pagan Europe it was a festive holy day celebrating the first spring planting. The ancient Celts and Saxons celebrated May 1st as Beltane or the day of fire. Bel was the Celtic god of the sun.

In the 1700s the Churches banned the pagan rituals, just as bosses today want workers to forget any traditions of solidarity and celebration of workers rights, but many peasants continued the tradition. Church and state were the butt of many jokes at May Day celebrations, and this certainly did not endear the craft guilds and others, who organised celebrations, to the authorities.

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Bogus Stop Signs in Point Loma Get Support From City and Many Residents

April 18, 2013 by Frank Gormlie

Not Every Resident Is Happy, However

Two bogus stop signs have been discovered in the tony neighborhood of southern Point Loma, near the Point Loma campus of Nazarene University. In July, 2012, a stop sign appeared on Jennings Street. The counterfeit signs have many supporters among local residents, and even the City signed off (no pun intended) on one of them – but, not everyone is happy.

Residents along Jennings at Albion Street and Silvergate Avenue are divided on the issue. Some say the bogus signs have made their neighborhood more safer for pedestrians, children, and walkers.

And some of them have been complaining to the City about traffic speeding through their ritzy neighborhood for over a decade. In fact, residents in 2000 asked the City to do something and allow stop signs, but the City declined, and installed a “Yield” sign. Residents also asked the City again later in 2000, and also in early 2001, and city staff deemed stop signs unnecessary.

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