Life Events

Stop Work Order on Emerson Project in Point Loma Issued by City

June 29, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
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Temporary Victory for Roseville – But Hurdles Remain

On Tuesday, June 28th, the City of San Diego issued a Stop Work Order on the controversial 40 foot structure at 3144 Emerson Street, near Evergreen.

Both Mayor Kevin Faulconer and Councilmember Lorie Zapf issued a joint statement that stated:

Further review of the Municipal Code has determined that this project does not conform to the City’s development regulations.

This is definitely a victory for Roseville, Point Loma and all the neighbors who rose up and demanded action from the City to deal with an obvious violation of the spirit of Proposition D, the 30-foot height limit that passed overwhelming in the 1970’s. Although, it is a temporary victory.

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Hunger Strike Being Organized in San Diego Against Private Prison

June 29, 2016 by Source

Private PrisonOn July 5th activists and community leaders in Southeast San Diego will begin a hunger strike to protest the private prison Corrections Corporation of America (CCA)

By Mark Bartlett

Community Leaders and Local Activists will execute a hunger strike on July 5th at 6pm next to the Oceanview Facility located at 551 S. 35th St. San Diego, CA 92113. The hunger strike will continue until all action items requested by the protest organizers have been satisfied.

Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) is the largest for­-profit prison industry in America and they currently operate three Correctional Facilities across San Diego County.

Two out of the three facilities are located in the heart of Southeast San Diego and Barrio Logan. Both centers are located in residential neighborhoods within close proximity of homes, churches, schools and businesses.

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The Homeless Artists Who Make Ocean Beach Rock

June 28, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

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Have you ever wondered who’s piling the rocks up – making artistic piles – along the entryway into OB? Have you even noticed them?

There’s these two guys – Corey and Greg – both homeless – who are making Ocean Beach rock with their rock art.

You can see it along the Sunset Cliffs Boulevard entryway into and out of OB. And Corey and Greg have been doing this for the past eight months – they told me. They work everyday, they say, 7 days a week, on their art.

Greg – the self-admitted artist of the two – figures they have completed up to a quarter of a mile of their installations. Corey agreed that it takes a lot of time just to assemble one pile.

So, it’s constant.

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Memorial Set Up for Jess Robles – Victim of Last Week’s Shooting in Point Loma

June 28, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

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A memorial has been set up for the victim of last week’s shooting near the site of the fatal encounter in the 4100 block of Voltaire Street. Flowers and personal messages were left for Jess Matthew Robles, in his mid-30’s and from Pacific Beach, on a painted utility box in front of a coffee shop.

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Last Days of the Honeycreepers and Honeyeaters – 2016 Summer Chronicles 2

June 27, 2016 by Jim Miller

ocean through jungle

By Jim Miller

There is something deeply and tragically resonant about extinction in paradise. After returning from a hike on Haleakala where I was lucky enough to have spotted a number of rare birds, I sat on the lanai of my room on the edge of the Maui rainforest and read this from Errol Fuller’s haunting book, Lost Animals: Extinction and the Photographic Record:

There are two groups of birds on the Hawaiian Islands that are notorious for the number of extinct species they contain. Although these birds are not particularly closely related, they have names that are similar and this sometimes causes confusion.

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Socks for Homeless Vets Being Collected for Stand Down San Diego

June 24, 2016 by Source
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By South OB Girl

Victor Brown, Field Representative for Speaker Emeritus of the Assembly, Toni Atkins, had his hands full of socks at Wednesday night’s OB Town Council meeting – all donated by local OBceans.

Socks for Stand Down was started in 2015 by State Assembly Member Toni G. Atkins, Speaker Emeritus, after local Stand Down organizers expressed a need for socks and underwear for homeless veterans attending Stand Down.

Under the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Stand Down events are one to three-day events providing supplies and services to homeless veterans.

Homeless veterans receive food, shelter, clothing, health screenings, dental care, VA Social Security benefits, and counseling.

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Getting Set for the OB Street Fair – What’s Happenin’?

June 23, 2016 by Staff
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Ocean Beach Street Fair and Chili Cook-Off set for June 25

It’s that time of year when thousands will flock to the annual Ocean Beach Street Fair for food, drinks, chili, live music, art and people watching – all coming down this Saturday, June 25th.

This year is the 37th annual Ocean Beach Street Fair and Chili Cook-Off Festival.

Here’s what the free one-day street festival will offer:

  • Location, location, location – 4800 to 5000 blocks of Newport Avenue from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., at cross streets of Bacon and Cable, at the OB Pier parking lot,
  • Free bike valet at the intersection of Bacon Street and Newport Avenue, courtesy of the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition.
  • Free trolley services will run for people parking near Robb Field (every 30 minutes) and on Sea World Drive at Pacific Coast Highway (every hour) from 9:30 a.m.to 9 p.m.
  • The chili cook-off and competition – Chili tastings will begin at 11 a.m. and will end when contestants run out of samples from the more than 20 tastings …
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‘The Emerson and Evergreen Project in Point Loma Is Where We Have to Draw the Battle Line for the 30 Foot Height Limit’

June 23, 2016 by Source

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City Planners Allow Developer to Measure 30 Feet From Top of Retaining Walls – the Call Goes Out to Shut the Project Down

By Geoff Page

This is it folks, this is where we have to draw the battle line for the 30-foot height limit.

Our own city, in the form of the Development Services Department, is leading the assault on the 30-foot limit. They are working for developers, not the citizens who pay their salaries. The project on Evergreen and Emerson in Roseville is a huge raspberry from the DSD to the community and here is why.

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Wild Wedding at Ocean Beach’s Wonderland

June 22, 2016 by Source
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By Jonnie Wilson

Perhaps the most unusual wedding ever to be held in Ocean Beach was that of Charles Sanders and Hazel Shaw, who said their vows on August 13, 1913, at Wonderland, O. B.’s 8-acre amusement park, which had just opened a month earlier.

The couple didn’t pick the park’s ballroom or Japanese Tea Garden as the location for their wedding as those venues would have been much too traditional.

Nor did they choose one of the park’s exciting rides, such as the 95-foot high roller coaster, to say their vows.

Clearly, this adventurous couple wanted more thrills than even that ride could provide, so they opted to perform their nuptials in the “lion’s den,” a steel arena which housed the park’s lions, leopards, pumas, and jaguars.

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An Ocean Beach Garage Repair Has Locals Steamed

June 22, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
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They’ve been doing it for years – if not decades. A local OB garage repair parks its customers’ cars and vehicles on adjoining public streets. And sometimes those vehicles sit there … for long periods of time.

Well, now, neighbors of the garage are so steamed that they have filed a complaint with the City of San Diego.

Everybody knows the Eber Street Garage at the corner of Voltaire and Eber Street in north-east Ocean Beach. And it’s Tony Calfato’s – the owner’s – habit of having his employees park the cars they are working on or that have been fixed on Eber Street, or around the corner of Lotus, or up a block on Froude.

So, nine residences have complained. Homeowners, tenants – from all the surrounding streets. They have filed a citation against the garage, have a case manager, who has been out there on site and who has taken dozens of photos.

Is anything happening?

Not really, locals say.

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OB Town Council Meeting – Short Term Vacation Rentals Presentation and Discussion – Wed., June 22nd

June 20, 2016 by Staff

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Everyone is invited to the OB Town Council meeting on Wednesday, June 22nd, to discuss Short Term Vacation Rentals in Ocean Beach, a very hot topic these days at the coast.

From the OBTC website:

Tourism to our quaint beach town helps our economy thrive, but many residents have been feeling the affect of short-term vacation rentals as fewer homes are available for affordable long-term rental.

Representatives from Save San Diego Neighborhoods will provide an overview on short-term vacation rentals, community impacts, and enforcement of current municipal code. The Town Council wants you to come and share your experience, concerns, and feedback on STVRs during the community discussion.

The meeting begins at 7:00pm at the Masonic Center (1711 Sunset Cliffs Blvd.)

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PLHS Students Awarded FDR Scholarships From Pt. Loma – OB Democratic Club

June 20, 2016 by Source
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The Franklin D. Roosevelt Scholarship Is an Annual Event

By South OB Girl

For students in Mr. Patrick McElhaney’s history classes at Point Loma High School there is an event that students have begun to look forward to every year.

The lucky students of McElhaney’s AP US History, AP European History, and American Government classes have the opportunity to attend a lavish banquet at the Bali Hai, where many students are presented with awards and scholarships. This year was the 11th year Mr. McElhaney has coordinated the event.

This year the event on June 9th included costumed Union and Confederate soldiers, presenting the flag for the pledge of allegiance, and doing a 21 gun salute (with blanks and Civil War-era guns) to honor the life of PLHS Vice Principal Mr. Kevin Gormly, who was diagnosed with brain cancer in October. Previously The OB Rag reported on fund raisers for Mr. Gormly .

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Canine Cruelty in Ocean Beach: Dogs Left in Crate in Alley – Rescued by Locals

June 17, 2016 by Staff
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Here’s a sad story about canine cruelty in Ocean Beach but it has a happy ending .

Somebody abandoned 2 dogs in a crate in an OB alley near Voltaire and Lotus – and they sat there in the heat for hours apparently. The dogs were poodle-mixes.

Fortunately for the dogs, OBcean Cynthia Salgado noticed them and kept an eye on them to see if anyone was coming for them. When no one did, Salgado got on one of OB’s facebook pages and sent out a call for help.

Within minutes, a neighbor came over to help. Channel 10 News reported that “Samantha Caan lived a few blocks away and ran over to help.” Salgado told the news:

“She came in two minutes. I just told her ‘hey, you know what, like, I need help’ and she’s just like ‘I’ll be there in two minutes.’”

Other community folks joined in and assisted the women load the dog crate into a jeep owned by Caan, that she drove over to the Animal Services on Gaines Street.

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Baseball’s All-Star Game in San Diego: Rocks for the Homeless?

June 17, 2016 by Doug Porter

anti homelessBy Doug Porter

The infamous rockscaping in and around East Village was installed as part of the city’s preparation for Major League Baseball’s 2016 All-Star game on July 12.

The wishes of the surrounding community, the supposed reason for the installation, were actually not considered.

Even as emails on the situation were made public on Wednesday by Kelly Davis at Voice of San Diego , local gendarmes were rousting homeless people who’d moved to surrounding neighborhoods as a result of the city’s actions.

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Reader Rave: ‘I contacted the City about a crosswalk at Newport and Abbott – and got action.’

June 15, 2016 by Source
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By Reid Corley

In response to an article that was written about possible crosswalks at certain intersections in Ocean Beach, which encouraged residents to contact the City of San Diego about them – I did.

As a surfer and someone who takes my daughter down to the OB Pier/seawall regularly, I see people try to cross at Abbott and Newport frequently and almost get hit by cars!

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Of Dentistry in Tijuana and Cross Border Friendship

June 15, 2016 by John Lawrence

Dr. Garcia & staff with Judy

By John Lawrence

I have been writing about my friend Dr. Luis Garcia for almost 10 years. That’s how long he has been doing my dental work in Tijuana at the Baja Oral Center.

Over the course of those years, Dr. Garcia has become much more than my dentist; he has become my friend. Way back in 2007 I had broken my front tooth off by biting into an English muffin that was hard as a rock.

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Carbon Dioxide Levels Set to Pass 400ppm — Permanently

June 15, 2016 by Source

The findings highlight increasingly urgent concerns about global efforts to curb climate change as outlined in the Paris agreement. (Photo: Mikael Miettinen/flickr/cc)

Carbon emissions and extreme weather events poised to push CO2 levels past symbolic threshold for good.

By Nadia Prupis / Common Dreams

Record carbon dioxide levels are set to surpass the symbolic threshold of 400 parts per million (PPM) this year and will likely never fall below that line again in our lifetimes, according to a new study published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change.

Scientists at the UK Met Office used emissions data, sea surface temperature figures, and a climate model from the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii to track the trajectory of CO2 levels and found that carbon dioxide “will for the first time remain above 400 ppm all year and hence for our lifetimes.”

Emissions have increased over the past 12 months due to the continued burning of fossil fuels, but the impact has also been exacerbated by an unbridled El Niño event.

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The San Diego U-T Looks at Short Term Vacation Rentals – and Still Misses Major Point

June 14, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

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By Frank Gormlie

The San Diego Union-Tribune had veteran reporter Lori Weisberg write an extended piece on short term vacation rentals in Sunday’s “SD In Depth” entitled “Opportunity or Nuisance” (June 12, 2016). Weisberg looked at the impact of short term rentals on San Diego’s housing market and wrote based on her research into who exactly was profiting “from the rise of the home sharing.”

Two of the immediate take-aways from her article are that more and more commercial rental agencies are dominating the short term market and that the available housing stock in San Diego is being affected.

Yet, she still has not focused on one of the key effects of the short term vacation rental industry: the loss of community.

Weisberg’s piece showcases Ryan Scott, who – as Weisberg explained – owns or sublets a dozen STVR dwellings and manages another 10 – many in the beach area and including Ocean Beach.

“The reality is,” he told Weisberg, “you’re leaving money on the table if you’re renting to a long-term tenant.”

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3-Level Dwelling Planned for 4700 Block of Del Mar

June 13, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
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The City of San Diego has sent out notice that the construction of a three-story dwelling unit is being planned for 4768 Del Mar Avenue in Ocean Beach. A process 2 Coastal Development Permit has been applied for by Justin Salbato for the project.

The permit calls for the demolition of a “non-habitable accessory structure”. The site contains an existing single family residence at the front of the lot, which is 0.16 acres. The new dwelling unit design includes a garage, with the unit having 2,226 square feet.

Plus – following a new trend – the new building design incorporates a roof-mounted photovoltaic system with solar panels “sufficient to generate at least 50-percent of the project’s projected energy consumption”, in conforming to the City’s new, so-called Affordable / In-fill Housing and Sustainable Buildings Expedite Program.

There appears to be several trees on the property, including a large pine tree (possibly Torrey Pine) in the back portion of the lot. It’s assumed that if the project is given the go-ahead, this tree will also be demolished.

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Is Tragedy in Ocean Beach Over the Weekend Linked to Multitude of Alcohol Establishments?

June 13, 2016 by Judi Curry
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A Tragedy Over the Weekend

A sad incident took place over the weekend in Ocean Beach. The information I have is second hand, but several people that I talked to gave me the same version of the incident.

Apparently a man was walking his dog and crossed the street at Newport and Sunset Cliffs. A man driving a jeep made an erratic left hand turn and almost hit the man.

The pedestrian, apparently scared and angry, yelled at the driver and kicked at the car. (One person told me he made contact with the car; another wasn’t sure.)

The driver swerved to the curb and pulled over and he jumped out of the car, screaming and threatening the pedestrian. The pedestrian dropped the leash of his dog and told him to run away.

The driver got back into his car, after yelling more threats. The dog was scared and as he was running away, got hit by a car.

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DA Bonnie Dumanis Loses Another Marijuana Case

June 7, 2016 by Source

Medical Marijuana Raid

Medical Marijuana Patient Dad Found Not Guilty of Child Endangerment

By Terrie Best / San Diego Americans for Safe Access

Almost a year ago this week San Diego police officers stormed past medical cannabis patient Micah Wojnowski’s organic vegetable farm in Golden Hill and into the home he shared with his teenage son and a couple of roommates.

The police entered the urban home with guns drawn on a tip from a confidential informant. They did not find what they were looking for but decided not to accept defeat. Instead, they searched Micah’s house and garage and set a stage to paint Micah as a child abuser because he is a medical cannabis patient, an industry expert and a parent.

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School Board Approves New Stadium Lights and Library at Pt Loma High

May 25, 2016 by Staff
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Tuesday night, May 24th, the school board voted to approve bright lights and other improvements to Point Loma High School which include a new library, despite opposition from some local residents.

In an unanimous vote, the San Diego Unified School District Board moved forward on the improvements,which include:

  • 7 new poles with speakers mounted at the top;
  • Four 70 foot light poles around the field;
  • four 20-foot light poles in the grandstands;
  • a new classroom building
  • a new library
  • upgrades to existing campus structures.
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On Dark Patches and Redemption

May 23, 2016 by Jim Miller
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By Jim Miller

Despite all our best efforts, things don’t always go the way we would hope. Sometimes we are stunned by the unexpected bad turn and left groping for answers.

Last week in my column about what motivated me to go on the March for California’s Future, I explained how the stories of my students inspired me:

As a community college professor at City College, I am particularly attuned to the painful realities of economic and racial inequality because I see the costs of poverty on a daily basis …

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Weekend of Progressive Politics for San Diego

May 20, 2016 by Staff

Here’s a San Diego weekend full of progressive politics – from the March Against Monsanto to all the rallies for Bernie, Hillary, Planned Parenthood and more …(Huge thanks to Doug Porter for his Progressive Weekly Calendar – which much of this was snagged from.)

March Against Monsanto Rally, March, & Festival

Monsanto-protestSaturday, May 21, 10am
Rally & March: Balboa Park Fountain (near Natural History Museum)

Followed by Festival on the lawn between La Cultural de la Raza & World Beat Center. More info: MAMSD.org

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Fundraiser for Mel Roark’s Grandson on May 22nd – Ed Harris to Attend –

May 20, 2016 by Staff
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Grandson Braden Victim of Rattlesnake Attack – Family Needs Help

Well-known OB community activist Mel Roark is holding a fundraiser for her grandson, Braden, who was bitten by a rattlesnake on April 12th. The family is facing enormous hospital bills as Braden had to take more than 35 vials of anti-venom and each one cost $2,000.

Ed Harris, the mayoral candidate, will also be on hand to show support to Mel and Braden.

This all takes place on Sunday, May 22nd, from 3 to 6 pm at The Inn at Sunset Cliffs, 1370 Sunset Cliffs Boulevard. Food, beverages, drawings and entertainment by very local John Tafolla.

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Ocean Beach Airbnb Listings Rose 64% Since Last Year

May 19, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
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New data from Airbnb shows that their short term vacation rentals listings in Ocean Beach have risen 64% since last year. This equates to 230 units, according to an article from Voice of San Diego.

The Voice article by Ashley McGlone, relies on new information from Airbnb analytics company Beyond Pricing, and says that “the number of Airbnb listings is rising in nearly every neighborhood across San Diego,”yet, “Ocean Beach and La Jolla saw the greatest gains.” (While OB had a rate of 64%, La Jolla rose to 58 percent with 404 rentals.)

And once again, Ocean Beach joined 5 other neighborhoods this year as well as last year in being the locations of almost half of all San Diego’s Airbnb listings. The other neighborhoods: Pacific Beach, Mission Beach, La Jolla, North Park and East Village.

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Annual “OB EXPOSED!” on May 20th – May 19th Is the Deadline to Submit Photos

May 19, 2016 by Staff

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Don’t be left out – ya gotta attend the annual “OB EXPOSED”- an event sponsored by the Ocean Beach Historical Society – and it’s this Friday night, May 20th.

Entitled Photographic Impressions of Ocean Beach and Point Loma, the highly-attended shindig is in the Masonic Center at 1711 Sunset Cliffs Boulevard in OB. There’s always great refreshments provided, as well as an opportunity to view old photos of OB.

And by the way, today – Thursday, May 19th – is the deadline to submit photos – and they can be submitted at the OB Business Center at 4876 Santa Monica Avenue no later than 5pm.

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The Pot Wars 2016: The End to Marijuana Prohibition in California Is Near

May 18, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
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The war on marijuana continues even at mid-point of 2016 – the year that California voters will end the marijuana prohibition in the state. While California voters get set to vote to legalize the recreational use of pot, there are good signs and bad signs around the state as the Pot Wars continue.

Right now, a majority of Californians favor legalization.

The folks who have been organizing the more successful of the legalize recreational marijuana initiatives have gathered more than 600,000 signatures, far exceeding the 350,000 needed. It’s a certainty that the Adult Use of Marijuana Act will be on California’s November ballot. This is the initiative that has support from California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom and billionaire Facebook co-founder Sean Parker. And many marijuana policy reform groups also support it.

So, what does it do?

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Having Fun Watching my Grandson Having Fun

May 18, 2016 by Ernie McCray

Ernie McCray old hippieBy Ernie McCray

The other day, for some reason, a wonderful memory rose in my mind of times when my grandson, Marlon, was dancing on the stage at SCPA (School of Creative and Performing Arts) to the hooting and hollering sounds of girls who were swooning from the very sight of him.

As I remembered those days I couldn’t help but think about how I had never experienced anything like that. Ever. I mean I’ve wondered a few times how somebody in my bloodline came out looking as fine as he does.

Since those days, he’s evolved into ML Wilson, performer, rapper, actor, a hip-hop-beat-maker. Living in San Francisco, pursuing his showbiz dreams.

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Direct Action Journal: Overcoming Fear

May 17, 2016 by Source

Hand painted sign calling attention to threat of rising sea level to South Tarawa and plea to "Save these islands!"

By Will Falk / San Diego Free Press

Another episode with anxiety knocks me to my bedroom floor. Rational thought forsakes me. My body shakes with the strangled sobs of a man ashamed of his tears. Alicia bends over me. Her dark brown eyes – normally calm with the consistent rationality characterizing her personality – are wide with concern and weariness. We’re only several nights removed from the last episode. She must think, “Oh god, not again.”

Alicia seeks to hold me. I find a deep comfort in her touch – and a deep revulsion. It’s not her. The contradiction is born from the lies fear instills in me.

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