Politics

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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Reader Rant: “Don’t Vote for Kevin Faulconer Because He Has Repaired 300 Miles of Roads”

June 7, 2016 by Source
Thumbnail image for Reader Rant: “Don’t Vote for Kevin Faulconer Because He Has Repaired 300 Miles of Roads”

By Geoff Page

If you are going to the polls today and are thinking of voting for Kevin Faulconer because he has “repaired” 300 miles of roads, as he is telling everyone, he has been successful in fooling you.

This doesn’t mean you are not smart, it just means that paving is not something you know much about and you think this is true because of all the new black streets and new stripes. I’ve been in the construction business for 43 years. I know paving and the mayor is not being honest.

The vast majority of what has been done is called slurry seal. This is not a “repair,” slurry seal is a maintenance operation designed to prolong the life of good asphalt. It is something the city should have been doing all along.
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Militarization of San Diego Police Bubbles Up in Mayoral Race

June 6, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Militarization of San Diego Police Bubbles Up in Mayoral Race

Ed Harris Criticizes Police Management for Ordering “Storm-troopers” to March into Barrio Logan

The race for San Diego’s mayor just became a little more relevant and interesting over the weekend – mere days before the California Primary.

In a debate Friday night on NBC San Diego, mayoral candidate Ed Harris made comments critical of the way San Diego Police were utilized after the anti-Trump protests on May 27th at the Convention Center. Police with riot gear were ordered into Barrio Logan and made over 30 arrests in a massive display of militarization. Many have criticized this action by police and Chief Zimmerman – including this writer.

During the debate, Harris said:

“It’s not responsible, it’s not respectful marching into Barrio Logan when people come out of their house because they hear the storm troopers coming down the street.”

By Sunday, the San Diego Police Officers Association was fuming and called on Harris for an apology in referring to their members as “storm troopers”.

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It’s the Primary – Progressives – and Time to Vote!

June 6, 2016 by Doug Porter

ballot box san diegoProgressive Primary Voting Guide for San Diego

Endorsements by OB Rag and San Diego Free Press

By Doug Porter

If you haven’t voted in San Diego yet, now is the time to get focused, and I’m here to help.

While there are many candidates and issues on the ballot, let me remind readers that a Yes vote on Proposition I will have the most immediate impact locally. More than 170,000 hard-working San Diegans will get a badly needed, overdue raise and access to five earned sick days a year.

What I hope to do here today is offer one-stop shopping for those of you just getting around to making your ballot box decisions.

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Good Things Progressives Can Do Down-Ballot

June 6, 2016 by Jim Miller

Pro-Tip: Start at the Bottom of Your Ballot

Down-Ballot

By Jim Miller

While most of the attention is on the Presidential race this primary season, there are still some important things progressive voters can weigh in on down-ballot here in San Diego on June 7th that will do some good.

Here is a short list:

Vote Yes on Proposition I: Sure, $15 an hour is coming soon in California, but voting yes on Proposition I in San Diego will immediately lift the local minimum wage to $10.50 an hour (and eventually $11.50), giving a well-deserved raise and providing five much-needed sick days to over 170,000 hard working San Diegans. It will also right the wrong that was done by Mayor Faulconer and the Chamber of Commerce crew when they screwed local workers out of this necessary hand up.

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Did San Diego Police “Overreact” During Anti-Trump Protests or Did They Simply Follow “The Zimmerman Plan”

June 3, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

Trump SD protest FG cops diners 3-ed 2

Is it true that San Diego Police overreacted during the anti-Trump protests in downtown last Friday, May 27th, or did they simply follow Chief Zimmerman’s plan to corral demonstrators and push them into Barrio Logan where they could make arrests – arrests made out of the lens of the national media?

I attended the protests and was downtown for about 6 hours that day a week ago. The following observations and opinions are my own. What I did see and experience has led me to believe that the police manipulated the anti-Trump protesters in order to declare an illegal assembly – which then gave them the authority to make mass arrests – arrests police made largely out of sight – and in the ethnic Chicano- Mexican-American community of Barrio Logan.

Knowing that the police had earlier announced that they were setting up two separate “free speech zones” – one for the Trump supporters and one for the anti-Trump protesters – …

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San Diego ACLU Seeks Public Records Related to SDPD’s Militaristic Tactics at Trump Rally

June 3, 2016 by Source

Trump SD protest cops why

Many San Diegans dismayed at the City of San Diego’s unprecedented response to public protest

By ACLU – San Diego / June 2, 2016

In response to the community’s objections about San Diego Police Department’s unprecedented show of force at last Friday’s Trump Rally, the ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties sent a letter early today requesting public records from the City of San Diego concerning SDPD’s operations.

Along with Alliance San Diego, the American Friends Service Committee, National Lawyers Guild, and Union Del Barrio, the San Diego ACLU has been responding to community members’ questions and complaints in the aftermath of what community leaders believe was an unacceptable show of excessive force by SDPD against peaceful protestors.

Citing the California Public Records Act (CPRA), the ACLU is requesting the following information:

  • How many officers? The number of and specific law enforcement agencies and special units, including plainclothes officers, who were dispatched or who in some capacity participated in responding to the protests;
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A Football Stadium in East Village? Not so Fast

June 3, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for A Football Stadium in East Village? Not so Fast

by American Institute of Architects San Diego / San Diego UrbDeZine / May 31, 2016

At first glance, the recent East Village Convadium proposal has many appealing qualities: it is an attractive, modern complex with many interesting features. However, the Charger’s owners hope to capitalize on the recent trend in California and use the ballot initiative process to “expedite” California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) review, and for good reason. The flash and hype of the ballot initiative covers many significant, unanswered questions about potential cost overruns and environmental impacts that may cost San Diego taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars.

Like many San Diegans, the American Institute of Architects San Diego (AIASD) would like to see a NFL franchise remain in San Diego. However, our 900 member organization is dedicated to advancing good urban planning and design in San Diego, and we have many concerns about the current Convadium proposal. We also feel it is critical to remind San Diegans there are better alternatives.

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Free Speech and Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Campaign at SDSU

June 2, 2016 by Source

Open Letter From SDSU Staff and Faculty Regarding Naming and Targeting of Students

sdsuThe following is an open letter sent to President Hirshman from the undersigned staff and faculty at San Diego State University regarding flyers posted on the university campus in April. The flyers listed the names of seven students from Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) and the Muslim Students Association (MSA), accusing them of “Jew-hatred” and of being linked to “terrorists.”

They were singled out because of their support of the boycott, divestment, sanctions movement (BDS), which is used as a means of holding Israel accountable for human right violations against Palestinians. The letter touches on the broader implications of the flyer incident, whereby the naming and targeting of students represents a marked escalation of wide-ranging efforts to suppress the growing momentum of BDS campaigns across American campuses.

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OB Green Activist Calendar for June 2016

June 2, 2016 by Source
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June 9th Thursday 7 p.m. Film Night “The True Cost” at OB Green Center

June 11th Saturday 9:00 am – 11:00 am Dog Beach Clean Up

June 11th Saturday 11:00 am – 2:00 pm OB First Responders Appreciation BBQ

June 14th Tuesday 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm OB Woman’s Club monthly meeting

June 16th Thursday 7:00 p.m. OB Historical Society Meeting – History of the OB Rag

P.L. United Methodist Church, 1984 Sunset Cliffs Blvd, 92107. Learn the history of the OB Rag by current OB Rag Editor Frank Gormlie.

COME INSIDE FOR DETAILS AND MUCH MORE ….

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Robert Reich: Advice for Divided Democrats

June 2, 2016 by Source

Robert Reich 02

Plus: Bernie’s Policies Are the Answer to the Rise of the Far-Right

By Robert B. Reich / RobertReich.org

With the Democratic primaries grinding to a bitter end, I have suggestions for both Clinton and Sanders supporters that neither will like.

First, my advice to Clinton supporters: Don’t try to drum Bernie Sanders out of the race before Hillary Clinton officially gets the nomination (if she in fact does get it).

Some of you say Bernie should bow out because he has no chance of getting the nomination, and his continuing candidacy is harming Hillary Clinton’s chances.

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Obama Administration Approves Resumption of California Offshore Fracking

June 2, 2016 by Source
Thumbnail image for Obama Administration Approves Resumption of California Offshore Fracking

By Dan Bacher

Claiming that fracking poses “no significant impact” to the environment, Obama administration officials on May 27 finalized their plans to allow oil companies to resume offshore fracking and acidizing in California’s Santa Barbara Channel.

The announcement from the two agencies responsible for oil drilling, the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management Management (BOEM) and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), ended a court-ordered settlement placing a moratorium on offshore fracking and acidizing for oil in the fish and wildlife-rich federal waters off California.

The two agencies reported they have completed a comprehensive environmental analysis evaluating the potential impacts from the use of “well stimulation treatments” – acidizing and fracking operations — on the 23 oil and gas platforms currently in operation on the Outer Continental Shelf offshore California.

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OB Latino Possible Victim of Local Nazi Vandalism

June 1, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for OB Latino Possible Victim of Local Nazi Vandalism

Channel 10 News is running a story about somebody carving racist and nasty messages into freshly poured concrete in Ocean Beach – near the residence of Juan Viella, a five-year resident.

The messages were racist and political and were signed “OB SS” – “SS” being a Nazi reference.

Here are the messages that Viella found (WARNING: vulgarity approaching):

Trump 2016,” “F*ck Bernie”, “Build the wall,” “No F**s, OBSS”

Viella has since scraped most of the hateful messages off the concrete on Lotus Street near Sunset Cliffs .

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San Diegans Condemn Militarization of Barrio Logan by Mayor Faulconer and Chief Zimmerman

June 1, 2016 by Source

By Alliance San Diego

 

Phalanx of San Diego police confront lone citizen on Harbor Drive

(Photo by Gabriela Martínez Córdova)

Editor: Following last Friday’s anti-Trump demonstrations at the San Diego Convention Center, local police and other law enforcement agencies descended on Barrio Logan in an unnecessary show of militarized force, corralling a community and making over 2 dozen arrests. This is a statement in response by Alliance San Diego. After the statement, we publish an update by Doug Porter from today’s San Diego Free Press.

Community leaders were shocked by the unwarranted show of force that law enforcement used during the peaceful rallies and marches that took place on Friday May 27 in response to the visit of the presumptive Republican presidential nominee.

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Ocean Beach Landlord Michael Mills Targeted by Tenants’ Rights Activists

June 1, 2016 by Source
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OB Residents to Protest Mills’ Outrageous Rents at Saturday June 4th Rally

By San Diego Tenants United

San Diego is currently facing a massive Housing Crisis: rents have increased 25% over the past decade and are expected to increase by 19% in just the next five (5) years, while wages have actually decreased for many San Diego residents.

A February 2015 KPBS article exposed multiple shortcomings with the current system in San Diego for ensuring basic living standards for tenants, making the case that slumlords are not held accountable in San Diego.

Fortunately, tenants in Ocean Beach are fighting back against one such landlord: Michael Mills.

“In the apartment complex I am in, almost half of the apartments are empty because he [Michael Mills] just keeps raising the rent,” explains one displaced Ocean Beach resident.

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Nuclear Shutdown News May 2016 : Ripped Off California Ratepayers Struggle for Fairness Over San Onofre

June 1, 2016 by Michael Steinberg
Thumbnail image for Nuclear Shutdown News May 2016 : Ripped Off California Ratepayers Struggle for Fairness Over San Onofre

By Michael Steinberg / Black Rain Press

Nuclear Shutdown News chronicles the decline and fall of the US nuclear power industry at home and abroad, and highlights the efforts of those who are fighting to create a nuclear free future. Here is our May issue:

California Nuclear Ratepayers Still Struggling For Justice Over San Onofre Shutdown Costs

On May 17, the Orange County Register ran the story, “How much should consumers pay for the San Onofre shutdown?”

As previously reported by Nuclear Shutdown News, in June 2003, the San Onofre nuclear power plant, located in northern San Diego County, permanently shut down, 20 years ahead schedule.
This followed a scandal involving gross mismanagement and duplicity by its majority owner, Southern California Edison.

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OB Planning Board Meets Wed., June 1: Round-abouts, “Citizens Plan”, and Vets’ Plaza

May 31, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

OBPB Meet 5-4-16 board
The OB Planing Board meets Wednesday, June 1st, at the OB Recreation Center. And at the top of their agenda are a series of presentations and updates, with no new development projects up for review by the Board.

Instead, the Board will receive a presentation about the so-called “Citizens Plan for San Diego” by veteran politico, Jeff Marston. This is the plan backed by the Chargers and some environmentalists and public-interest lawyers to construct a new stadium and convention center downtown.

Next up, is a presentation by Joe LaCava, head of the Committee of Planning Committees – a body of all the planning boards and committees across the city – about the City’s goal to install twenty round-abouts throughout the city. We know the City and OB planners have been considering a round-about at the intersection of West Pt Loma and Bacon.

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Dream Big: Why Voting for Sanders Still Matters, Despite the Electoral Math

May 31, 2016 by Jim Miller

By Jim Miller

bernie sanders big ideaWhat struck me the most about the recent Sanders rally in National City was how much the crowd embodied the notion of the beloved community.

As opposed to the corporate media caricature of Sanders’ supporters as a group of mostly angry, white “Bernie bros,” this huge gathering of over ten thousand people was diverse in age, gender, sexuality, race, and class.

It was also a kind, gentle crowd that fell silent when Sanders, in a moving gesture, stopped his speech when …

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We’ve Got to Get Out and Vote Folks!

May 31, 2016 by Ernie McCray

People lined up to enter building to vote

By Ernie McCray

What’s up with us liberals? We’ve freaked out over a chair supposedly being thrown in protest of shenanigans involving voting in Nevada. And we’re beside ourselves that Hillary got booed and hissed by folks whom we say “aren’t really democrats.”

I don’t like all that but I’ve learned over the years that politics can get rather mean and we democrats are proving that based on how we’re treating each other just discussing matters I’ve just described: talking to each other in caps and exclamations, littered with a few vulgarities.

Shouldn’t we be celebrating a campaign that’s been marvelous if, for no other reason, because of the important questions that are being raised regarding and by two very passionate democratic candidates?

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Your Right to Protest In San Diego

May 27, 2016 by Source

Free Speech Rights, Free Speech Zones, Interactions with Police, Resources and MORE

By the ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties

peaceful protestThe right to join with fellow citizens in protest or peaceful assembly is critical to a functioning democracy.

But it is also unfortunately true that governments and police can violate this right—through the use of mass arrests, illegal use of force, criminalization of protest, and other means intended to thwart free public expression.

Standing up for your right to protest can be challenging, especially when demonstrations are met with confusion, excessive force, or violence. But knowing your rights is the most powerful tool you have against the stifling of your voice.

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#NeverTrumpSD Live Blog: Anti-Trump Day In San Diego

May 27, 2016 by Annie Lane

Trump free speech zones map from the San Diego U-T

Editor: In an important update, San Diego Police have backed off their earlier threats of arresting any demonstrator outside the so-called “free speech zones”, and now say people can demonstrate outside of the designated zones, but they must follow laws and cannot block traffic.

The day has come.

Donald Trump is rallying in San Diego at the Convention Center at 2 p.m. (doors open at 11 a.m.). The San Diego Free Press – the OB Rag’s associates – will be live blogging today’s events. We’ll be pulling pictures and updates from people on the front lines who use the hashtag #NeverTrumpSD or you can send them directly to contact@sandiegofreepres.org.

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Planning Commission Approves Froude Project – OB Planning Board Chair Blasts Process

May 27, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

OB Froude New Design project red

If the Planning Commission does not listen to the voice of the Peninsula Planning Board or the Ocean Beach Planning Board, then what is the purpose of having community groups speak on behalf of the communities they represent.”
John Ambert, Chair of OB Planning Board

On Thursday, May 26th, residents along Froude Street in northeast OB received bad news. The San Diego Planning Commission had approved the controversial project where 2 two large homes with 2 stories and underground garages is planned for 2 small lots. A single-family residence is currently on the lots.

Part of the problem, as we have reported, is that the property is just a few yards from the formal Ocean Beach planning district line – and if it had been in OB, it would not have met the more restrictive requirements that the OB Community Plan. But it was in the Peninsula Community Planning Board’s jurisdiction. Yet, the Peninsula planners voted 9 to 1 against the project and some of them called it “sore thumb” because of its relatively large size and flashy, more modern architecture.

And the OB Planning Board didn’t have a say at all.

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The Very Latest on San Diego’s “Crazy Anti-Trump Day” on Friday

May 26, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

Trump Love Trumps H8 Lt Brigd -sm

Here is the very, very latest in what’s happening on San Diego’s “Crazy Anti-Trump Day”, Friday May 27th.

More groups have announced they are mobilizing their members to protest Trump’s appearance in downtown. They include the LGBT community, San Diego Human Rights organizations and our very own Light Brigade – which is shining on tonight, Thursday.

The seven-or so networks that have been organizing their protest continue to mobilize, and are showing signs of cooperating with one another.

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A Chicano Response to Donald Trump

May 26, 2016 by Source

“Pa Pendejo No Se Estudia!”

By Herman Baca

Herman Baca 1977Many persons have asked me what my political opinion is of presumptive Republican (the white) Party Presidential candidate Donald Trump.

My response is the old Mexican saying, “Pa’ pendejo no se estudia’!” For Trump’s Republican voters & supporters, Winston Churchill’s quote; “The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.”

However the real opinion is what does the Chicano/Mexicano/Latino community say of Donald Trump? In casual conversations with every day people their response is one of personal anger, fury & hatred for Trump. Some of the comments expressed to me are: “Es un pendijo, idiota, pinche gringo, where’s El Chapo when you need him, kiss my brown a#s, and a graffiti wall off I-5 in Logan Heights declaring… F%&K Trump!”

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‘Love Trumps Hate’ Rally Outside Trump Speech at San Diego Convention Center

May 26, 2016 by Source

love trumps hate

“Tear Down the Walls!” Noon rally sponsored by the ‘Love trumps Hate Solidarity Network’

By Martin Eder / Activist San Diego

The Friday May 27 rally outside the Trump speech will be part of a mobilization of several thousand. This noon-time rally at 5th and Harbor Drive, across from the San Diego Convention Center will focus on the theme “Tear Down Walls Between Peoples: Unity/Unidad and Solidarity”.

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ACLU Report: Alarming Cases of Civil Asset Forfeiture Abuse by California Police Departments

May 25, 2016 by Source

Policy Brief Exposes Loophole that Police Use to Profit from Innocent, Vulnerable Californians

By ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties

aclu twitter logoThe American Civil Liberties Union of California released a policy brief on Thursday, May 19, Civil Asset Forfeiture: Profiting from California’s Most Vulnerable, examining civil asset forfeiture abuse by California law enforcement agencies, a practice that greatly impacts communities of color and low-income Californians.

Under federal asset forfeiture laws, the government can legally and permanently forfeit a person’s property and money without charging the person with a crime, or seeking a conviction.

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Peering into the Heart of Darkness: Why I Oppose Mayor Faulconer’s FY’17 Budget

May 25, 2016 by Anna Daniels

homeless w signBy Anna Daniels / San Diego Free Press

The following is the public testimony that I provided at the May 16 budget hearing before the San Diego city council.

Good Evening. My name is Anna Daniels and I am a resident of City Heights. I have attended close to a decade of budget hearings, always as an advocate for our library system.

But this year is different. I stand here before you as a person of conscience who has been witnessing first hand a burgeoning and permanent underclass of the dispossessed in City Heights and San Diego.
homeless sign vet one in 4

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“Friday Is Going to Be One Crazy Anti-Trump Day in San Diego”

May 24, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for “Friday Is Going to Be One Crazy Anti-Trump Day in San Diego”

NEW UPDATES (as of 5/26/16) – see “The Very Latest ….”

It’s going to be literally one crazy, anti-Trump day in downtown San Diego on Friday, May 27th. So much is going on that it boggles the mind to try to imagine everything.

First, of course, Donal Trump is arriving at the San Diego Convention Center to speak to his throngs around 2pm. And coming out to see and hear him, of course, will be probably thousands of ticket-holders. There will be long lines of them snaking around the Convention Center – which undoubtedly will be off-limits to protesters. Except those protesters in line with tickets.

Second, there will be thousands of protesters coming out to demonstrate against Trump and all that he stands for. There’s at least six different networks or groups mobilizing their supporters to show Trump that San Diegans will not stand for him.

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“Eleanor’s Story”: A Book and a Stage Production Not to be Missed

May 24, 2016 by Ernie McCray

p_2256_i_6661656By Ernie McCray

I met a woman named Eleanor Ramrath Garner early in April at a nice party at a beautiful Del Mar home with a wonderful view on a warm inviting sunny day.

The gathering had everything I like: delicious food; refreshing drinks; interesting witty people, scholars all, practically, filled with colorful stories to tell and they didn’t mind telling them.

Some of them had written doctoral studies and books and essays for professional publications. Eleanor happened to mention that she was an author. She didn’t say what her book was about but something about her made me want to read it. So I looked for it on Amazon.

And there it was: “Eleanor’s Story, an American Girl in Hitler’s Germany.” I clicked on “See a random page” and a picture appeared of Eleanor’s little brother and sister on Christmas Day in 1945 with the words “This was our best Christmas ever because we had survived the bombings, the Battle of Berlin, and hunger.”

I was sold.

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OB Town Council – Presentations on OB’s Controversial Private Cops and Women’s Self-Defense – Wed., May 25th

May 24, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

OB security patrolThis Wednesday, May 25th, the Ocean Beach Town Council will hold its monthly public meeting at the Masonic Center, located at 1711 Sunset Cliffs Blvd, at 7pm as usual.

Besides the usual reports from the different politicians’ reps, reports from the public agencies that serve OB: fire department, police, lifeguard, elementary school, and library, and after all the Board members give their reports, the Town Council will move into its main agenda item: ‘OB public safety – engagement and empowerment”.

At the top of the public safety element, is a presentation of the OB Mainstreet Association’s “OB Security Program”- the enlistment of private security team patrols of a company called the National Public Safety (NPS). Reportedly, NPS teams “patrol the business districts of OB and work closely with SDPD to get positive results for the entire community.”

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