Organizing

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

June 29, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Stop Work Order on Emerson Project in Point Loma Issued by City

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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Angry Point Loma Citizens Fill Town Hall Meeting About Emerson Project

June 28, 2016 by Source

PL Emerson proj meet 6-27-16

By Geoff Page

Last night there was a town hall meeting at the Portuguese Hall in Point Loma that was filled to capacity with a whole bunch of angry citizens.

The meeting was to discuss a project on Evergreen and Emerson in Roseville that is a 40-foot tall thumb in the eye of San Diegans.

But, the issue is much bigger than one project, it concerns all of the area affected by the 30-foot height limit.

Representatives from the mayor’s office, District 2, the City Attorney, and the Development Services Department (DSD) were supposed to be on hand. Not one single City official showed up. Let’s call that thumb in the eye number two.

The issue is the City’s new interpretation as to how the sacred 30-foot height limit is measured. The City is allowing a developer to raise the grade on part of a flat lot in Roseville eight to ten feet and then measure 30 feet from there. This had been tried in the past and was always disallowed but not anymore.

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Big Win for Women’s Rights! Supreme Court Strikes Down Texas Restrictions on Abortion Provider Law

June 27, 2016 by Doug Porter

supreme court building“Today women across the nation have had their constitutional rights vindicated.” —Nancy Northup, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights

By Doug Porter

The Supreme Court’s 5-3 ruling in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt will affect millions of women in several states. The case, arising from a Texas law, is the most important abortion rights case in a generation.

Justice Steven Breyer penned the majority opinion, which said in essence:

Both the admitting privileges and surgical center requirements place a substantial obstacle in the path of women seeking a previability abortion, constitute an undue burden on abortion access, and thus violate the Constitution.

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Let Them Eat Rocks

June 27, 2016 by Source

police ticket homeless

By Jeeni Criscenzo / San Diego Free Press

Last week was a helluva week for those of us helping people without a place to live.

There were plenty of tweets and Facebook posts about the heatwave, as well as the Border fire that was threatening several communities out in East County. But unlike the all-out effort to help residents, pets and livestock in the path of the fire, there was no effort to help the residents of downtown under direct assault from a relentless sun.

Except for access to the library which, for those living on the street, would entail leaving all of your few meager possessions outside, unattended, there was no Health and Human Services program to help them.

The week actually began last Friday for me when my friend Martha Sullivan called asking for help to provide a Cooling Station offering lifesaving hydration and shade for homeless people during the predicted heatwave.

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Point Loma Residents Protest Structure in Violation of 30-Foot Height Limit

June 26, 2016 by Matthew Wood

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Point Lomans Rally in front of Eyesore Building at Emerson and Evergreen

Nearly 100 Point Lomans gathered Saturday morning, June 25th, to protest the development of a pair of duplexes they say violates the area’s 30-foot building limit.

The building in question, at the corner of Emerson and Evergreen streets in the Roseville neighborhood, measure upwards of 41 feet.

Opponents of the structure say the developer, Pacific Enterprise General Contractor, is skirting the zoning rules by filling in space between the garage and the end of the property with dirt, then measuring height from that spot.

“The goal is to get a stop order, which can be done,” said Jon Linney, chair of the Point Loma Planning Board and an outspoken opponent of the building.

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Bernie Sanders: “Here’s What We Want”

June 24, 2016 by Source

Bernie Sanders wp shot

By Bernie Sanders / Washington Post – RSN / June 24, 2016

As we head toward the Democratic National Convention, I often hear the question, “What does Bernie want?” Wrong question. The right question is what the 12 million Americans who voted for a political revolution want.

And the answer is: They want real change in this country, they want it now and they are prepared to take on the political cowardice and powerful special interests which have prevented that change from happening.

They understand that the United States is the richest country in the history of the world, and that new technology and innovation make us wealthier every day. What they don’t understand is why the middle class continues to decline, 47 million of us live in poverty and many Americans are forced to work two or three jobs just to cobble together the income they need to survive.

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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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Overpassing the Value of Public Space

June 24, 2016 by Source

FreewayOverpass Public Space

By Howard M. Blackson III / SanDiego.UrbDeZine.com

“Caltrans does not restrict the right of free speech with handheld banners, but attaching flags or banners is not allowed,” a Caltrans-Spokesman told the San Jose Mercury News.

He added, “We are concerned that people waving handheld banners could cause driver distraction — putting their safety or that of the motoring public at risk.” Today, we have prioritized the ‘motoring public’ over all other aspects of public life.

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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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OB People’s Organic Food Market – Worker-Owned Co-op – in the Gig Economy

June 21, 2016 by John Lawrence
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The Gig Economy: Okay If the Profits Went to the Giggers

By John Lawrence

There’s nothing inherently wrong with the idea of working a job here and a job there according to the worker’s convenience and other activities.

The problem is that the profits go to some centralized corporation rather than being spread out among all the giggers in proportion to their participation in the system.

gig economy

If Uber or Lyft were a co-op, the profits would go to all the worker/owners instead of a handful of investors.
Then the gig economy would offer not only a technique for working at one’s convenience and fitting into one’s schedule whether that schedule might be educational or child care or surfing or whatever.

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

June 20, 2016 by Staff

OBTC OB image 6-22-16

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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League of Women Voters Talks Trash to San Diego Rules Committee

June 20, 2016 by Source

trash canBy Anne Haule / San Diego Free Press

Last Wednesday – June 15th – the League of Women Voters of San Diego called for a revote of a hundred year old law.

Representing the League was Beryl Flom, who addressed the city of San Diego’s Rules Committee regarding the overhaul of a law called the People’s Ordinance. She requested the measure be placed on the November ballot.

Originally enacted in 1919, The People’s Ordinance allowed the city to take over food waste and trash collection from a private company that sold it to pig farmers. It was amended in 1986 to prohibit the city from imposing a fee for trash hauling service.

The People’s Ordinance only applies to single-family households who put their bins on public streets — not multi-unit buildings, businesses or commercial establishments — and requires $47 million from the General Fund to operate. Twenty-three percent of the city’s trash is collected from about half of the city’s households through the People’s Ordinance.

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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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Democracy in Action at City Council Rules Committee

June 16, 2016 by John Lawrence

By John Lawrence

City Council Rules CommitteeOn Wednesday, June 15, 2016, there was a well-attended meeting of the Rules Committee of the San Diego City Council.

Many diverse topics were covered, some at exhaustive lengths. The meeting lasted over three hours with a dozen or more speakers pleading their causes.

Most were asking the Rules Committee to take issues to the full City Council for consideration on the November ballot.

There was a discussion of the nature of the voting system.

The way it is right now someone running for office who gets 50% of the vote plus one in the June primary is considered elected.

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The Sordid History of the OB Rag – the First Issue – September 1970

June 15, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

OB Rag cover vol 1 no 1Editor:

Most of the following is a repost of an article published on September 8, 2015, in celebration of the OB Rag’s 45th anniversary.

It was September 1970 when the very first issue of the OB People’s Rag hit the streets of Ocean Beach.
With the banner date of September 17 1970, Volume 1 No. 1 was published on a mimeograph machine, it included 4 pages, back and front, stapled together.

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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

SD U-T stvr 3

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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A Bad Climate? The State of Social Justice Efforts in the Labor and Environmental Movements

June 13, 2016 by Jim Miller

no bakkenBy Jim Miller

Among the stories that you may have missed during the stretch run of the primary season was some significantly bad news out of labor on the national front.

Several large unions in the building trades came out against a plan by some of the biggest public sector unions to join forces with environmentalist Tom Steyer in order to fund a major anti-Trump get out the vote operation in the fall. The New York Times noted that:

Two of the Democratic Party’s most loyal constituencies, labor and environmentalists, are clashing over an effort to raise tens of millions of dollars for an ambitious voter turnout operation aimed at defeating Donald J. Trump in the November election.

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City of San Diego Ballot Proposals Promote Police Transparency, Human Services

June 13, 2016 by Anna Daniels

Women Occupy San Diego address Citizens Review Board
on Policy Practices inadequacies (again);

Democratic Woman’s Club advocacy for City of San Diego
Department of Public Health and Social Welfare

Women Occupy San Diego

By Anna Daniels / San Diego Free Press

Keep an eye on some of the new ballot proposals that have been filed recently with the San Diego City Clerk.

These proposals reflect focused citizen participation that offer correctives to the city’s Citizen Review Board on Police Practices (CRB) and the county’s meager health and human services. These small “d” democratic efforts also happen to be spearheaded by women.

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Renters’ Rights Activists Hold Rally in OB

June 7, 2016 by Source
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Last Saturday, June 4th, a rally was held on the grassy area near Veterans’ Plaza in Ocean Beach by renters’ rights activists, who are circulating a rent-control petition for San Diego. They also have targeted one of OB’s landlords, Michael Mills.

Here is some of a report by Dave Rice at the San Diego Reader:

A group of activists seeking a rent-control ordinance and other tenant-protection measures gathered in Ocean Beach on Saturday, circulating a petition they hope will convince the city council to open a dialogue concerning their grievances.

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Calif Parks Dept Wants to Ban Off-Trail Hiking or Climbing in Cuyamaca and Anza Borrego Parks

June 7, 2016 by Source
Thumbnail image for Calif Parks Dept Wants to Ban Off-Trail Hiking or Climbing in Cuyamaca and Anza Borrego Parks

From East County News Service

The California Department of Parks and Recreation proposes prohibiting public access off designated trails. [Ed.:The public had until June 6 to comment.]

In San Diego County, that would include Rancho Cuyamaca and Anza Borrego Desert state parks.

California State Parks Map

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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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More on Controversial Froude Project: Statement by Jarvis Ross at Planning Commission

June 3, 2016 by Source
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Editor: The following are prepared remarks made by Jarvis Ross before the San Diego Planning Commission on May 26 on the issue of the controversial Froude Street project. Ross is, a member of the Peninsula Community Planning Board for 15 years. The project is slated for 2257 Froude.

Statement by Jarvis Ross

Planning Commission Chairman Haase and Commissioners I am Jarvis Ross and had been a member of the Peninsula Community Planning Board excepting term limits from the year 2000 until March of this year.

While I was on the board the Froude Street project was opposed by the Peninsula Planning Board, nearby residents and Ocean Beach Property owners backing up to the South side of Froude Street.

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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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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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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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