San Diego

Who is the Enemy of the People?

August 16, 2018 by Staff

By the Staffs of the OB Rag and San Diego Free Press

Today – August 16 – in over three hundred editorials in newspapers and media platforms large and small across the country, the American press is standing up and renouncing president Trump’s declarations that the media is “the enemy of the people.”

The San Diego Free Press and the OB Rag join these denunciations, in the call to confront Trump first put out by The Boston Globe, which began its call with:

A central pillar of President Trump’s politics is a sustained assault on the free press. Journalists are not classified as fellow Americans, but rather “the enemy of the people.” This relentless assault on the free press has dangerous consequences. We asked editorial boards from around the country – liberal and conservative, large and small – to join us today to address this fundamental threat in their own words.

The Globe published a chart based on an Ipsos poll conducted August 3-6, 2018, that showed a total of 29% agreed with the phrase, “the news media is the enemy of the people”. 21% didn’t know, while just under half (48%) disagreed. Yet among Republicans, it’s a sentiment endorsed by 48-51% of them.

Trump just last month, The Globe pointed out, told a crowd in Kansas,

“Just stick with us, don’t believe the crap you see from these people, the fake news. Just remember, what you’re seeing and what you’re reading is not what’s happening.”

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Helping Immigrant Families While Stalking a Border Town Greyhound Bus Station

August 15, 2018 by Source

By Mimi Pollack

Helping others is not political. It’s good for the soul. When you help others, you forget about your own problems for awhile. In addition, nobody should make you feel bad about who you decide to help. In my case, as a writer, I have interviewed many good folks assisting others — be they two-legged or four-legged — and ended up also giving to many charitable human and animal organizations.

I had wanted to find a way to help the mothers and especially the children in detention centers. My first thought was to bring stuffed animals to comfort the children at one of the centers, but that didn’t work out.

Then a successful business woman I know, who came here from Central America more than 30 years ago, told me about going to the local bus station to bring things to the mothers and children ICE was dropping off there. I decided that was a concrete way I could help.

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Convention Center, County Voting Initiatives Bode Poorly for Local GOP Leaders

August 14, 2018 by Doug Porter

Last week was a rough week for the status quo in San Diego. The (mostly) unspoken private-public partnership between land developers and local elected officials couldn’t get it done. Not once, but twice.

A faux ‘citizens initiative’ run by hoteliers, and assorted Mayoral toadies won’t be on the November ballot. Visions of economic growth centered on convention center expansion ended amid finger pointing and raised middle fingers. Grift, incompetence and a failure to understand public weariness with past promises of economic benefits trickling down from the schemes of the rich and famous all played in role in the effort’s spectacular failure.

The days of San Diego County being a Republican enclave may be numbered.

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OB Resister Sisters Strike Again – ‘Thanks, GOP – I Couldn’t Have Screwed Your Country Without You – Love, Putin’

August 13, 2018 by Staff

They’ve done it again! The OB Resister Sisters have struck again – this time with a banner over a freeway near downtown San Diego.

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Progressive Calendar for San Diego Aug. 13 – 20

August 13, 2018 by Doug Porter

August 14

Chicano San Diego: A Neglected Heritage

Tuesday, August 14, 1pm
San Diego History Center
1649 El Prado (Balboa Park)
For More Information
Hosted by San Diego History Center

SDSU Professor Emeritus Richard Griswold del Castillo presents a survey of the major themes and contributions to San Diego’s history by the Spanish speaking people.

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Candidate Dumanis Gets Dumped by Deputy Sheriffs Association in Supervisors Race

August 13, 2018 by Doug Porter

San Diego’s Deputy Sheriffs Association has rescinded an earlier endorsement of former District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis, the Republican candidate in the race for Fourth District Supervisor. [ Editordude: Ocean Beach and most of Point Loma are in the Fourth District.]

Former Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher, the Democratic candidate, now holds the title of ‘law enforcement’s choice,’ according to a press release landing in my inbox this morning.

The Deputy Sheriff’s Association of San Diego County (DSA) today announced their endorsement of Nathan Fletcher for County Supervisor.

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San Diego Billionaire’s Plan for Balboa Park Back in Court

August 8, 2018 by Frank Gormlie

San Diego billionaire and Qualcomm co-founder Irwin Jacob’s $80 million plan for Balboa Park – the so-call Plaza de Panama make-over – is back in court after being stalled for months. Actually it went back to court, Monday, July 30, or at least part of it did, as one of the two current lawsuits against the Jacob-backed plan went before a judge.

The one back in court involved a suit filed by attorney Cory Briggs on behalf of San Diegans for Open Government. It challenges the city of San Diego’s use of bonds to financially support the city’s share of the then $78 million make-over, and contends the City Council should have sought voter approval before deciding to issue bonds to pay for the city’s share.

The second case was filed by Save Our Heritage Organisation (SOHO) and now it awaits a state Court of Appeal hearing. SOHO appealed the earlier Superior Court ruling that favored the city,

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Councilmembers Ward, Cole and Zapf Block Effort to Place Police Review Reform on Nov. Ballot

August 6, 2018 by Frank Gormlie

While San Diego City Councilmembers Lorie Zapf and Chris Ward were reaping props and applause in Ocean Beach and other coastal neighborhoods due to their efforts to regulate short term vacation rentals, the toast-of-the-town duo had moved on other planes and joined the conservative members among their colleagues to wreck havoc and short circuit another popular effort. The effort to reform how police officers have civilian oversight.

Ward – maybe hoping to become the darling of San Diego liberals – what with his proposed ban on styrofoam – crashed and burned that plan. On Monday, July 30, at a Council hearing he joined other councilmembers to thwart an effort to place a measure on the November ballot which would have substantially improved civilian oversight of the San Diego Police Department.

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‘Already Dead’: A Lunch Poem for Golden Hill – Summer Chronicles 2018 #8

August 6, 2018 by Jim Miller

On the back cover of Frank O’Hara’s classic City Lights Books collection, Lunch Poems, he defines his efforts succinctly:

Often this poet, strolling through the noisy splintered glare of a Manhattan noontide,

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‘Why We Sat Down at the National City Council Meeting’

August 3, 2018 by Source

By Mark Lane and Shane Parmely / San Diego Free Press

We went to the Tuesday, July 24, National City Council meeting to speak out against the police brutality that left Earl McNeil brain dead.

For almost six weeks, we’ve peacefully and loudly protested at the National City Council meetings. For six weeks, we’ve asked the National City Police Department (NCPD) to release the videotapes pertaining to the in-custody death of Earl McNeil. For six weeks, we’ve been ignored by the three men who control the National City Council and the NCPD. For six weeks, we’ve been treated to excessive force and violence by the NCPD.

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Should San Diego Ban Styrofoam?

July 27, 2018 by Frank Gormlie

Councilman Chris Ward appeared before the Ocean Beach Town Council last Wednesday night and urged OBceans to support his efforts to ban styrofoam.

He explained his proposal passed the Council’s Rules Committee unanimously on July 11 and is heading to the full Council sometime this fall.

And if San Diego does pass it, the city will become the 4th city in San Diego County to ban food and beverage containers made of styrofoam – also called polystyrene; others include Solana Beach, Encinitas and Imperial Beach.

Our city would become the largest city in California to enact the ban, joining a list of 116 other cities across the state, which include San Jose, San Francisco and Long Beach (while Los Angeles is discussing it).

So, just what is Councilman Ward’s proposal?

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Vacation Rental Mini-Empire Owner Calls for ‘Firestorm of Anger’ in Assault on San Diego’s Democratic Process

July 25, 2018 by Frank Gormlie

When the San Diego City Council voted by a wide majority on July 16 to regulate short term vacation rentals, it was using the democratic process to resolve an issue that has been plaguing the city and especially the beach and coastal neighborhoods for years. By a vote of 6 to 3, the bi-partisan majority vote saved coastal residences for long-term renters.

Yet, immediately, the Airbnb crowd cried foul, threatening legal suits – and more against the vote – which has to be confirmed on Wednesday, August 1 in a so-called “second reading” of the ordinance. The second reading will be at 1PM in the Council Chambers at 202 C Street, 12th floor.

So, now Airbnb, HomeAway, and local STVR operators are planning “an all-out assault” against the regulations just passed coming up for that second reading. One owner of a local mini-empire of vacation rentals has called for a “firestorm of anger” to be unleashed at the City Council meeting.

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Thinking of Bukowski at Del Mar – Summer Chronicles 2018 #6

July 23, 2018 by Jim Miller

Every year, opening day at Del Mar brings out the beautiful people. Handsome, well-heeled (or at least trying to look that way) young men and women get dressed to the nines and parade around the track, seeing and being seen. It is a classic San Diego moment: shiny happy people in an elegant place on a perfect summer day.

Not a trouble in the world.

Until they start betting and losing and betting and losing.

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The Burden of Charter Schools in San Diego County

July 20, 2018 by Source

By Thomas Ultican / San Diego Free Press

The California charter school law is doing serious harm to public schools. Few counties in the state have been more impacted by charter schools than San Diego County. This past school year 75,473 of the 508,169 publicly financed students enrolled in charter schools. In other words, 14.9 percent of San Diego’s students attended privatized schools and in the San Diego Unified School District, that percentage was greater than 17 percent.

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Building Trust With Police is Like Trying to Assemble a Jigsaw Puzzle

July 17, 2018 by Ernie McCray

A jigsaw puzzle depicting the word "TRUST"

Creating Commission on Police Practices Moves to Full San Diego City Council.

“Trust is the Issue” was one of our rallying cries at the City Council’s Rules Committee meeting last Wednesday, July 11.

And the committee came through, voting 3-2 to pass the idea of creating a Commission on Police Practices on to the full Council.

That sounds hopeful to me but trying to build trust with the police in San Diego, for communities of color, has been like trying to assemble a jigsaw puzzle. One with too many pieces – due to years of bad history.

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Persist With Pride, San Diego

July 13, 2018 by Doug Porter

This weekend provides the opportunity to observe some of the accomplishments of the past few decades by activists and allies in the LBGTQ movement.

San Diego Pride festivities have grown from a small grassroots march for equal rights in the 1970s into the largest civic event in the region, with activities spanning a full week.

The organizers of San Diego Pride have donated over 2.5 million dollars to LGBTQ-serving nonprofits

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Coalition of Community Groups Opposes Faulconer’s Short Term Rental Plan and Makes Own Recommendations

July 11, 2018 by Frank Gormlie

Public Forum on STVRs – Thursday, July 12

A San Diego coalition of town councils – including the Ocean Beach Town Council – and other community groups has just strongly come out against Mayor Faulconer’s proposed ordinance on regulating short term vacation rentals, and instead have their own set of recommendations and proposals.

The coalition, called the San Diego Community Short Term Vacation Rental Working Group, is trying to gear up San Diegans opposed to STVRs to attend the upcoming City Council meeting on Monday, July 16 where they are set to vote and pass regulations on the controversial rentals.

The STVR Working Group is also hosting a public forum on July 12 to answer questions or concerns about how the proposed Faulconer ordinance will affect schools and residential neighborhoods of San Diego

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Malcolm X and Police Accountability on My Mind

July 11, 2018 by Ernie McCray

Photo of Malcolm X poster labeled "NOT FOR SALE"

By Ernie McCray

I attended a meeting the other night at the Malcolm X Library about a proposed Amendment to the City of San Diego Charter to create a Commission on Police Practices.

I couldn’t help but think of Malcolm throughout the evening because he would be pleased at the very idea

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Former San Diego Police Chief Zimmerman’s Fake News on Marijuana Takes on a Life of Its Own

July 10, 2018 by Source

By Jessica Sutherland / Daily Kos

Ever since the term “Fake News” entered the popular lexicon, almost everyone knows to check their news sources closely, and roll their eyes at Trump. But what’s a responsible citizen to do when “Fake News” and “alternative facts” originate with reliable, trusted sources?

Recently retired San Diego Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman should, in theory, have been one of those reliable, trusted sources, assuming you trust law enforcement. Unfortunately, a recent investigation by Voice of San Diego’s Jesse Marx reveals that the former chief manufactured crime statistics in an apparent effort to block expansion of the cannabis industry within America’s Finest City. Worse, her fake facts are now being used to justify and shape cannabis attitudes and policy in other municipalities.

This is how it begins.

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Short Term Vacation Rentals: the Discussion Continues on San Diego Mayor’s Flawed Plan

July 9, 2018 by Frank Gormlie

In Sunday, July 8th’s Op-Ed page in the San Diego Union-Tribune, discussion on short term vacation rentals fairly monopolized the opinion section as representatives of the hotel industry, Councilwoman Barbara Bry and the head of the Mission Beach Town Council all hashed it out.

The op-ed pieces were responding to Mayor Faulconer’s recent “compromise” proposal to resolve one of the most contentious issues currently roiling San Diego – what to do about the short term rentals.

In their piece entitled, “Neighborhoods, Jobs Must Be Protected“, Katherine Lugar and Lynn Mohrfeld – both CEOs of hotel industry associations – at first came out swinging against STVRs and appeared to be right-on:

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‘Families Belong Together’ Rallies All Over San Diego County – Sat., June 30

June 29, 2018 by Staff

There are rallies all around San Diego County Saturday, June 30, for Families Belong Together. Downtown San Diego, El Cajon, Carlsbad, Ramona – and Temecula.

Unlike the June 23 mass rally at the Civic Center, some of this weekend’s events in San Diego have been organized on the spur – but they’ll no less determined in sending a message to the Trump administration to permanently end the separation of kids from their parents. To end family internment camps. To end the “zero-humanity” policy that created this crisis.

There are more than 700 events nationwide

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Send a Message to Trump: Families Belong Together – San Diego, Sat., June 30

June 28, 2018 by Source

Over 700 Actions for Families Belong Together on June 30

Donald Trump and his administration have cruelly separated children from their families. We won’t allow it to continue — and we won’t let them put families into internment camps.

On June 30, we’re rallying in San Diego, Washington, D.C., and around the country to tell Donald Trump and his administration to stop separating kids from their parents!

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San Diego Federal Judge Rules All Children Separated From Parents Under ‘Zero Tolerance’ Policy Must Be Reunited Within 30 Days

June 27, 2018 by Staff

A San Diego federal court judge made a significant ruling Tuesday, June 26, on reuniting kids separated from their immigrant parents. U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw issued a preliminary injunction that calls for all children affected by the Trump administration’s “zero-tolerance” immigration policy to be reunited with their parents within 30 days.

Under Sabraw’s order, the federal government must reunite children younger than 5 years old with their parents within 14 days, and within 30 days for older children.

In addition, the feds must allow parents to call their children if they’re not already in contact with them within 10 days.

The injunction came at the request of the American Civil Liberties Union.

As reported

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San Diego Protest of Supreme Court Upholding Muslim Travel Ban – Tues., June 26 at Federal Courthouse #StandWithMuslims –

June 26, 2018 by Doug Porter

Today! Tuesday 6/26 @ 7:30 pm * U.S. Courthouse 880 Front Street, Downtown – As National Day of Action

This morning, the Supreme Court issued its decision to uphold the Trump v. Hawai’i Muslim Ban case. President Donald Trump’s restriction on travel to the United States from a handful of Muslim countries was upheld by the Supreme Court by a 5-4 vote.

Chief Justice John Roberts’ majority opinion made it clear the court viewed the ability to regulate immigration as being within a president’s powers, rejecting critics’ claims of anti-Muslim bias.

In response, protests at Federal Court Houses are scheduled throughout the country. In Washington DC, a reaction from activists was almost immediate – including San Diego.

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Otay Mesa Detention Center Called ‘Concentration Camp’ by Clergy-Led Protesters

June 26, 2018 by Source

– Chant and Response: “We are with you. We hear you. We will not forget you.” -“Estamos contigos. Les oyemos. No les olvidamos.”

By Kathy Stadler / San Diego Free Press

With so many events taking place around the immigration travesty, it seems one may have gone under-noticed. During the PICO California statewide day of action Sunday, June 24, it was clear that the people being detained at the Otay Mesa Detention Center, could hear the protesters outside and tried to make contact – shouting and drumming.

PICO California, “the largest multi-racial faith-based community-organizing network in the state” organized a statewide weekend of action

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Text of Senator Kamala Harris’ Speech Outside Otay Mesa Detention Center

June 25, 2018 by Source

Following is a speech given by U.S. Senator Kamala Harris on Friday, June 22.

So let’s shout for the children and families. Let’s shout for them. So, first of all, I want to thank everyone for coming out and for all the work that everyone has been doing to give voice to these families, to these children, and to this issue.

I was just in there, I got a tour of that detention facility and then I sat down and spoke for some time and visited with the mothers who are there. And my heart is broken. These mothers, these mothers have given testimony, if you will, have given the stories, have shared their stories, their personal stories that are a story of a human rights abuse being committed by the United States government.

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Utilities Commission Rejects San Diego Gas & Electric’s Pipeline

June 22, 2018 by Source

By Colleen Cochran

The California Public Utilities Commission placed the welfare of San Diego County citizens and wildlife ahead of San Diego Gas & Electric’s profits yesterday, June 21.

The 5-member commission voted unanimously to reject SDG&E and its partner Southern California Gas’ bid to install 47 miles of new pipeline from the Rainbow Metering Station near Fallbrook down through Miramar, mostly along Interstate 15. Another potential route these utilities were considering would have taken the line through Mission Trails Regional Park.

The rejected Pipeline 3602 would have been 36 inches wide and have had five times the carrying capacity of existent 16-inch-wide Pipeline 1600. In an effort to avoid making potential repairs to Line 1600, SDG&E’s plan was to reduce the operating pressure on that line and to run new Pipeline 3602 at high pressure.

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Despite Trump Signing His Executive Order, Actions in San Diego Are Still On

June 22, 2018 by Staff

The Overpass Light Brigade’s display on Tuesday evening:

Protest Actions in San Diego on Friday and Saturday Still On


11 AM
Keep Families Together With Senator Kamala Harris
Otay Mesa Detention Facility, 7488 Calzada De La Fuente

3:00 – 4:30 PM
“Keep Families Together” Nurse-In
880 Front Street San Diego 92101

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America’s Soul On the Line as Trump Moves to Set Up 4 Prison Camps for Babies and Toddlers

June 20, 2018 by Frank Gormlie

UPDATE: Under pressure from the entire country, Trump signed an executive order today, Wednesday, that is meant to keep families together at the border, halting a policy he instituted earlier this year.

13 Governors Pull Back their National Guard Units from Border in Protest of Trump Child Separation Policy

Rachel Maddow wept openly on TV as she struggled to read the last report of her nightly broadcast on MSNBC last night, June 19. It was an AP story about how the Trump administration was moving to set up a 4th prison camp for hundreds of babies and toddlers in south Texas, euphemistically called “Tender Age Centers”.

Maddow’s empathy matched that of most of the country, as America reeled under the horrifying images and audio recordings of small children wailing for their parents –

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Some San Diego Primary Election Results Are Changing – Pease Inches Closer to Campbell in District 2 Balloting

June 20, 2018 by Source

By Colleen Cochran

You know the 2018 San Diego County Primary Election is not officially over, don’t you? As of Tuesday evening, June 19, roughly 15,000 ballots are left to be counted.

The results first announced after election day, which was held June 5, 2018, reflected votes compiled from precinct ballots, as well as those from mail-in ballots received early by the San Diego County Registrar of Voters.

Tallies of mail-in ballots dropped off at the polls were completed late last week. Only the provisional ballots remain uncounted. Thus far, election results have changed in two races:

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