This Is Not a Drill: Save the Coast 30 Foot Height Limit – Contact City Council

June 9, 2020 by Source

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Ocean Beach Town Council Stands With Black Lives Matter

June 9, 2020 by Source

In a letter released Monday, June 8, the Ocean Beach Town Council announced it is taking a stand with Black Lives Matter. The letter, addressed to “The Ocean Beach Community and our friends around the world,” states:

“We recognize that many of our black friends, family, neighbors, and colleagues are abused by the institutions put in place to protect and serve all Americans.”

In a strong message for unity and against injustice, the letter said:

“The Board of Directors of the Ocean Beach Town Council knows that Black Lives Matter. We know that injustice toward some is injustice toward all.”

It stated, “We have a duty to stand with our black neighbors in San Diego and make it abundantly clear that all are welcome here.” It also said the Town Council is “heartened and inspired by the peaceful protests that have taken place in our neighborhood.” It continued:

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Ocean Beach Pier, Beach Parking Lots and Boardwalks Reopen Today – Tuesday, June 9

June 9, 2020 by Staff

Beginning today, Tuesday, June 9, the Ocean Beach Pier, beach parking lots and boardwalks reopen.

Social – or physical – distancing still needs to be practiced by beachgoers. This means people should only sit near people whom they live with.

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Photo of the Day – the OB Paddle Out for Black Lives Matter

June 8, 2020 by Source

The folks who organized the OB Paddle Out also had a drone in the air. See our pictorial of the historic event.

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A Pictorial of the Ocean Beach Paddle Out in Solidarity with Black Lives Matter

June 8, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

Join us in a pictorial view of the historic Ocean Beach Paddle Out in solidarity with Black Lives Matter, held Sunday, June 7. We have photos from a number of sources.

First, people started gathering at the foot of Newport on the grass. Many brought signs … and surfboards.

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National Guard Withdrawn From San Diego County – Finally!

June 8, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

After demands from local elected officials and others, and after a week of peaceful protests, the California National Guard has finally withdrawn from San Diego County.

Two hundred Guard troops were deployed Thursday, June 4, in the county to ostensibly support police officers in La Mesa and sheriff’s deputies across the region. It was a request from Sheriff Bill Gore that brought the Guard here.

Their withdrawal comes a day after San Diego County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher requested the National Guard leave the area and two days after the San Diego City Council President, Georgett Gomez, did the same. Both Gomez and Sarah Jacobs are running for Susan Davis’ Congressional seat and both came out against the Guard’s presence.

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Sometimes It Takes A Woman To Take Down a Bully

June 8, 2020 by Source

By Colleen O’Connor

Trump has a woman problem. It started with the massive Women’s March just after his inauguration and hasn’t let up.

In the 2018 midterms, 59% of women overall voted for a Democratic House candidate — with those rates reaching 73% for Latinas and 92% for black women. Even greater numbers today.Facing a 2020 election, Trump keeps getting hammered by women. Even Republican women.

Forget the international stars; German Chancellor, Angela Merkel; who politely declined to attend Trump’s G-7 meeting in Mar-A-Lago or Camp David, due to “pandemic concerns;” rolled her eyes at his comments about his German heritage; and who loomed over him at the G-7 summit in June of last year in a domineering photo that went viral.

Let’s look closer to home for our own female leaders. The women Trump frequently denigrates by Tweet.

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Police as Community – a Challenge for Us All

June 8, 2020 by Staff

By Joni Halpern

Antonin Scalia, the late Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, was fond of reminding people that he and other American children of immigrants were not responsible for slavery. His folks had emigrated from Italy, he said; they had nothing to do with the subjugation of Black people in America.

This was not the only point on which the revered Justice was grossly ignorant, despite his celebrated intellect, but it was a point he shared with many of us white Americans.

For nearly 400 years, with very little interruption, we white people have taken refuge in this and other morally bankrupt justifications for how things have turned out for yesterday’s and today’s Black Americans. And even today, most white Americans allow Black youth and their supporters to march without our visible presence behind them, allowing them to bear the full brunt of rage by police departments desperate to remain as they are, militarized and polarized into an “us-versus-them” idea of their role in our communities.

Police argue they are doing all they can.

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A Voice from the Frontlines of the George Floyd Protests – Interview with Khalid (Paul) Alexander of Pillars of the Community

June 8, 2020 by Jim Miller

Alexander Is the Founder and President of Pillars of the Community

By Jim Miller

As the activism and protests in response to the murder of George Floyd intensified both nationally and locally last week, I thought I would check in with my City College colleague and community activist Khalid (Paul) Alexander, whose work with Pillars of the Community (insert link: puts him in the heart of the struggle to break down institutional racism in the criminal justice system and elsewhere in San Diego on a daily basis. Here he speaks to the work of his organization and the deep inequities Pillars of the Community is struggling to address.

Question: Tell me about Pillars of the Community? What kind of organization is it? What inspired you to found it? What kind of work do you do in the community?

Answer: Pillars of the Community is an organization dedicated to advocating for people who are negatively targeted by law enforcement. We do this advocacy through community building and policy work.

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400 People at Ocean Beach Paddle Out Rally in Solidarity With Black Lives Matter

June 7, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

At least 400 people joined a rally near the foot of Newport Avenue in Ocean Beach Sunday as part of a “Paddle Out” in solidarity with Black Lives Matter.

The rally broke up and a minimum of hundred people jumped into the choppy waters with their surfboards, making a large circle once they all made it past the breakers. All photos by Bob Edwards.

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Coalition of Groups to San Diego Mayor and City Council: Black and Poor Communities Need Action Now!

June 6, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

There’s a coalition of San Diego organizers who are organizing in response to the police violence and disproportionate impact of Covid-19 on black and poor communities. The Community Budget Alliance.

A big part of their platform is the People’s Budget and they’re asking people and groups to email the Mayor and City Council this weekend. See the letter here.

Also, here’s their introduction:

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‘End of an Era’ at Ocean Beach – Or Just a Lull?

June 5, 2020 by Source

Here are pics that depict the “end of an era” – a time before many of the restrictions on the beach were lifted, before you could put your tush back on the sand – and perhaps the beginning of a new normal – getting back to surfing and being responsible on the beach and water – captured by Charles Landon the weekend of May 30.

But, is it the end of an era, or just a lull? Here’s hoping there’s not a second wave.

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Polls: Most Americans Support George Floyd Protests and See Racism as Large Problem

June 5, 2020 by Source

By Giovanni Russonello / New York Times / June 5, 2020

Beyond the scenes of protest and resistance playing out in cities across the country, a movement of a different sort has taken hold.

The American public’s views on the pervasiveness of racism have taken a hard leftward turn over the past few years. Never before in the history of modern polling have Americans expressed such widespread agreement that racial discrimination plays a role in policing — and in society at large.

Driven by the Black Lives Matter movement, this shift has primed the country for a new groundswell — one that has quickly earned the sympathy of most Americans, polling shows. As a result, in less than two weeks, it has already forced local governments and national politicians to make tangible policy commitments.

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A Mother’s Dilemma About Guns in Her Daughters’ Houses

June 5, 2020 by Judi Curry

By Judi Cury (written on June 4 )

As a mother of three, grandmother of 18 (including 5 “greats”) and as an opponent of people owning guns for reasons other than hunting, I am faced with something I never thought I would have to reckon with in my lifetime.

I can already hear people saying “what about the 2nd amendment?” and my answer is that that amendment was written a long time ago, when carrying a gun was a safety measure. I have never been able to fathom people carrying rifles, for example, for purposes other than hunting for food to put on the table. I am violently opposed to killing animals for trophies; I am opposed to people killing people as well. I am against most guns of all kinds.

Two things happened today that have caused me unrest – along with the Corona Virus, and the horrible murder of George Floyd. I received the following message this evening:

“Tomorrow is National Gun Violence Awareness Day, when people across the country will wear orange to show that they are part of the fight against gun violence in America.”

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Veterans and G.I. Rights Groups Condemn Use of National Guard in George Floyd Protests as Some G.I’s Refuse to Go

June 5, 2020 by Source

The people who do G.I. hot-line counseling across the country, veterans’ groups and G.I. rights organizations are condemning the use of the National Guard in the George Floyd protests occurring nationwide. Meanwhile, some G.I.s are telling these counselors they will refuse to comply with orders directing them to go to the cities where protests are happening.

Here is the statement by the the Military Law Task Force of the National Lawyers Guild:

Statement opposing use of National Guard against anti-racist protests

The Military Law Task Force of the National Lawyers Guild strongly condemns the use of National Guard and active duty troops to police anti-racist protesters. ,

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Ocean Beach Paddle Out for Peace and Unity in Solidarity with Black Lives Matter – Sunday, June 7

June 5, 2020 by Staff

On Sunday, June 7, there is a paddle out in Ocean Beach for Peace and Unity in solidarity with Black Lives Matter. It’s at 9 am at the OB Pier near the front of the Lifeguard Station.

It’s being hosted by a group called We Be OB and here is what their facebook says:

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Death of Skateboarder on Voltaire in Ocean Beach May Have Been Hit and Run

June 5, 2020 by Staff

A skateboarder was found dead in the street on the 4500 block of Voltaire Street in OB around 10:30 pm Thursday evening. And as of the latest report from 10News, it may have been a hit and run.

Police and media initially reported the person was a “pedestrian” with “a crumpled skateboard nearby.”

San Diego police were called to the site after a call came in around 10:30 that there was a man lying in the street.

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Thousands March From Downtown to North Park in Latest George Floyd Protest

June 4, 2020 by Staff

Check out these photos, taken around 7:15 pm tonight in North Park. Thousands marched from downtown near the SDPD station up to North Park and along University Avenue.

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After Protests, County Sheriffs and Most San Diego Law Enforcement Now Ban the Carotid Restraint

June 4, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

After six days of protest in San Diego and a week and half across the nation, the San Diego Sheriff’s Department and many local law enforcement agencies up and down San Diego County announced Wednesday they would immediately ban the use of the carotid restraint. Two days earlier the San Diego Police Department stated its officers would no longer use the chokehold or neck hold.
Those agencies are:

  • Carlsbad Police Department
  • Chula Vista Police Department
  • Coronado Police Department
  • El Cajon Police Department
  • Escondido Police Department
  • La Mesa Police Department
  • National City Police Department
  • Oceanside Police Department
  • San Diego Community College Police Department
  • San Diego County Sheriff’s Department
  • San Diego Harbor Police Department
  • San Diego Police Department
  • San Diego State University Police Department
  • San Diego Unified School District Police Department
  • University of California San Diego Police Department
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Port to Begin ‘Replenishing’ Sand at Kellogg Beach in Point Loma June 8 – Where’s the Sand Coming From?

June 4, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

UPDATE: Tracy Spahr – Public & Media Relations Principal, Marketing & Communications for the Port, responded: “The Port reviewed a variety of sands and selected a sand of a quality, color and texture that closely matches the current sand at Kellogg Beach. The sand will be coming from East County Sand, LLC based in Lakeside, CA. The Port also received a permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and a water quality certification from the Regional Water Quality Control Board for this project.

We just received a press statement from the Port of San Diego announcing the Port will begin to replenish the sand at Kellogg Beach beginning on or near June 8. They expect the project to be completed by July.

Okay. Well, the main question residents and environmentalists should be asking is “where is the sand coming from?”

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‘All Chill on the Western Front’ of OB

June 4, 2020 by Staff

The roving OB Rag reporter sent this brief pictorial in, with pics taken on Tuesday, June 2, the first day of sun-bathing and sitting on the beach.

He reported it was all chill.

“Groups of people were chillin’ and maintaining physical-distance between groups though some groups were probably not people from the same household.

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Sixth Day of George Floyd Protests in San Diego – Including in Midway, OB, Mira Mesa, Broadway Heights – and Paddle Out in Encinitas

June 4, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

Wednesday, June 3 was the sixth straight day of protests in San Diego County over the George Floyd murder. All were peaceful and all were respectful of this local and national moment of push for needed change.

The protests included a march from the Midway area into Ocean Beach, one in Mira Mesa, a vigil in Broadway Heights and a massive paddle-out at Moonlight Beach in Encinitas.

A mostly young crowd rallied in the Midway Area for Black Lives Matter and several San Diego Police officers joined them in prayer; the crowd chanted, “SDPD! SDPD!” and the officers actually led the marchers through the area. The marchers continued into Ocean Beach and down several streets around Newport Avenue, past boarded up windows of businesses, some of whose owners sprayed supportive statements (some would call them “graffiti”) onto those boards.

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Why Is the California National Guard in San Diego?

June 4, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

The California National Guard deployed 200 troopers in San Diego County over the last 20 hours or so. One hundred are assigned to La Mesa and another hundred to the County Sheriff’s Department. Sheriff Bill Gore is the one that requested them. Governor Newsom authorized their deployment.

From my knowledge of San Diego history, this could be the very first time National Guard soldiers have been assigned to San Diego County. They weren’t deployed during the infamous San Diego Free Speech fight in 1912-1913, the labor strife during the thirties, nor were they deployed in San Diego during the social turbulence of the sixties and 1970s, and not during the May 1970 student rebellion, which in part shut down the gates to the Naval base on Catalina Boulevard.

So why are they here now?

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OB Farmers Market Cancelled Due to Rumor of Protests

June 3, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

The OB Mainstreet Association has been asked by the San Diego Police Department to cancel the Farmers Market scheduled for today, Wednesday, June 3.

Here is what we found on a facebook page:

No one knows anything about the protests. Don’t know who’s is planning it. Don’t know if it will even happen. But after all this hard word to reopen the market, now this.

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San Diego Protests for George Floyd Continue for 5th Day

June 3, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

Protests in San Diego for George Floyd continued for the fifth day in a row on Tuesday, June 2, with the largest demonstration in downtown San Diego.

Dozens of people had been protesting in the afternoon, then joined others for a short rally at Sixth and Laurel in Balboa Park. There they spread out on the grass and listened to a few speeches, keeping proper physical-social distance.

Around 6 pm the crowd marched into downtown, where they were joined by another group. After marching down Broadway and through downtown streets, the combined crowd of at least 500 then rallied at the County Administration Building. At one point on Broadway, the marchers were being pushed along by a phalanx of police SUVs. Participants said the crowd was larger than the day previous,

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La Mesa Grandmother Out of Coma After Being Hit by Police Projectile at Protest – Calls for Officer to Be ID’ed and Charged

June 3, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

In all the initial stories and reports of what happened in La Mesa at the George Floyd protest in front of the police department, the subsequent bank burnings and lootings, and then the clean-up afterwards, a key story of a La Mesa grandmother almost being fatally injured or blinded by a police projectile wasn’t present.

Now, it has emerged. Leslie Furcron, a 59 La Mesa resident was hit between the eyes by a police rubber bullet and severely knocked momentarily unconscious. She was on her cellphone when the incident occurred and was not engaging in anything but peacefully protesting. Bystanders rushed her to the hospital where she was at first placed in an induced coma. Police did not call her an ambulance or otherwise respond to her injury

Furcon has now come out of the coma and her family called Tuesday for the officer involved to be publicly identified, fired and charged with attempted murder. There is a gruesome cell phone video

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Ocean Beach Planning Board to Review Mayor’s Controversial ‘Complete Communities’ Proposal

June 3, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

Tonight Wednesday, June 3, the Ocean Beach Planning Board is to review – as their top agenda item – something called “Complete Communities” – a controversial proposal put forth by Mayor Kevin Faulconer. The meeting will be held electronically via WebEX. In order to “participate” one needs to register for the meeting – here -and if one wishes to make a comment they need to email it to the Planning Board (email below). The meeting begins sharply at 6 pm.

You can find all the information about Complete Communities on the City’s website here and here.

Other items on the agenda includes a review and vote on the OBPB’s Annual Report for 2019-20 (see link), appointments to the Transportation Committee and the city will make a presentation on the Alvarado Second Pipeline extension and possible construction impacts to local residents and businesses.

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George Floyd Protest in San Diego – Today, June 2 – Balboa Park

June 2, 2020 by Staff

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Anybody Else Upset that Trump Just Threatened America With Martial Law?

June 2, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

About 6:30 pm ET yesterday, June 1, 2020, President Trump – speaking for the first time publicly about the George Floyd protests – and calling himself “the president of law and order,” threatened Americans with martial law. Trump said if the governors and mayors around the country couldn’t “dominate” the protesters – who Trump called “domestic terrorists” – that he would send in the US military into those states and cities.

Because “our nation has been gripped by professional anarchists, violent mobs, arsonists, looters, criminals, rioters, Antifa and others,” and because “a number of state and local governments have failed to take necessary action to safeguard their residents,” he would deploy the US military. “If a city or state refuses to take the actions that are necessary to defend the life and property of their residents, then I will deploy the United States military and quickly solve the problem for them.”

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In Response to Protests San Diego Police End Use of Choke-Hold, Sheriffs Continue to Use It

June 2, 2020 by Frank Gormlie

The San Diego Police Department announced Monday, June 1 that it is immediately ending its use of the chock-hold or carotid restraint, a move motivated by the George Floyd protests, both locally and nationally.

San Diego Sheriffs will continue to utilize it on suspects, as Sheriff Bill Gore told KUSI Tuesday.

The San Diego Union-Tribune quoted numerous elected officials and the police chief praising the decision. Mayor Kevin Faulconer, at a press conference Monday, stated SDPD officers “will be stopping the use of the carotid technique, effective immediately.”

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