Editorials

The opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of East County Magazine.

READER'S EDITORIAL: DENYING PATIENTS ACCESS TO EMERGENCY MEDICATIONS

 

By Ryan Roper, San Diego

May 7, 2016 (San Diego) -- The triage, treatment and transport emergency medical service practitioners provide can often be the difference between life and death for patients with a medical emergency. The unique nature of emergency medical services is unlike other health care services governed by the Controlled Substances Act.

READER’S EDITORIAL: ASHES OF HATE WILL REIGN ON AMERICA

 

By Daniel J. Smiechowski

May 2, 2016 (San Diego) -- The Treaty of Versailles was signed with almost no German participation on June 28, 1919.  The Great War had ended bringing embarrassment and hard financial times to a once proud nation. German leaders were looking for scapegoats and they were easy to find. Jews, homosexuals, Poles and even the disabled were targeted for extinction during the ensuing 25 years. Sound familiar?

The French have an old saying:“The more things change, the more things stay the same.” The candidacy of presidential contender Donald Trump is not one of assimilation but rather one of annihilation.  It is a furtive movement to maintain America’s white identity. His followers disavow political ideology in favor of a dream of what not America could be but rather what America was several generations ago.

READER'S EDITORIAL: WHERE HAS ALL THE CREAM GONE?

 

By Leon Thompson

May 2, 2016 (East County) – My earliest childhood memories are of my grandfather’s dairy farm in Solway, Minnesota, where I learned to love cows.  The sign on the barn read “Our Cows Are Outstanding In Their Field.”  We moved to Poway in 1959 less than two blocks from the DeJong Dairy.  I naturally got up at 5:00 a.m. to help with chores and was rewarded with a giant breakfast with the DeJong family and bottles of fresh milk to take home. 

READER’S EDITORIAL: TAXPAYER WATCHDOG: "I WON’T SIGN THE CHARGERS’ MEASURE BECAUSE IT IS NOT A GOOD DEAL FOR TAXPAYERS"

 

By April Boling

April 24, 2016 (San Diego's East County) - Voters asked to help qualify the Chargers proposal for the November election should know a few things before deciding to sign.

READER’S EDITORIAL: AN OPEN LETTER TO GILLESPIE FIELD NEIGHBORS REGARDING SENATOR ANDERSON’S DISRESPECT OVER OUR CONCERNS

 

By Sue Strom, ASAP Steering Committee

April 24, 2016 (El Cajon) - A number of residents recently attended a community coffee for State Senator Joel Anderson.  It was hosted by El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells on Thursday, April 14th, 2016.

READER’S EDITORIAL: ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS

 

By Dan Jauregui, aka “Boltman”

On April 4th, selected Chargers fans met with Dean Spanos and other Chargers representatives for an hour and a half to discuss a ballot initiative to fund building a stadium.  Dan Jauregui, better known as “Boltman”, was among the invited guests. Here are his observations.

April 9, 2016 (San Diego) -- The start of the meeting entailed in-depth information regarding the Goldman Sachs finance plan. We fans received a better understanding in layman’s terms of all the players and entities involved.

READERS’ EDITORIAL: OUR CULTURE IS NOT FOR SALE

 

By students at Mount Miguel High School in Spring Valley and East County Youth Coalition members trained as advocates to educate the community about risks of underage drinking and how they can be prevented.

April 5, 2016 (Spring Valley) -- What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear Cinco de Mayo?

READER’S EDITORIAL: FLETCHER HILLS RESIDENTS CONCERNED ABOUT BREWERY AND NOISE

 

By Susan Brinchman

March 31, 2016 (La Mesa) - Depot Springs Beer Company is apparently planning an outdoor music venue and brewery/restaurant in Fletcher Hills, La Mesa, at Dallas St and Fletcher Parkway. According to promotional literature, the La Mesa Planning Commission appears to have recently approved an amphitheater with live (outdoor) music until midnight, daily. The promotional literature further portrays this brewery and plan as being "family-friendly," but some nearby residents are upset.

READER’S EDITORIAL: CALIFORNIA VOTING RIGHTS ACT (CVRA)

 

By Jim Stieringer, Member, Governing Board, Grossmont Union High School District

March 31, 2016 (San Diego’s East County)--Like my board colleagues I enthusiastically endorse the concept of the California Voting Rights Act (CVRA) and our unanimous vote to implement it in the Grossmont Union High School District.

I recall that our board members’ decision to implement “area” election precincts was engendered solely by a desire to implement CVRA and to obviate a threatened lawsuit if we failed to do so. I believe that no one was motivated by a desire to deny a colleague an opportunity to compete in the 2016 election. Further I am unaware of any direction to our demographers other than to create a minority district that gave consideration to all communities of interest. Each of the three proposed maps accomplished those goals.

READERS EDITORIAL: STOP GROSSMONT'S GERRYMANDERING! SPEAK OUT AT COUNTY’S ALPINE FORUM APRIL 4

 

 

By George Barnett

March 19, 2016 (Alpine) – Grossmont Union High School District Trustees are in the process of gerrymandering its voter district. Grossmont intends to move from a process of electing trustees on an “at large” basis to a re-districting to a by-trustee basis.  This means that individual communities such as that across Alpine, Blossom Valley, Harbison Canyon – for example – could elect their own chosen representative on the Grossmont board.  Grossmont is being forced into re-districting by threat of separate law suits. 

Fundamentally, it is a sound idea.  However, Grossmont also decided to do this without voter input or approval.  The scheme of re-districting that Grossmont has selected is gerrymandering and results in:

READER'S EDITORIAL: TRIBES ASK SUPPORT FOR SANDERS' BILL TO PROTECT SACRED OAK FLAT FROM DESTRUCTION BY FOREIGN-OWNED MINING GIANTS

 

By Stephen Fox



March 4, 2016 (Oak Flat, Az.) -- Tribes nation-wide and other Americans across the country deeply appreciate Senator Bernie Sanders' efforts in the U.S. Senate to protect tribal sacred land in Arizona known as Oak Flat, located on U.S. Forest Service land, from destruction by foreign-owned mining conglomerates Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton through their U.S. limited liability company Resolution Copper Mining.

READER’S EDITORIAL: BROWN ACT REQUIREMENTS AND TIME LIMITS ON SPEAKING

 

 

An open letter to the Grossmont Union High School District Board regarding its ban on any public citizen speaking over 3 minutes total for all agenda items combined

By Nick Marinovich, former member, Citizens Bond Oversight Committee for the Grossmont Union High School District

February 20, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- As a Citizen who actively participates in the governance process, I have indicated at several board meetings my frustration with not being able to adequately make my points when there is a three minute total time any one Citizen can speak at a regular board meeting. Government Code Section 54954.3 states:

(a) Every agenda for regular meetings shall provide an opportunity for members of the public to directly address the legislative body on any item of interest to the public, before or during the legislative body’s consideration of the item, that is within the subject matter jurisdiction of the legislative body, provided that no action shall be taken on any item not appearing on the agenda unless the action is otherwise authorized by subdivision (b) of Section 54954.2.

 (b) The legislative body of a local agency may adopt reasonable regulations to ensure that the intent of subdivision (a) is carried out, including, but not limited to, regulations limiting the total amount of time allocated for public testimony on particular issues and for each individual speaker.

 (c) The legislative body of a local agency shall not prohibit public criticism of the policies, procedures, programs, or services of the agency, or of the acts or omissions of the legislative body. Nothing in this subdivision shall confer any privilege or protection for expression beyond that otherwise provided by law.

READER’S EDITORIAL: WOMEN’S LIVES AT RISK

By Maxine Johnson

January 30, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) — The “pro-life” movement ignores the lives of expectant mothers—and that’s both heartless and dangerous. Nobody should force their religious views onto a woman with a life-threatening pregnancy, or a woman who learns her child has an incurable, debilitating defect such as the thousands of women in Brazil who contracted Zika virus and gave birth to babies with severe brain damage.  In some Latin American countries, women have no choice even if they contract Zika in the first trimester – since abortion is illegal but the disease is rampant.  

READER’S EDITORIAL: OPEN LETTER TO BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT: DO YOUR JOB TO PROTECT OUR PUBLIC LANDS FROM PRIVATE INTERESTS

 

After a takeover of a federal wildlife refuge in Oregon by armed militia members, local wildlife biologist Renée Owens has sent an open letter to Bureau of Land Management directors and staff in Burns, Oregon.

"Your inaction to stop them only emboldens such criminal activity, and makes you vulnerable to a lawsuit by others such as myself whose public land rights and interests have been violated," she writes. 

Below is the full text of her letter:

READER’S EDITORIAL: NOW IS THE TIME TO WELCOME REFUGEES, NOT SHUT THEM OUT

 

By Rebecca Paida

December 13, 2015 (San Diego)--Now is the time to welcome refugees, not shut them out. Given the recent controversy over refugees, I am compelled to write about my refugee story and call on cities to create an inclusive Citizen Commissions on Refugee and Immigrant Affairs.

READER’S EDITORIAL: INNOCENT LIVES LOST DUE TO POLITICS OF HATE

 

 

By Madge Will

 

Photos: Murdered victims of massacre at Planned Parenthood in Colorado include young mother, Iraq War veteran, and police officer

December 1, 2015 (San Diego)—Victims of the latest mass shooting at a Colorado Planned Parenthood clinic weren’t abortion doctors or  patients. Ke’Arre Marcell Stewart, an Iraq War veteran, had just learned he was about be a father for the third time. Jennifer Markovsky, a young mother of two, came to support a friend. Garrett Swasey, a police officer who responded to the attack, also died. Another dozen were injured by bullets fired randomly, some outside the clinic’s walls.

All who have spewed hate under the guise of “pro-life” share blame for the loss of those three innocent lives. 

These young people's futures were snuffed out by a deranged gunman who was likely incited to violence by the hateful rhetoric of politicians, religious zealots and  media personalities vilifying Planned Parenthood and all who work there or come seeking healthcare services.

READER'S EDITORIAL: CHARGERS AND RAIDERS TOSS HAIL MARY

 

By Tony Manolatos

November 11, 2015 (San Diego)--With Mayor Kevin Faulconer in New York speaking to NFL owners about the City & County's stadium plan in Mission Valley, and building on momentum that has been growing in San Diego for months, the Chargers and Raiders have thrown a Hail Mary to try and shift support to their Carson stadium project.

READER’S EDITORIAL: NEW HOUSE SPEAKER PAUL RYAN GOES AFTER POOR PEOPLE’S MONEY

 

By Tommy Tidrow

November 8, 2015 (Washington D. C.) – New House Speaker Paul Ryan and his friends in Congress (most of whom have signed the Republican operative Grover Norquist’s “No New Taxes” pledge) have come up with a plan to fund a highway bill by privatizing the part of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tasked with collecting back taxes from individuals who owe as little as $200 dollars in unpaid income tax. 

The measure would have private collection agencies act on behalf of the government to collect delinquent taxes.  These are the people who have been sued for predatory practices, harassment and misrepresentation for years.    

These debt collectors will not be going after billionaires and corporations who put $150,000,000,000 Billion dollars in off-shore tax havens like the Cayman Islands.  Nor will there be any reform to the tax code that allows giant corporations like General Electric to pay no taxes at all.

READER’S EDITORIAL: THE STORY OF A FLORIDA COMPANY TAKEOVER OF JACUMBA’S WATER

 

By Howard W Cook, former chair, Jacumba Sponsor Group

Photo: Lake Jacumba

 

November 1, 2015 (Jacumba Hot Springs)--A massive project poses an unprecedented risk to Jacumba Hot Springs' water supply. 

BACKGROUND

Jacumba Hot Springs is an old town going back to 1860 and blessed with a productive hot spring and several other good wells. It is located 70 miles East of San Diego on Old Highway 80 in a valley spread out on both sides of the border. Its high desert transition zone location at 2800 feet just before nearby Interstate 8 plunges to the desert seem an unlikely place for a water takeover by Nextera, a Florida Green Energy developer.

READER'S EDITORIAL: BLACK JURORS NEED NOT APPLY

 

By Roderick T. Long, Creative Commons license

October 27, 2015 (San Diego's East County) - If you’re black, you may have trouble getting on to a jury.

The way in which jurors are chosen in the United States is intended to ensure an unbiased jury; and part of that process is the right of “peremptory challenge,” by which the prosecution and the defense are each allowed to reject a certain number of potential jurors without having to prove them unfit. But some prosecutors, especially in the southern states, appear to be using this procedure not to prevent bias but to guarantee it. (“Exclusion of Blacks From Juries Raises Renewed Scrutiny,” New York Times, 16 August 2015).

READER'S EDITORIAL: WHEN THE SERVANTS BECOME THE MASTERS

 

By Sylvia Sullivan

October 22, 2015 (La Mesa) -- Anger and frustration filled the overflowing room of irate ratepayers at the recent Helix Water District meeting.

The meeting started off tense but restrained as the public sat politely listening to the almost hour long staff presentation. When told the consultant, from Raftelis Financial Consultants, Inc. would make another presentation the people had enough. The discussion became as heated as the temperature in the room.

READER'S EDITORIAL: LAST NIGHT'S BOARD MEETING ON HELIX WATER DISTRICT WATER RATES 5-YEAR PLAN

 

By Kathleen Coates-Hedberg, Helix Water District board member

October 10, 2015 (La Mesa)--I got to the Board Room at 4:30p.m. and the parking lot was filling up and I parked on the street. When the meeting started at 5 p.m. it was a full house, every seat was filled and the people were lined outside the door and people were standing in rows near on the sides. At least 150 members of the public were in attendance, several TV crews (KFMB, KUSI & FOX that I saw) and we all echoed the pledge of the allegiance to the flag together. I was hopeful and optimistic that the meeting was going to go well...oh how wrong I was.

READER'S EDITORIAL: SHOULD AN ELECTED OFFICIAL'S RELIGION TRUMP THE CONSTITUTION?

 

by Joel A. Harrison, PhD, MPH

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof (1st Amendment, US Constitution)

September 8, 2015 (San Diego)-- A Kentucky county clerk, Kim Davis has become a symbol of religious opposition to same-sex marriage after she was jailed Thursday for defying a federal court order to issue licenses to gay couples, the Union-Tribune reported.

READER'S EDITORIAL: WHY PUBLIC EMPLOYEES SHOULD FOLLOW THE LAW, NOT THEIR PRIVATE RELIGIOUS BELIEFS

 

By June Wise

September 3, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) -- A Kentucky county clerk, Kim Davis, has stirred controversy for defying a federal court order to issue marriage licenses after the Supreme Court declared marriage a constitutional right for same-sex couples. She claims giving gay couples licenses to wed would violate her religious beliefs, yet she has refused to resign. Today, a  judge  ordered her jailed for contempt of court.

If government  workers  could refuse to  serve the public  anytime  a law conflicts with their private religious views, that would be a dangerous and trouble-prone path.  Divorce, birth control, war, and blood transfusions are all prohibited in some religions.  Some faiths ban immodest dress, adultery, consumption of caffeine or alcohol, musical instruments, celebrating birthdays, serving certain foods, and seeking psychiatric care.  

Should public employees in jobs with responsibilities for such matters be able to refuse to follow laws governing all of these issues and more?

READER’S EDITORIAL: VALHALLA HIGH SCHOOL HAS WAITED 40 YEARS FOR CLASSROOM IMPROVEMENTS

Alpine lawsuit unsuccessful in attempting to block needed upgrades at Valhalla

By Mary Beth Kastan

September 2, 2015 (Rancho San Diego)--Students returning to Valhalla High School in Rancho San Diego will be joined on campus by some unusual guests: construction crews with heavy equipment.

Despite the noise and dust, we’re excited to see a long-awaited campus modernization project finally underway. Thanks to bond funding provided by East County voters through Proposition U, the 49 classrooms in our 155,000-square-foot main building will be fully renovated for the first time since the school opened more than 40 years ago.

ON THE TRAIL WITH GARRY MCCLINTOCK: A MEMOIR

 

By Marty Jorgensen

September 1, 2015 (Descanso) -- When I think of Garry McClintock, what I will remember more than anything else is his attitude towards life.  He was always upbeat and positive, and full of curiosity of the world around him.  He had the inner and spiritual strength to continue to carry that on despite his long illness. When you spoke with Garry you always felt that he was really interested in what you had to say, and you always seemed to go away better for it.  His shop was always somewhere that you could not only buy a saddle or tack or have it repaired but a place where you could find out what was happening, in Descanso or in the equestrian community.  It was as much a social center as it was a saddle shop.  And I cannot remember him in any conversation ever saying a bad thing about anybody.

READER’S EDITORIAL: THE FUTURE OF EL MONTE VALLEY

 

 

Editor’s note: This essay paints a picture of what El Monte Valley could look like in the future; Sunrise Power Link has been built; solar and sand-mining projects are planned or proposed.

By Rob Foster 

August 26, 2015 (Lakeside)--Early mornings, I like to walk outside with coffee in hand and sit down facing the morning sun. Gazing northeast the scar left from the Sunrise project are clearly seen. Sun lit power towers draped with wires and ten acres of stripped land below scenic El Capitan Mtn. SDG&E promised the ten acre site would be returned to its original undisturbed state. SDG&E destroys the ecosystem leaving an ugly scare in a matter of months. Thank you for the reminder of a broken promise.

 As I look east,  a glare catches my eyes.

Pages