Skip navigation.
Home

Editorials




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

READER'S EDITORIAL: A LEVEL PLAYING FIELD

 

The first in a series of essays from No Term Limits in La Mesa to examine the underlying assumptions and principles around term limits, whether they are “needed” or work as claimed, and just what side effects they may bring with  them.

By No Term Limits in La Mesa

September 24, 2014 (La Mesa)--Proponents of term limits claim that term limits are needed because incumbent advantage makes it impossible for a challenger to win. But is this assumption really the case?

READER'S EDITORIAL: AFTER THE RHETORIC, WHAT'S THE RECORD?

 

Originally published in La Mesa Today

By Anthony D. Mc Ivor

September 19, 2014 (La Mesa)-- In November, La Mesa voters will decide whether to change the Municipal Code and put into law a significant new ordinance. The ordinance will tell us – and future generations of La Mesa voters – who we can vote for, who we can’t and when.

READER'S EDITORIAL: AN OPEN LETTER TO THE U.S. FISH & WILDLIFE SERVICE: NO "TAKE" PERMITS FOR EAGLES IN EAST COUNTY

 

By Charles and Laurie Baker, Santee

Photo: Bald eagle at Lake Cuyamaca

September 6, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)--We are writing this letter because we are opposed to the United States Fish and Wildlife Service possibly granting 30-year Bald and Golden Eagle Permits to companies who build wind and solar farms.   NO permits, especially those for 30 years, should be granted to these so-called "green" energy farms.  They harm eagles, didn't study the impacts, and violate Federal laws.

READER'S EDITORIAL: MUNICIPALITIES HAVE NO BUSINESS ENGAGING IN BUSINESS WITH RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATIONS

 

By Tom Comeau

August 30, 2014 (El Cajon)--There's always been a steady assault by religious groups of all stripes, on the separation of church and state, but what El Cajon doesn't need is for the City Council to initiate such activity as in its proposed contract with the "Rock Church" (do they worship rocks?) for the utilization of the East County Performing Arts Center (ECPAC) for religious purposes. The Council cannot dodge the issue of the church/state violation when it agrees to allow a church to utilize 'public property' for what is clearly religious purposes. Included in this agreement is the proposed erection of an additional building on 'public property' to serve the needs of this religious group, with the generous proviso that the building would revert to the city at the end of its use by the religious group.

READER'S EDITORIAL: HELICOPTERS FLYING TOO LOW

 

Photo: View of Oak Creek/Boulder Creek area taken by Cynthia Burnham from her home, where she reports seeing an SDG&E helicopter hovering "very low" for at least 10 minutes.

An open letter sent to the California Public Utilities Commission,  U.S. Forest Service/Cleveland National Forest, Congressman Duncan Hunter and Supervisor Dianne Jacob:

By Cindy Buxton

Dear CPUC, Foresters, Congressmen, and Supervisors:  

August 31, 2014 (Boulder Creek)--Several residences and visitors to the Cleveland National Forest lately between Descanso and Julian in the Boulder Creek area have complained about low flying helicopters.  These were seen hovering over people's back yards by only a few hundred feet. Subsequently we are to learn in the East County Magazine that several other residences identified the helicopters belonging to SDG&E, also experienced this to the point that horses were so frightened that they were injured.  One of the helicopters seen by several residences along Boulder Creek Road had a visible camera on the front  and apparently was not necessarily  in line with the ROW (right of way) for the TL626 line.

READER'S EDITORIAL: POLICE RESPONSE IN FERGUSON ROOTED IN SYSTEMIC VIOLENCE AND MILITARISM

 

By Brian J. Trautman

August 25, 2014 (Ferguson, Missouri)--The police response to public protests in Ferguson, Missouri in the wake of the deadly August 9 shooting of Michael Brown, Jr., an unarmed eighteen-year-old black man killed by a white police officer, was a prime illustration of the hyper-aggressive nature of policing in America today. The residents of Ferguson fed up with hostile and abusive police behavior continue to flood the streets to demand justice for Mike Brown and other victims of police brutality. They have been joined in solidarity by people of conscience in other cities (e.g., Oakland, NYC). Their anger and frustration was exacerbated by the heavy-handed tactics used against the mostly peaceful protestors in Ferguson during the first week or so of the demonstrations – tear gas, rubber bullets, smoke, deafening sirens as well as assault rifles fixed on protestors were some of the violent methods employed by law enforcement. In addition, a mandatory curfew imposed by the Missouri governor, verbal threats of physical harm from police, and arrests of journalists, among other ill-advised and counterproductive reactions, only escalated the tensions between protestors and police.

READER'S EDITORIAL: COUNTY NEEDS TO HIRE EXPERIENCED CAREER FIREFIGHTERS TO MAN RURAL STATIONS

 

Editor’s note:  This editorial was submitted by a rural firefighter who asked that his name be withheld due to fear of retaliation for speaking out on this issue that affects the safety of us all.  The editorial came in response to our story, “Why are so many fire stations closed—and what’s being done to boost staffing?” Our story revealed a shortage in volunteer firefighters paid a minimal stipend. Recruitment rates are lower than loss rates as newly trained volunteers are hired away by Cal Fire and other agencies. Read our original story here: http://www.eastcountymagazine.org/why-are-so-many-fire-stations-closed%E2%80%94and-what%E2%80%99s-being-done-county-boost-staffing  

 

August 11, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) --I think this was a great article; being in the fire service for more than 20 years I can tell you I think you missed one key area.

Trained personnel is a key part of firefighting. The county lacks the ability to retain the people they train. This means they continue to have new people that lack experience. Without experience and training you will come into a situation that you will possibly kill firefighters.

READER'S EDITORIAL: WHAT SHOULD HAPPEN AT EL CAJON'S COUNCIL MEETING THIS WEEK

 

 

By Robert Clark, El Cajon

July 21, 2014 (El Cajon)--There are three things that should happen (but probably will not) at the El Cajon City Council meeting on July 22.

READER'S EDITORIAL: A BEHIND-THE-SCENES LAND GRAB?

 

By Steve Green

“…professed “FCI supporters”  are not disclosing their current goals - regulations even more restrictive than the 1993 FCI, taking even more of our property rights.”—Steve Green 

July 6, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)--I am a property owner surrounded by the Cleveland National Forest on Boulder Creek Road. My land represents the majority portion of my personal financial holdings. Up until 1993,  county regulations allowed property owners in my area to divide their lands into 20 acre parcels. We lost this ability in 1993 when voters approved the Forest Conservation Initiative (FCI).

READER'S EDITORIAL: STOP THE UNFAIR SAN ONOFRE SETTLEMENT

 

By Ray Lutz, Citizens Oversight Projects

July 5, 2014 (El Cajon)-- Please take a look at this video presentation I created to be presented to the CPUC.  http://youtu.be/2umrwqLz_MI

The proponents of the $3.3 billion settlement proposal have met with the CPUC commissioners and their advisors in private meetings.  They would not allow me to make this power-point presentation at the recent public meeting. However, we are allowed to have private meetings of the same length as those granted to the proponents.

READER'S EDITORIAL: OPEN LETTER TO SUPERVIORS--ADOPT STAFF RECOMMENDATIONS ON FOREST CONSERVATION INITIATIVE LANDS

 

By Lou Russo



June 20, 2014 (Alpine)--I am a 10+ year resident of Alpine, an 8+ year member of the Alpine Community Planning Group (ACPG) and a 6+ year member of the San Diego Rural Fire District (SDRF) Board of Directors.

READER'S EDITORIAL: SHOULD CALIFORNIA'S POOREST SCHOOLCHILDREN BE INTEREST FREE LENDERS TO THE STATE?

 

By Gloria Roma



June 12, 2014 (San Diego)--Should California's poorest schoolchildren be the interest free lenders of first resort to the state? I don't think so, but they are. For the past 10 years, the state has been diverting the property taxes that were allocated to schools to cover the state's other obligations. Most counties still report the property taxes are going to schools, even though they are not getting there. This violation of the public trust hurts our schools and our state.

READER'S EDITORIAL: DOES WAR HAVE A FUTURE?

 

By Lawrence S. Wittner

June 12, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)--National officials certainly assume that war has a future.  According to a report by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, world military expenditures totaled nearly $1.75 trillion in 2013.  Although, after accounting for inflation, this is a slight decrease over the preceding year, many countries increased their military spending significantly, including China, Russia, and Saudi Arabia.  Indeed, 23 countries doubled their military spending between 2004 and 2013.  None, of course, came anywhere near to matching the military spending of the United States, which, at $640 billion, accounted for 37 percent of 2013’s global military expenditures.  Furthermore, all the nuclear weapons nations are currently “modernizing” their nuclear arsenals.

READER'S EDITORIAL: NEW SEXUAL ASSAULT CLIMATE SURVEY RECOMMENDATION: NOT AN EXCUSE FOR MORE ADMINISTRATIVE BLOAT

 

By Laura Finley

June 9, 2014 (San Diego)--In April 2014, the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault issued a series of recommendations for college and university campuses related to responding to and preventing sexual assault. Given that one in five college-aged women endure a sexual assault, the White House is to be applauded for prioritizing this issue and for organizing the task force. But of course, it should be so simple to recommend that campuses do the right thing.

READER’S EDITORIAL: BROWN V. BOARD OF EDUCATION AT 60: NEED FOR RECOMMITMENT TO INTEGRATION & SUPPORT FOR STUDENT ACHIEVEMENT

 

By Assemblymember Shirley N. Weber

"We must dissent from the indifference. We must dissent from the apathy. We must dissent from the fear, the hatred and the mistrust.... We must dissent because America can do better, because America has no choice but to do better." -- Thurgood Marshall

June 7, 2014 (San Diego)--On May 17th 1954, the United States Supreme Court unanimously overturned the separate but equal doctrine of the 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson decision after arguments presented by Thurgood Marshall - then a lawyer for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. The Court concluded that, in the field of public education, the doctrine of separate but equal has no place and that separate educational facilities are inherently unequal. The activism generated to enforce the Brown decision was a catalyst for the Civil Rights Movement and led to further state and federal anti-discrimination legislation.

My colleagues and I commemorated the 60th Anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education this week with a resolution as a reminder of the significance and the achievements of this Civil Rights milestone.  (View video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qq9YhN6qX70)  My hope is that we don’t let this anniversary deceive us into thinking we’ve fulfilled the hopes of Brown or that work of eliminating inequities in education is behind us.

READER'S EDITORIAL: AN APPEAL TO CALIFORNIA'S FIRE AGENCIES

 

Emphasizing home flammability, as well as vegetation management, can save more homes during wildfires.

By Richard Halsey, Director, The California Chaparral Institute

May 24, 2014 (San Diego) – Local, state, and federal fire agencies are urged to expand their fire education efforts. Currently, the primary, and sometimes the only message citizens hear is to clear native vegetation ("brush") from around their homes. While creating defensible space is a critical component of fire risk reduction, it fails to address the main reason homes burn - embers landing on flammable materials in, on, or around the home, igniting the most dangerous concentration of fuel available, the house itself.

READER'S EDITORIAL: CONTINUE GROSSMONT HOSPITAL & SHARP HEALTHCARE PARTNERSHIP: VOTE YES ON PROP H

 

By Colleen Murphy, RN

May 15, 2014 (La Mesa)--Vote Yes on Proposition H to continue one of San Diego’s and East County’s greatest success stories --Grossmont Hospital. This premier model of public/private partnership with Sharp HealthCare combines the public resources of a state-of-the-art community hospital with a nationally recognized nonprofit healthcare system.

READER'S EDITORIAL: VOTE NO ON PROPOSITION H

 

By Betty Stieringer

The physicians, nurses and technicians of Sharp HealthCare are unsurpassed in their skill, professionalism and patient care.  Why, then, is there opposition to Measure H?

READER’S EDITORIAL: GREATER DENSITIES INCREASE FIRE DANGER TO EAST COUNTY RESIDENTS

 

 

An open letter to Supervisor Dianne Jacob

By Lou Russo

Photo: Alpine fire April 14, photo by Billy Ortiz

April 14, 2014 (Alpine) -- As I watched the news today, and as I watch the City of Carlsbad news conference, a flood of memories return.  In particular, I am reminded of the Cedar fire, but also all the places currently at risk; e.g. Fallbrook, San Marcos, Bonsall, Camp Pendleton.  I spent over 20 years in that area, including years off Hwy 76 in Oceanside, near Bonsall.

Many of those cc'd on this email lived through the Viejas, Cedar, Horse, etc. fires here in Eastern Alpine; many of them lost their homes.

As I write this, Jim Easterling has forwarded to the Alpine Community Planning Gruop (ACPG) members that Alpine currently has one, let me repeat that, one fire truck left in Alpine...the rest have all left to support other agencies.

As I type this, out my back window I can see the wind traveling west, right down the Sweetwater River canyon...which borders Cleveland National Forest and all its fuel. As I write this, there is currently a fire in Lakeside, a few exits down the freeway.

READER'S EDITORIAL: SILVER MADE THE RIGHT CALL ON DONALD STERLING

 

May 2, 2014 (Sacramento) - Assembly Member Steven Bradford (D-Gardena) issued the following statement in response to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver’s lifetime ban and $2.5 million fine against Donald Sterling:

READER'S EDITORIAL: DAVID VS. GOLIATH - THE NUCLEAR ZERO LAWSUITS

 

by Robert Dodge, MD

April 26, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) -- This past Thursday, April 24th, historic lawsuits were filed against the U.S. and the eight other Nuclear Weapons States (NWS) of the world to meet their treaty obligations to disarm by the courageous tiny island nation Republic of the Marshall Islands.

READER'S EDITORIAL: SAN DIEGANS CLOSELY WATCHING KEYSTONE PERMIT PROCESS

 

By Jeffrey Meyer

April 15, 2014 (San Diego County) - The Keystone pipeline proposal has hit a Nebraska stop sign, but it has deeper problems than right-of-way issues across the United States.  After all, the controversial proposal for transporting Alberta’s tar sands across America was never just about the pipeline.  Just ask the thousand students who rallied in front of the White House recently, who were willing to be arrested to make their point.

READER'S EDITORIAL, PART IV: CLOSING ARGUMENTS IN TRIAL OF KASSIM ALHIMIDI

 

By Robert Clark

April 14, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - On April14, evidence was completed in the murder trial of Kassim Alhimidi. Jury instructions were scheduled by Judge William McGrath for 2:30 p.m, and closing arguments will begin April 15 at 9 a.m.

READER'S EDITORIAL: DAUGHTER'S TESTIMONY RAISES QUESTIONS AT ALHIMIDI TRIAL

 

By Robert Clark

Photo: Shaima Alawadi

April 6, 2014 (El Cajon)--The body of Shaima Alawadi, 32, was found by her daughter Fatima (then 17) on March 21, 2012. She  told El Cajon police that she was asleep upstairs, heard her mother "squeal," followed by the sound of broken glass. She thought perhaps her mother had dropped a plate, and waited about ten minutes before going downstairs.

READER’S EDITORIAL: PROSECUTION’S CASE SHAKY IN ALHIMIDI MURDER TRIAL

 

By Robert Clark

April 6, 2014 (El Cajon)--The recent spate of earthquakes in our area may have been triggered by an explosion at El Cajon Superior Court on March 25, when the prosecution's case against Kassim Alhimidi blew up during a hearing concerning pre-trial motions. The trial began April 1, and testimony has strongly confirmed an opinion I formed some time ago that the evidence against Alhimidi is so shaky  an immediate acquittal would be in order.

READER'S COMMENTARY: DISTRICT ATTORNEY'S CLAIMS IN SAN DIEGO FINANCE SCANDAL ARE ABSURD

 

By Craig E. Kleffman

April 5, 2014 (San Diego County) - San Diego’s chief law enforcement officer is District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis. In 2012 she ran for Mayor. Her associate, Ernesto Encinas — a retired San Diego Detective — conspired with a foreign national to secure illegally about $200,000 in a foreign campaign contribution. Approximately $100,000 went to a campaign committee, while the other $100,000 or so funded the campaign’s online presence.

READER'S EDITORIAL: GET THE POLITICS OUT OF WIND ENERGY!

 

Originally Published in the ECOreport

by Roy L Hales

Stanford University has just published a glowing report about how Wind Farms “can provide a surplus of reliable clean energy to society.” I almost posted it. It is important to publish information that does not fit your beliefs but, in this case, I decided to voice my skepticism instead.

READER'S EDITORIAL: END OF DEBATE, LOCAL CLEAN ENERGY WILL KEEP THE LIGHTS ON

 

By Kathleen Connell

March 8, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) will soon make a decision on how to replace the power from San Onofre.  This is a decision with consequences for generations to come.  The choice is local clean energy such as rooftop solar, energy efficiency, and conservation or natural gas power plants, i.e., fossil fuel generation.  Local clean energy fights climate change, doesn’t pollute our air, already supports hundreds of well-paying local jobs, and lowers electricity bills.  Natural gas power plants ramp up greenhouse gases, worsen air quality, average only 10-20 permanent employees, and raise electricity bills for all of us because they are funded by ratepayers and cost anywhere from $1 billion to $5 billion each.  And we are shackled to these monuments of the past for decades.

READER'S EDITORIAL: WIND 2050-A DYSTOPIAN SOCIETY?

 

By Mark Duchamp, World Council For Nature

March 1, 2014 (Denmark)--The World Council for Nature (WCFN) has been informed that Danish taxpayers’ money is being spent to the tune of €2,665,688 to spy on associations and citizens’ groups of windfarm victims (present or potential). The name of the program is “Wind2050 – Multidisciplinary study on local acceptance and development of wind power projects” (1). It is administered chiefly by the Danish multinational company Vestas, the Danish government, and Denmark’s Aarlborg University. Its aim is to break the resistance of windfarm neighbors and opponents to Big Wind in Denmark and around the world. Note: in Denmark alone there are more than 200 associations of neighbors fighting the windfarm scourge, and Vestas’ profits have taken a big plunge.

READER'S EDITORIAL: WE MUST REFORM OUR LAWS TO REVIVE THE AMERICAN DREAM, ECONOMY AND MIDDLE-CLASS

 

“The most perfect political community is one in which the middle class is in control, and outnumbers both of the other classes.”-- Aristotle (384 BCE – 322 BCE) 

By Pat Zaharopoulos

February 28, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) -- A healthy democracy must have a strong middle class because the middle class stabilizes a nation and also helps its economy by buying the products made by those with capital.  But in today’s America, the rich are getting richer, the middle class is shrinking, poverty is raising and young Americans can no longer attain the American Dream.  We need a taxpayer-middle class revolt to restore a better balance of income, benefits and taxation.

Recent Editorials

Electricity Supply and Price Security, Solving Global Warming and Why the Proposed Sunrise Power Link is Not Part of the Answer

By Jim Bell

My goal in releasing this commentary is to introduce the Net-Meter Option to the public as a cost-effective way to increase local electricity supply and price security instead of investing ratepayer’s dollars into SDG&E/SEMPRA’s Sunrise Power Link, a proposed 16-story tall transmission line that SDG&E and its parent Company, SEMPRA, are pitching to the California Public Utility Commission (CPUC). If built, the Power Link transmission line would run 150 miles from San Diego to Mexicali, Mexico, running through numerous state parks, wild life habitat areas and private properties. Read More

Syndicate content