Since California has had strict protections for keeping government open to the people. That’s why we were shocked to see that Gilroy’s Mayor Roland Velasco was giving his state of the city speech to an audience that paid $30 apiece at a Chamber of Commerce fundraiser to hear it last week, and with him were four other city council members.
Iceland, which had one of the worst epidemics of teen drinking and drug use 20 years ago, has had a huge turnaround, largely by using things we consider common sense.
The California Supreme Court last week put a sock in the argument that it’s OK for elected officials and government employees to keep citizens out of the loop by using private email and texting accounts to conduct the public’s business.
With all the money that’s spent in our county on flood prevention and control, it’s reasonable to expect that there would be some good plans to prevent a Katrina-style urban flood. Judging by what occurred to residents in neighborhoods to the north—in a modern city of a million people—it’s safe to conclude that local communities are not well prepared for large-scale natural disasters.
Water and life down the drain
I finally made it to Coyote Reservoir this past October, completing the circuit of Santa Clara County’s major water storage facilities. It’s a circuit I began many years ago.
Gavilan College is a gem for Gilroy and the surrounding counties and after hearing a report from new President Kathleen Rose we are encouraged with the way the school is growing in new courses, new buildings and a strong spirit of social justice.
Don Christopher wears a crisp, dark shirt embroidered with a 60-year medallion over the pocket. It commemorates a proud achievement for a business, but dresses a walking portal to history with a encyclopedic recall, a window into an how the global agricultural revolution underwent transformation during the second half of the 20th Century, and in Don’s case, transformed a community.
Pro: Marc Perkel You know you're in a Free Country when you can burn the Flag. President Elect Donald Trump says the people should lose their citizenship if you burn the Flag. Unfortunately Trump doesn't know enough about America to understand what free speech is all about. Trump doesn't have the right to summarily override the Constitution and rule by fiat that America will have reduced rights once he becomes King. America is a country of the people, for the people and by the people. The people are the fourth and most important branch of government. Some say that our Second Amendment right arose out of the need to overthrow the government by force should the government forget that its job is the serve and not rule the people. Our right to burn the flag comes from those same principles but had the advantage of not killing people in the process. When the people can burn the flag it signifies the dominance of the people over the government. When we can't it signifies the dominance of the government over the people. Russians can't burn the flag but we can because we are a free nation. Having said that, I encourage people to not burn the flag in response to Trump. Trump is just being a troll and he wants to create division between people to distract attention away from the fact that his buddies in Russia helped get him elected. So even though you have the right, don't burn the flag because Trump wants you to. If you are a patriot and you love America and you believe Americans are better united than divided then go hug a liberal and give a conservative a big wet kiss on the mouth and show the Donald that we the people understand the American dream, even if he doesn't get it. Gilroyan Marc Perkel has become a national voice for protecting people’s rights, even the right to burn an American flag. See him debate FOX News’s Tucker Carlson here: http://insider.foxnews.com/2016/11/29/flag-burning-advocate-donald-trump-marc-perkel-government Against: Mark Turner My father was a United States Marine. He was proud of his military service and of his service to his countryman.His service helped shape his view, his values and his pride in this great nation. He instilled those values and that pride in his three boys.Growing up I can remember my Dad proudly flew the American flag in front of our house every day. He taught us to have a deep abiding respect for America's veterans and military personnel and his actions showed us to have high regard for the flag. Throughout our history brave Americans fought to gain or to defend freedom and liberty. In each of those conflicts the American flag was either carried in, raised in victory, worn on the uniforms of the soldiers, or on the minds of those defending the Stars and Stripes, the Banner of America. Yes, I believe America is, as President Reagan used to say, the last best hope of man on earth.This, “great experiment,” which was birthed in a small dusty hall in Philadelphia nearly 240 years ago, launched a nation with immense faith, incredible responsibility and a position of high calling.Our position in the world didn't just happen, but was fought for by brave soldiers throughout our history. The same hallowed flag that men and women willingly go to battle for, drapes the casket of those who laid down their lives defending her. Just because protestors have the ‘’right’’ to burn the flag, doesn’t mean burning the flag is right. Some see the flag as a symbol to burn, as for me, it’s a symbol that ignites a fire within me for a great nation that John Winthrop referred to as “a shining city upon a hill.”To those who take pride in exercising your free speech right as you light the flag on fire, men and women in our armed forces will continue to fight for that right, protect the homeland and make incredible sacrifices on your behalf. That in itself deserves some respect and appreciation. Although he hails from Morgan Hill, Mark Turner spends most of his life in Gilroy as President of the Chamber of Commerce and formerly, as a pastor. The Gilroy Dispatch seeks your editorials, comments and letters. Send them to [email protected]