Vol. 10, No. 4 – Nov 22 – Dec 5, 2017 – Opinion/Editorial

•  Some of our readers are confused about whether we can use their names in the Breeze. We, in fact, do not need permission to do so. Also, in most cases, when a person is outside – in the public – we do not need permission to include a photo of them. The exception is if the individual is under the age of 18, then we need parental approval.

Newspapers are, by definition, designed to serve the public’s interest. “Put simply, the public interest is about what matters to everyone in society. It is about the common good, the general welfare and the security and well-being of everyone in the community we serve.”

If you think about this, we, and every other newspaper would need to get permission from every person mentioned in every article, press release, police report and photo.

We, of course, don’t use a name in a manner that might create a liability problem. We can’t (or shouldn’t) make a definitive statement such as, “xxxxxx xxxxx killed his neighbor” unless that individual has been convicted of the crime.

•  In our “Mailbox” section there is a letter taking me to task for some of my comments (please read it). I really appreciate getting emails from readers that don’t agree with me.

I wish that I received more that took me to task for what I say. Very important in a free society that we can discuss things in a civil manner, especially in the press. Except, of course the “fake news” about our president.

The only thing that I ask is that you tell me why you think I’m wrong or I won’t print it. If you think my opinion on a subject is wrong I want to hear yours.

•  The West County Emergency winter shelter for homeless people is scheduled to open Dec. 15 at the National Guard Armory until March 31, at 1270 Arundell Ave. All people deserve at least this minimum protection during what can be a cold winter. Nobody deserves to be left out in the cold/rain. Try it a few times and see how it feels.

•  Speaking of the homeless, many of these people are clinically mentally ill. I hear people asking why we allow the mentally ill on our streets? Why don’t we just arrest them and put them in jail? Aren’t they all violent?

According to the UC Firearm Violence Research Center, no more than 4-5% of all violence is committed by the mentally ill.

There are very specific laws regarding how folks can be incarcerated against their will, especially the mentally ill, and for very good reason.

Section 5150 is a section of the California Welfare and Institutions Code the (Lanterman–Petris–Short Act or “LPS”) which authorizes a qualified officer or clinician to involuntarily confine a person suspected to have a mental disorder that makes them a danger to themselves, a danger to others, and/or gravely disabled. A qualified officer, which includes any California peace officer, as well as any specifically-designated county clinician, can request the confinement after signing a written declaration stating the psychiatric diagnosis that the diagnosing medical professional believes to be the cause or reason why they believe the patient to be “a danger to themselves or others” or the psychiatric disorder that has rendered the patient incapable of making their own medical treatment decisions.

Basically speaking, a danger to themselves means they have attempted suicide, a danger to others doesn’t mean yelling at people or even threatening to harm them. It means physically assaulting them, and gravely disabled means not even able to feed themselves to the point if left alone they could die.

•  On Nov.12, the Cave, which is located inside Ventura Wine Company, held their Holiday Wine Tasting. The event featured wine tasting of over 100 wines, appetizers, music by the Vanise Terry Band and a keepsake wine glass. 250 tickets were sold, and it appeared that everyone showed up. The Cave is located at 4435 McGrath St.

• By now, I assume you know that 3 freshman members of the UCLA basketball team shoplifted (I don’t need to say that they were suspected of this crime because they admitted doing it). They took items from several stores while the team was in China for a game.

One of the players originally stated, “I ain’t (I just added ain’t to my computer dictionary so it doesn’t highlight it) got nothing to say.” So much for student-athletes.

And his dad said, “Everyone’s making it a big deal. It ain’t that big a deal.” Good grief his son is representing his family, his school and his country and his dad thinks it “ain’t” that big a deal. Would it be a big deal to him if his son had used a gun to hold up the stores?

UCLA has announced that it has indefinitely suspended the players from the team.

UCLA’s Coach, Steve Alford, said the three players will not participate in workouts or practices, will not travel with the team and will not dress for home games during the suspension, which is indefinite because the school is going through its legal process with the three students.

I certainly hope that their punishment from the school is more severe than a brief suspension.

•  Ventura has now shut down the entire main building at the Pierpont Inn Wyndham Garden, located at 550 Sanjon Rd. The lobby, Austen’s Restaurant, offices and other uses are located in this building. The rooms remain open.

It has been over two years since the City first red-tagged (means shutting it down) a portion of the main building because DKN Hotels that own the Inn started construction without obtaining the required permits.

It is just amazing to me how a large company can be so clueless.

This means that the restaurant will miss income from Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s eve.

The Pierpont Inn is Landmark No. 80 on the city’s registry of historic locations which makes this an even more serious situation.

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