• I apologize that your favorite newspaper is a day late due to the loss of electricity. More fire coverage in Dec. 20 issue. Go to Ventura City website for current information: www.cityofventura.ca.gov/1254/Thomas-Fire
•When we heard that a fire started near Steckel Park in Santa Paula, we certainly wouldn’t have imagined that it was going to decimate so many structures across Ventura. With winds over 50 mph, fire moves too fast to manage. How sad for all the folks who lost their homes and those in the apartments who lost their belongings. I was at the fire lines where firefighters – whose job it is to fight fires – had to standby in many cases and watch as structures burned to the ground. And, it is heartbreaking to see the Botanical Gardens, with so much love, money and energy poured in, now gone.
• The City Council is still dealing with how to determine the boundaries for council members that will need be elected by districts, and not at-large.
Currently, there are 7 members of the Ventura City Council. Each member must be a registered voter in the City and is elected at-large. Each member represents the interests of the City as a whole.
Many district boundaries have been submitted by Venturans for consideration. The more I think about it, I am opposed to election by districts.
If only one person runs in their district they would be automatically elected to the council even if they only received one vote.
If there are several highly qualified folks running for the council living in the same district, only one could be elected.
I think at-large council members has worked just fine for Ventura and has not favored one area over another.
• The Museum of Ventura County has named Elena Brokaw as its permanent Executive Director. She has been the interim executive director since 2016.
The museum has faced large financial issues. It recently receive $125,000 from both Ventura and from the Ventura County. The Museum has also obtained larger financing from corporate and individual gifts. I hope that it can be used to make the museum more interactive and fun for the whole family.
Elena has been my guest on KPPQFM104.1. If you would like to hear her interview, visit www.venturabreeze.com Face OF Ventura and select her show. You might find other shows to be of interest as well (or perhaps not). If you have a recommendation of who I should have on my show please let me know.
• LA County saw an increase in reported hate crimes last year linked to white supremists, with a wave of incidents targeting Jews, African Americans and Muslims. I wonder why that is?
• Every day another well-known male is being fired because of sexual harassment accusations. Some even admit to it and apologize. Minnesota Public Radio said that it was severing all business ties with Garrison Keillor, the creator and retired host of “A Prairie Home Companion,” after allegations of “inappropriate behavior” with an individual who worked with him. Good grief, no one is more all-American then him.
Pretend for a second that there is a TV show called the Apprentice and that one of the male judges made this statement – “You know,” said (you fill in the name), “I’m automatically attracted to beautiful women-I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab ‘em by the xxxxxxxx. You can do anything.”
This judge would be immediately fired, or become President of the United Sates.
• I received an email from a reader (glad that he does read the paper even if to just get mad at me). In part he said, “that’s why I always grab your paper to make a large carbon footprint with my chimney bbq starter.” So now I know that there is yet another reason to read the Breeze besides lining the bottom of your bird and rabbit cages with it. We may need to print more copies.
• Amigos Restaurant in downtown has been shut down by the ABC (Alcoholic Beverage Commission). The notice doesn’t say why but the space is for lease, so Amigos is gone. Will yet another Mexican restaurant open there?
•In a previous issue, I questioned why the national anthem is played at sporting events (does this make me un-American or just curious?).
Here’s a timeline of how the national anthem became a sports tradition in the first place:
1814: Francis Scott Key wrote the Star Spangled Banner.
1889: Secretary of the Navy Benjamin F. Tracy called for the song to be played whenever the American flag was raised.
1916: President Woodrow Wilson signed an executive order declaring the “Star Spangled Banner” the American national anthem.
1918: The song was played spontaneously during the seventh-inning stretch on September 5, 1918, during Game 1 of the World Series between the Boston Red Sox and the Chicago Cubs. After this, other baseball parks began to play the song on holidays and special occasions, and Red Sox owner Harry Frazee made it a regular part of Boston home games.
1931: Congress passed an act officially confirming the “Star Spangled Banner” as the national anthem, and President Hebert Hoover signed it into law.
1941-42: Playing the national anthem before the start of regular season baseball games became the standard. And with the U.S. in World War II now, the National Football League also included the playing of the anthem before games.
1945: NFL commissioner Elmer Layden said, “The playing of the national anthem should be as much a part of every game as the kickoff. We must not drop it simply because the war is over. We should never forget what it stands for.”
2009: NFL players began standing on the field for the national anthem before the start of primetime games. Before this, players would stay in their locker rooms except during the Super Bowl and after 9/11.