Vol. 13, No. 11 – Feb 26 – Mar 10, 2020 – Opinion/Editorial

∙Watching the first of the Las Vegas Democratic Townhall presentations made me very proud to be an American. A Jew, a gay person and a woman were being interviewed as potential presidential candidates. This is what will make America great again, and me proud again.

∙The Church of Scientology has moved into their new facility located on Alessandro (right off the 101 freeway between Seaward and San Jon). Some folks have been expressing words like “anger” and “being scared” that they are located there. I think that is nonsense.

Revelations of the sexual abuse of children by priests continue to rock the Catholic Church in the United States more than 15 years after clerical abuse and its cover-up became a national scandal. The recent Boy Scouts of America’s bankruptcy filing puts it into similar company as almost two dozen US Catholic dioceses and USA Gymnastics.

Would neighbors be upset if the Boy Scouts or a Catholic Church opened there? I don’t think so.

People who don’t like Scientology say that they are science-fiction based. Isn’t the following from the bible science fiction?

Jonah was swallowed by a fish and yet remained alive in its belly for three days. A 640-year old man built a 400 ft. long 3-story boat and then had all animal species get onboard – lions standing next to animals that they typically eat for.

People who convert to Scientology aren’t hypnotized or have guns held to their heads. They study it and decide this is what they want to follow. Few people ever actually do that. Most are born into a religion and that determines their religious beliefs. They don’t study all available religions and decide which to follow (except in some rare occasions).

Of course, there are some things about Scientology that many people would disagree with, but these things exist in all religions so just relax and let them be. They are not hurting you or me.

Doesn’t your religion preach tolerance? Religious tolerance assumes that a person does not discriminate against another person’s religious beliefs, even if they think that the person’s beliefs are wrong.

I was invited to the grand opening of the new church and was very impressed with the speakers. Five who spoke about thangs such as saving the environment, a drug free world and peace. Nothing about the super-natural. If a person just listened would not even know that it was the dedication of a church. The interior of the building was just as impressive (no, I’m not becoming a Scientology).

∙Sorry to see the passing of one of the greatest jazz fans there ever was, Ventura local, Ken Winter (Old Man Jazz).  I considered him a friend, even though I only saw him at jazz events. Our love of jazz was enough to consider him to be a friend.

∙After months of uncertainty, the Oxnard City Council has approved a new contract which means the Oxnard Performing Arts and Convention Center is open for business.

Once scheduled to close due to budget cuts, the Center will now be operated by Sterling Venue Ventures. Sterling owns or operates eight concert venues in Southern California, including The Canyon in Agoura Hills and Libbey Bowl in Ojai. Under the agreement, the city will not subsidize the center.

Happy to say the new operator plans to book 52 events in the first year. Always fun to go there and enjoy the events.

∙ (CNN) Among greenhouse gases, carbon dioxide is the most significant contributor to global warming and therefore, public enemy No. 1 when it comes to stopping the climate crisis. Methane is a close second. Scientists say that atmospheric methane is now responsible for about 25% of the human-caused warming. A new study finds that methane emissions from fossil fuels are between 25% and 40% larger than past research had estimated, revealing that oil and gas production is contributing far more to warming the planet than previously thought.

The study, published in the scientific journal Nature, sheds new light on just how much fossil fuel production and use is changing the atmosphere and is warming the planet. Of course, we all know it is a hoax, right?

∙Maybe folks who want to sneak into the U.S. are smarter than us. Smugglers in Juárez, Mexico have been using ladders made from rebar to scale President Donald Trump’s border wall and enter the U.S. according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Because their color scheme matches the wall, the ladders are difficult to detect. Border patrol agents have found a number of them in the El Paso,Texas portion of the border. Perhaps the walls could be painted pink so that the rebar stands out. $50 worth of rebar to scale multimillion-dollar walls.

And U.S. authorities discovered the longest smuggling tunnel ever found along the southwest border. The tunnel originates in Tijuana and extends a total of 4,309 feet – more than three-quarters of a mile. The next longest tunnel in the U.S., discovered in San Diego in 2014, was 2,966 feet long.

∙Very unfortunate that another Proposition 13 is going to be on the ballot, and it has nothing to do with the original Prop. 13 from 1978. This one is all about bond money for schools. Couldn’t they have named it something else?

∙NASA is planning a Mars landing, and research, that will cost billions of dollars. At its closest, Mars is 35 million miles away from Earth and would take nine months (time to have a baby) to get there, and then we can’t even breath the air there. Hope when we finally settle, there will be apartments to rent and not just condos. Would children born there automatically be Mar’s citizens?

∙The public is invited to provide input for the oil and gas industry at a series of workshops around the state, including one in Oxnard, as the Department of Conservation develops new health and safety regulations.  In November, California announced several oil and gas initiatives to safeguard public health and the environment, advance California’s goal to become carbon-neutral by 2045 and manage the decline of oil production and consumption in the state. Among those initiatives are new regulations to strengthen protections for public health and safety. The first step in this process is pre-rulemaking workshops to receive input from interested parties including residents, industry groups, environmental and public health advocates, and public health authorities.

The meeting will be held on March 18, from 6-8 p.m. in the Pacifica High School Cafeteria, 600 East Gonzales Road, Oxnard.

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