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Vol. 8, No. 24 – September 2 – September 15, 2015 – Opinion/Editorial

SheldonNew~ In this issue, we have Unsung Hero portrait number 3 in our current series. I want to thank Sam, the owner of the Rhumb Line restaurant, for being such a gracious host at the luncheon and our waitress Heather for taking such good care of us. Wonderful food and the best view in Ventura watching the boats go by day or night.

~ Five portraits from The Face of Ventura series by Johanna Spinks, are currently on display at the Museum of Ventura County’s current exhibit of portraits. See our Ventura Art Scene section for more details.

~ The Saturday night concert series at Ventura’s coolest summer outdoor night club, the historic Olivas Adobe, concludes on September 5 with Lisa Haley & the Zydekats. It’s too late to get tickets for this sold out event but be sure to attend a concert next year to hear great bands, enjoy a big dance floor, BYO dining, and gourmet food and coffee trucks along with full beverage service. The City’s Music Under The Stars concerts are growing in popularity. It’s a great, intimate, venue and a fun way to spend 8 Saturday nights each Summer.
Talking about concert series, it seems that the proposed concert series planned above City Hall may not be happening soon. I haven’t been able to get a good answer from anyone at the City regarding this, but there doesn’t appear to be positive movement.

~ It is absurd these days that 55-year old people are considered to be seniors in many programs. That was fine when the average life age was 65. It seems that today to be considered a senior the age should be at least 65. Anyone who is 55 and considers themselves to be a senior better get out and get some physical and mental exercise. What would I be considered to be, a dinosaur?

~ Recently, San Buenaventura was selected by a magazine as the best city in America to live and now “Ventura County” has been selected as the absolute most desirable place to live in America. This selection was made by the Washington Post looking at over 3,000 counties.Friends of the Library and TAG won 1st place in the County Fair Parade for Novelty Entry. And the Bookworm won a trophy.
FriendsofLibFriends of the Library and TAG won 1st place in the County Fair Parade for Novelty Entry. And the Bookworm won a trophy.

Furthermore, in their rankings of the best counties in the continental US all of the top 10 ranked counties are in California.Humboldt was second and Santa Barbara third.
The index that they used to make their selections combines “six measures of climate, topography, and water area that reflect environmental qualities most people prefer.” Those qualities, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, include mild, sunny winters, temperate summers, low humidity, topographic variation, and access to a body of water (not one word about reading the Ventura Breeze).

~ I have always felt that “vaping” was just another excuse to smoke. Now there is bad and good news about vaping. Although smoking by teens has been dropping, the bad news is that teens using e-cigarettes are far more likely to start smoking traditional cigarettes than their peers. The good news is when they realize how stupid it is to smoke they can go to vaping as a way to stop smoking.
I’m sure that I will hear from some readers (I hope), who say that vaping is much less hazardous than tobacco, but it is too early to make such a claim until much more research is done. All we know is that companies similar to Vapeboss are heavily investing in research to ensure their products are ‘healthier’ than traditional tobacco cigarettes. So, maybe don’t throwaway your vape pen stand just yet.

~ In a June, 2014 issue of the Breeze, an article stated that the “Harbor Community Church has filed a lawsuit against the City of Ventura signaling the start of the next round in the fight over the church’s controversial homeless program. The program, which provides meals, showers and religious worship to a primarily homeless population has been accused of being the source of a significant uprising in criminal activity in a once quiet residential neighborhood, was reopened again by the church after the
lawsuit was filed.”
The article said, “Last month, the City’s Planning Commission denied the church a conditional-use permit citing the program, called Operation Embrace, was not appropriate for its location next to an elementary school, park and day care facility.”
At the time, temporary City Attorney Juli Scott reported Harbor Church pastor Sam Gallucci sent her an email stating he was going to consult with church elders to decide whether the church would sue. The following day, the church filed a lawsuit and restarted its services.
Scott said the City was disappointed with the lawsuit and had hoped the church would be willing to work with the City to find a collaborative approach to providing their services in a way that would be less impactful on the neighborhood. She pointed to other organizations that provide services for the homeless who had worked with the City including the Salvation Army, Lutheran Social Services, Society of St. Vincent de Paul, and Project Understanding.
The suit argued the church’s First Amendment freedom of religion rights have been violated and also cites the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act.
After all attempts at mediation have failed, this on-going disagreement continues. Harbor Community Church is seeking an injunction so it may reopen Operation Embrace until a final decision is reached by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals who will hear their case.
Neighbors have complained that the program drew a homeless population that was not compatible with the residential neighborhood, especially with a school and park located very near the church.
I have to agree with the neighbors and the city. I think that the allowed uses of structures should be based on proper zoning and the nature of the surrounding neighborhoods.
A church could claim that because of their “freedom of religion rights” they can provide any services that they think this right gives them. There are some wonderful programs that serve the homeless in Ventura, but they are located in appropriate locations.

Logic will get you from A to Z, imagination will get you everywhere.
~ Albert Einstein

Local youth to compete in international tournament

youth billiardsMom is right proud of son Chris Robinson-Reinhold
Photo by Bernie Goldstein

by Sheli Ellsworth

If playing billiards well is a sign of an ill-spent youth, 17-year-old Venturean Chris Robinson-Reinhold’s teen life is doomed, but don’t tell him—not before he goes to China to compete in the World Pool-Billiard Association’s Junior 9-Ball Championship. In November, Robinson-Reinhold will travel with six American junior pool players along with his own chaperone to Shanghai to go up against 16-32 other young international players.

Robinson-Reinhold’s rise in competitive billiards has been steep, fast and not without notice. He started playing three years ago when his uncle, Kevin Farrell, taught him the basics. “I don’t have a pool table at home, but I live really close to Stiix Billiards,” says Robinson-Reinhold. Jerry Matchin, owner of Stiix and a lifetime pool player, says, “Chris is our special player. A good son, student, good citizen who happens to be an exceptional billiard player at his young age. His winning the Junior Nationals is quite an accomplishment for him and we at Stiix Billiards could not be prouder of him.”

Robinson-Reinhold says he spends several hours a day at Stiix honing his skill. “It depends on how much homework I have, though.”

After finishing high in a few Mezz West state tour events, and winning a Hard Times LA monthly event, Robinson-Reinhold won this year’s Billiard Education Foundation Junior National Championship at South Point Casino in Las Vegas. The August 2015 win made him eligible for the November international tournament. However, Robinson-Reinhold’s has not been a success only journey. “I went to Louisville, Kentucky last year for the national championship and I didn’t do well. But it turned out to be a great learning experience . . . I needed it  . . . I learned about defeat.”

The young champion’s learning will not stop in Kentucky. He is hoping to earn a spot at Lindenwood University at St. Charles, Missouri in the near future. “I’ll graduate by the end of the fall semester and Lindenwood has the only prestigious billiard program in the United States.” He’s not sure on what he would like to major in, but is interested in both electrical engineering and architecture.

Lindenwood’s billiard coach, Mark Wilson, was a professional pool player, instructor, TV commentator and author of Play Great Pool (based on biomechanical principles) when the university recruited him to start the only scholarship-based pool program in the country which was officially launched in 2012. “I decided if I was going to do this it had to be the platinum standard of its kind. Unfortunately, even the larger schools that have billiards teams don’t have the funding to make it a premier program,” says Wilson. Wilson, who observed the US Navy Seals in Coronado, based his training techniques on the core values and discipline he admired about Navy seal training. “We have about 32-35 students, including 7 females in our billiard program. We were an all-female school until 1997 so we definitely encourage girls to play.“ About 4-5 of Wilson’s students plans to play professionally. Wilson says he has his eye on Robinson-Reinhold.

Stiix Billiards is planning a fundraiser to help with Robinson-Reinhold’s expenses to China.

The girls constantly cheered, consoled and encouraged each other

youth Ventura StealersTop row Coach Nick Garcia, Coach Mike More, Katelyn Kelley, Sierra Garcia, Jessica Mendoza, Abigail Sourwine, Kalyssa Muniz, Kelly More, Coach Jere Dietz.
bottom row Jamie Dietz, Jaymes Howard, Rylee Mcdaniel, Courtney Terrazas, Katherine Tafoya, Coach Patrick Tafoya. Not show Jocelyn Hernandez.

Ventura Stealers traveled to Seattle Washington July 15-18 for the NSA Western World Series and played in the 14 Division, games were played in the cities of Marysville and Monroe Washington.

In the  14 Division there were a total of 12 teams, during the days of the double elimination tournament the Ventura Stealers played a total of 9 games scoring a total of 86 runs and giving up 49, in pool play their record was 1-1 and in bracket play their record was 6-1 finishing with a combined record of 7-2.

The Ventura Stealers playing in their fourth game of the day, defeated the Washington Snohomish County Red  6-4 in the Championship Game completing a fantastic tournament in first place and becoming the 2015 NSA Western World Series Champions.

Teams that participated in the tournament were from Washington, Oregon, Northern and Southern California.

During the final day of the tournament the Ventura Stealers were one game away from being eliminated, during each game together as a team the girls played through bumps, bruises, errors, tears, sad times and happy times. The girls constantly cheered, consoled one another, encouraged each other, and every girl participated and contributed to each win.

 

Congratulations to Ventura Water customers!

Congratulations to our customers!
Shana Epstein,
Ventura Water General Manager

Ventura Water congratulates all our customers; we are extremely grateful. New figures show that customer water use was down 39 percent last month (July) compared to July 2013, allowing Ventura Water for the first time to reach our 20 percent annual water reduction goal for the year so far! The exact year-to-date reduction in water use by customers as of the end of July was 20.79 percent.

As the City and the State experience one of the most severe droughts on record, the customers of Ventura have proven that they have the ingenuity and commitment to meet the challenges of conserving water. We have all come a long way since September of 2014, when Ventura declared a Stage 3 Water Shortage Emergency requiring customers to reduce water use by 20 percent.

During the months of May, June and July this year, Ventura Water customers have reduced their water use significantly, establishing what we hope is a continuing trend. May 2015 saw a 28 percent water use decrease compared to May 2013, June saw a 41 percent decrease from June 2013, and July’s decrease was 39 percent compared to July 2013. It is important to note that we conserve the most during the warmer months! We need to continue our efforts through the fall and into the winter! We aren’t in the clear yet!

Ventura Water has instituted several mandatory water conservation measures for our customers. They include: sprinkler irrigation systems may run only two days per week between the hours of 6 p.m. to 9 a.m.; handheld hoses used to wash cars must have a shutoff nozzle; fountains must use recycled water; and hosing down hard surfaces like driveways or sidewalks is not allowed.

Ventura Water offers free water conservation aids and on-site residential water surveys to help our customers save water. Please contact Customer Care at myvtawater@cityofventura.net or call 667-6500 to schedule a water survey.

 

Vol. 8, No. 24 – September 2 – September 15, 2015 – Mailbox

Dear Sheldon,

Thanks for staying with the philosophical discussion that readers are interested in thinking about…that’s the start.  But I would like to suggest that the world’s biggest problem (the elephant in the room) is “overpopulation”… too many people on the planet.   Or is our earth too small for the needs or wants of the human species?

Suzanna Ballmer


 

Response to Letter by Vaughn

I appreciate Robert Vaughn’s response to my letter citing statistics for atheists in prison and asking who is more moral an atheist who does good because he perceives it right or someone who believes in God and does right to avoid going to hell.  The statistics cited are misleading since are based on tabulations of categories such as “atheist” by itself but exclude categories such as “refuses to state”, “other”, etc. A more meaningful comparison would be based on defining those whose actions are directly influenced by their beliefs.   I certainly believe an atheist can be as good a person as a believer in God. The point that I was making was that a person who believes in God has independent documentation outside himself which defines what is right and wrong. An atheist does not have an external guide to right and wrong. When Mr. Vaughn cites he is doing “good”, I would ask where does he go to define what is good besides the penal code. My original letter was written in rebuttal to the suggestion that Supreme Court Justices be atheists because the atheist lacks an external source of guidance of right and wrong(morality)  independent of himself.

John Ferritto


Breeze

Hopefully, my letter to the editor (in previous Breeze)ref “beach open spaces” will stir some interest….that and my weekly email harassment of the City and VPD related to the state of affairs on the beachfront (especially the promenade).  My photos paint a pretty ugly picture of what tourists see when they come of our fair city.  Actually the Harbor, Keys and Pierpont are greatly improved but the promenade not only has vagrants but some pretty sketchy lowlife gangsters.  I am still waiting for the City and Kevin Clerici to get serious about the promenade.  I have talked to the Manager and Events Coordinator at the Crown Plaza, they have nothing good to say about the City’s handling of the promenade.  They and their customers probably suffer the most from this lack of attention.

George Robertson-Pierpont


Hello,

I am a frequent letter writer to newspapers, but have had only 6 published in the Ventura Star.  It seems as if they won’t print anything criticizing the City or Government.

On or about July 2010, the Ventura County Medical Center was nominated as the Trauma Center for the West County.  St. John’s Hospital was the other applicant.  Notwithstanding the need for a Trauma Center, I can see no references regarding the environmental impact of ambulance noise. I have not been able to obtain the Minutes of any City or County Meetings about this decision. I also saw no calls for Public Comment.

The noise generated by the sirens is unbearable to many residents who live on telegraph Road, and nearby for 2 to 3 blocks from these streets. I am routinely woken up after 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. by the noise. I have counted houses close to these streets, and I estimate that over 100 homes are affected. This means at least 300 citizens. The route via Seaward Avenue is much shorter and exposes fewer homes to the noise. Furthermore the value of my home is impacted.

I have not seen or heard of any discussions relating to this. The choice of St. John’s Hospital would have been by far the best choice.

It would be extremely difficult to serve a class action suit against the County, with enormous legal fees. However, I will attempt to deliver a complaint to the County, hopefully signed by over 100 citizens. The County has a history of ignoring home owners. For example building a 6 story building on the campus.

Sincerely,
Jeff Smith

Jeff: Now you have had one published in the Ventura Breeze. Five more to go.


Sir

A ship of fools America is not, but when money is allowed to tether a skipper’s hands from talking with an independent wisdom the gales of corruption and not the set of sails will take the vessel to more Iraq’s. There may be time yet to put our ship of state in order and on the course of its designed purpose. When our Congress hasn’t the character and integrity to purge the crippling political money buying evil, however, be prepared to kiss America’s experiment in democracy goodbye.

Sincerely,
John A. Whelan

Vol. 8, No. 24 – September 2 – September 15, 2015 – Forever Homes Wanted

scamp to adopt CARLHi: I’m Oreo a 7 1/2 year old Chihuahua mix looking for a new home because my family just had too many dogs. They received a notice that most of us had to go, and so I came to C.A.R.L. with a bunch of my puppies. I enjoy going for walks. I get along with many other dogs, but I can be choosy sometimes. So let’s have a meet and greet first! I’m cautious and shy with new people. I need to go to a home with no small children because I’ll defend myself if I feel like I’m being messed with too much, but if you take the time to let me get to know you, I turn into a little teddy bear! I’ll jump in your lap, I’ll beg to be picked up, and I’m just an all-around love bug!


scamp to adopt VCASLittle Lina would like everyone to know that you can visit adoptable bunnies at one of our local pet stores. The employees at Petco Moorpark have been trained to provide daily care to spayed and neutered shelter rabbits who live at the store and are available for adoption. As always, the nominal adoption fee even includes a free vet visit. Of course, Ventura County Animals Services has plenty of rabbits you can meet at our Camarillo Campus, including Miss Lina! To visit Lina and learn more about our outreach efforts,  visit VCAS at 600 Aviation Drive in Camarillo and ask for ID number A610411. For details about offsite rabbit adoptions, bunny nail trims, and compatibility dates, please visit www.facebook.com/VCASBunnyBrigade.

A Tender Touch Senior Placement – Importance of oral health in the aging population

By Connie De La Rosa

Taking care of ourselves in all aspects, especially as we age, whether it is in exercise, being active in the community to maintain social interaction, or regular doctor visits, is more vital. Today, there are many educational classes and outreach programs that assist in making better choices for a much more healthy lifestyle. It’ emphasizes the importance of keeping your oral health in a good place. While nowadays there are cosmetic dentistry options like porcelain crowns (look at https://garycashdds.com/cosmetic-dentistry/porcelain-crowns/ for more info on this) if your oral health decreases and causes staining or other issues but this doesn’t mean we should rely on it to keep our smile.

“As the percentage of older adults continues to increase, we can observe that they are also keeping their teeth much longer than previous decades” states Dental Hygienist Nena S. Casillas. Keeping teeth longer also means an increase in periodontal disease, worn and deteriorated dental restorations, and cavities. This would mean an increase in the chance you will need to visit an emergency dentist for treatment for such problems. CareDash explains how to find an emergency dentist in this article, should you need one. Maintaining a regular oral care routine with a dentist or dental hygienist can help prevent some of the expected oral health problems. It also means that you’ll only need to make 2 visits a year to Dentist Worcester as opposed to 4 if your oral health is in a bad state.

Medical studies and research have shown that bacteria in the mouth have been linked to heart and lung diseases, diabetes, pneumonia, and other health problems. An RDHAP (Registered Dental Hygienist in Alternative Practice/Mobile Dental Hygienist-accepts Medi-Cal and most insurances) can help start a dental hygiene program for a Skilled Nursing Facility, Intermediate Care Facility, and private homes. RDHAP services can help prevent health problems that are caused by dental plaque and calculus. Therefore, the overall health of a person may be enhanced with improved oral health. Again, the importance of regular checkups with your Dentist Avon Lake cannot be overstressed.

For more information , please call 200-7756.

Lost Cat

scamp lost catHi: I’m a lost male Persian Short Hair (Exotic) : 7 years old : height 11-12″ : 17-18 lbs. : Red and white striped collar with red bell and yellow home again tag (microchipped) : Last seen on Bluebonnet Ave, near Saticoy and Telephone : Color Black with Golden Eyes : My name is Rambo, I have a fat tail, chubby body, flat face, dense fur, look like a teddy bear, and am friendly

My friend Holly Nuckols sure misses me and I miss her so hopefully you will find me and call her.

Phone 340-0601, E-mail holly@buzzins.net

When you’ve lost or found a cat in Ventura County go to LostCatVentura.com