The Beat Goes On And On
You know, some things never change. Over at the CM Press, the racist author continues with his drumbeat about Costa Mesa's under performing schools, which he blames entirely on the presence of children of illegal immigrants. He laments the relatively poor performance of some Costa Mesa schools when compared to schools in Newport Beach, again blaming the disparity on those children of illegal aliens. He, of course, ignores the socio-economic differences between the two cities. If you disregard the illegal immigrants in Costa Mesa - and no one really knows how many people that represents - Newport Beach is still far ahead of Costa Mesa in every economic measurement. The CM Press author says, "..you want the best education for your kids and you want them to have a leg up on life." That's undoubtedly true. However, many - probably most - of the kids living in Newport Beach don't just have a leg up, they start several rungs up on the ladder before ever throwing that leg up. That's just the way it is. Expunging the Latinos from Costa Mesa - the CM Presses ultimate objective, if you believe his rants on the internet sites for which he writes - doesn't resolve that disparity.
No rational person will deny that injecting students with limited English skills into a school system creates problems. It's one thing to insert new limited English students at the Kindergarten, First or Second grades - programs are available to manage those students and get them up to speed quickly. However, when students with those limitations are inserted at higher grades it will take Herculean efforts to keep them from failing. It takes hard work and dedication on the part of the administrators, teachers, students and their parents for them to succeed. Rather than expend that effort, the CM Press would rather just flush them out of the city.
Now, this would be bad enough if he was the only person in this city with such intolerant views, but he's not. Today, in our city, we have a majority on the City Council who are in lockstep with his views. As a result, anytime any issue that might, in the slightest way, involve students of Latino origins comes up, the New Majority on the council hammers it. And, since the minority on the council, Katrina Foley and Linda Dixon, seem willing to help craft solutions to the problems, the New Majority freezes them out - discarding almost every positive, progressive effort they propose. The most recent of these was the Youth in Government proposal that was trash-canned in a fit of pique by the New Majority instead of taking the time to flesh out their concerns and move forward with a program that was already in progress. Letters to the editor and online comments in the Daily Pilot reflected the disappointment of the children involved, and that of many concerned citizens, as well.
Steve Smith, in his Daily Pilot column, recently took the New Majority to task for that particular move and alluded to an insensitivity to children's issues on their part. Certainly, that cannot possibly apply to Councilwoman Wendy Leece who, in addition to being a mother and grandmother, spent several tumultuous years on the school board. Smith's assessment about Bever and Mansoor, though, may be more accurate. Childless, as far as we know, these two men continue to take actions that appear to be the result of insensitivity, ignorance or just plain stubbornness - maybe all three.
The New Majority has placed the welfare of the children of Costa Mesa squarely in the cross hairs of their misguided attempts to expunge Latinos from our city. Following the lead of the CM Press, they've made the children pawns in their petty political games. Shame on them.
Further in that same posting the CM Press author goes on to lament the fact that "We're not only not attracting upwardly mobile people, we're seeing many of those who already live here flee to safer communities with better schools and a higher quality of life". He then says, "And, it is people who make a difference. A city is its people." He's 100% correct in those observations.
I know a few of those young, upwardly mobile families who decided to leave Costa Mesa recently for what they perceived as a better place to live. They left not because of a problem with the schools - they were very happy with the educational opportunities available to their children here. They left because of the atmosphere in this city - an atmosphere of intolerance that not only festers on the Westside, but is encouraged by the actions of some of our elected leaders. They simply didn't want to raise their families in a city where such Neanderthal values thrive. They looked ahead and saw no light at the end of this dark, dark tunnel - so they moved on. How can you blame them? Do you really enjoy living in a city where such views control the agenda? This is a real tragedy for our community.