Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Minutemen and Independence Day


"MINUTEMEN" IN NAME ONLY
As we approach the Independence Day holiday I find it truly ironic that an organization called "The Minuteman Project" continues to generated so much negative press.

COSTA MESA KNOWS HIM WELL

We in Costa Mesa have more than a passing awareness of that organization. A couple years ago their founder, Jim Gilchrist, brought his band of rabble to town to lobby before our city council in support of then-mayor Allan Mansoor's plan to cross-designate every Costa Mesa police officer as an immigration screener.

GILCHRIST WAS FLASH POINT
You will r
ecall that Gilchrist was the flash point that created the firestorm at a council meeting where activist Benito Acosta was dragged from the speaker's podium, horse-collared and wrestled from the auditorium and arrested. Acosta had protested being forbidden from having his friends stand to show support, and for being cut off short of his alloted 3 minutes speaking time. Gilchrist had earlier asked his five dozen supporters to stand.

GILCHRIST HOOLIGANS DEMONSTRATE
Subsequently, Gilchrist and his hooligans began picketing the Westside restaurant of activist and co
uncil candidate Mirna Burciaga, taunting patrons and blocking patrons from entering.


HYPOCRITE PATRIOT

And, who could forget Gilchrist's pathetic performa
nce before the City Council two years ago when, hypocrite "patriot" that he is, he forgot the words to the Pledge of Allegiance to our flag? As I said at the time, even those children of immigrants on our city's Westside can recite The Pledge without botching it. Gilchrist has become a pathetic caricature - a cartoon version of himself.

MINUTEMA
N MANSOOR
Oh, yes, and don't forget that Gilchrist anointed Mansoor as an honorary Minuteman amid mu
ch hoopla - a designation Mansoor readily acknowledged.

O.C. REGISTER CHRONI
CLES HIS FALL
Gilchrist has lost control of the organization he founded under a cloud of
accusations of misuse of funds and mismanagement. The Orange County Register recently published an excellent account of Gilchrist's "fall from grace" in an article by Amy Taxin. You can read it HERE. The sidebar that chronicles the "Minuteman Project" time line is particularly interesting.

WHAT INDEPENDENCE DAY IS ALL ABOUT

As you approach our Independence Day holiday on Friday, a day on which we celebrate the establishment of this great country, please try to remember what the d
ay stands for. It's not just a day for picnics, parties and fireworks. It's a day when we commemorate the grand idea that resulted in the founding of this country - a country of immigrants. This country has prospered and endured for more than 230 years by recognizing the value of immigrants and welcoming them with open arms.

NAME USURPERS AND FEAR MONGERS
Gilchrist and his group - which has more than 20 splinter organizations according to Taxin's report - usurped the patriotic name of the real Minutemen in an attempt to seduce you into believing they are patriots. They are not. They are fear-mongers who p
rey on the most vulnerable among us.

REMEMBER THE REASON
On Friday, as you broil your hamburgers and hot dogs, unfurl your red, white and blue bunting and shoot off your safe and sane fireworks, please remember what this country is really all about. Remember what the real Minutemen fought for more than
two hundred years ago. Remember the inscription at the base of the Statue of Liberty - the poem written in 1883 by Emma Lazarus, which says, in part...

"Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to
me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"


Remember the immigrants who founded this country and those subsequent immigrants who have made it the bright beacon for the rest of the world. Remember...

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LIAR, LIAR....


FROTHING IN MESA NORTH
Today a notorious blogger who lives in the north part of our town produced another of his rants in which he attempts to persuade his readers that all the brown faces in our town are evil, gang-bangers.

FLAT-OUT LIE!
In the middle of his rant he produces a flat out lie - not unusual for him, since fabrication and pontification is his stock in trade. He states that the CMPD reported recently that our city does not have a White Gang problem. That's a lie!

WHITE GANGS INSIDIOUS
The CMPD had consistently reported that we do, in fact, have a White Gang problem, and it far surpasses in severity the Latino gangs. The White Gangs in Costa Mesa are linked to similar prison gangs and prey on the populace with drug and identity theft schemes. The gangs with which they are associated are vicious, and have been known to kill their own founders because they spoke with the press.

WHY DOES HE DENY?
A couple years ago, as part of a county-wide sweep, twenty White Gang members were apprehended in seventeen locations in our city. No White Gang problem? Ha! Liar! Doesn't it make you curious why this guy defends the White Gangs? I wonder why that is?

DON'T TRUST HIM
This is how it's going to be through the elections - he'll lie every chance he gets. Don't believe a word he says.

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Sunday, June 29, 2008

A GREAT NEIGHBORHOOD!

I love my neighborhood! And, boy, do I love this time of the year - when "graduation season" rolls around.

A GREAT FAMILY NEIGHBORHOOD
I've mentioned my neighborhood before - it's a great place to raise a family. When my sweet wife and I moved into our house on the Eastside almost 35 years ago there were only six children in our block - and we were the "young couple" in the neighborhood. Those happy youngsters are now grown and gone and two thirds of them are raising their own little ones. But, their parents remain firmly planted in our neighborhood, so we get a chance to see this new generation flourishing as they return to visit.

FROM KID TO GEEZER
Today there are more than 30 kids in our neighborhood, depending on how you choose to count those returning from college and the one we have "in the oven", so to speak. Today my wife and I are no longer the "young couple" and I've become the embodiment of "Mr. Wilson" from Dennis the Menace fame.

STARS RETURN
Four years ago we counted among our neighborhood graduates two student body presidents - one from Newport Harbor and one from Mater Dei. Those bright young people returned home last week, college diplomas firmly grasped in their hands, ready to change the world.

RECORD CROP
This year we had six, count-em, six young people graduate from Newport Harbor High School - a new record for our little enclave. Among them are athletes, actors and scholars - and all of them are great kids. They are smart, hard-working, attractive and respectful. I remember most of them being pushed around our neighborhood in their strollers many years ago. I've helped a few of them shed their training wheels and taught them the most important thing about riding a two-wheeler - how to stop.

WATCHING THEM GROW
I've watched the boys learn how to drive - sometimes too fast - and the girls learn how to flirt - also sometimes too fast. Over the years I've seen more trees in our neighborhood than I can accurately remember covered with enough toilet paper to serve the sanitation needs of a small country for a year. That's a display of affection I still don't fully understand.

EAGLES FLY!
We beamed with pride as our neighborhood hatched two more Eagle Scouts this year - that's three in the past few years. These young men have demonstrated that they have not only acquired a good education, but they're solidly-grounded in the life lessons that will help them excel in the future.

TRANSITIONS
As original residents pass on - we had two lovely older neighbors leave us within the last year - a new crop of urchins are just about ready to join this world to replace them.

AWESOME SPIRIT
Later this week our neighborhood will celebrate it's second annual Independence Day block party, the food for which will be underwritten again by an extraordinarily generous member of the neighborhood who is about to become a father for the first time. It will be a day of fun, food, frivolity and fireworks. If last year is any indication, we will have a chance to meet and greet our returning college students, fresh from places like Berkeley, Chico, South Bend, West Virginia, Maryland, Idaho, Santa Barbara, Boston, Spokane and San Diego. We'll see those nervous kids who left home for college returning as confident, accomplished young men and women, beginning to flower. We know these young folks will soon take their turn at making our community and world a better place - we're going to be in good hands.

Did I mention that I love my neighborhood?

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