As You See It: Dec. 4, 2008

As You See It: Dec. 4, 2008

There are 15 comments on the Santa Cruz Sentinel story from Dec 4, 2008, titled As You See It: Dec. 4, 2008. In it, Santa Cruz Sentinel reports that:

It was great to see Shanna McCord's "Street Smarts" column provide safety tips to cyclists for sharing the road with large trucks and buses.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Santa Cruz Sentinel.

Gay Marriage

United States

#2 Dec 4, 2008
Hey Lawrence Johsens remember when it was illegal for Blacks to marry Whites?

What were they complaining about? I mean it was the law!!!
Bob M

San Mateo, CA

#3 Dec 4, 2008
Gay Marriage wrote:
Hey Lawrence Johsens remember when it was illegal for Blacks to marry Whites?
What were they complaining about? I mean it was the law!!!
Sorry Homo, not a valid or rational argument and you know it be so!
Joel Clueless

Santa Cruz, CA

#4 Dec 4, 2008
Joel your gas tax proposal is ridiculous. Use the money to fund research? What an idiot. The 'green' savior is a pie in the sky, and is going to be the next big bust.
Reality sandwich

Millbrae, CA

#5 Dec 4, 2008
Robert Johnson wants to blame the physician and drug manufacturer because the depressed teenager was "undoubtedly taking anti-depressants, which are known to cause suicide in a certain percentage of those taking them." Cause or delay? My father took pharmaceuticals for years in treating his failing heart. He eventually died of a heart attack, but I'd never blame his doctor or the manufacturer of verapamil and other drugs he took. They just kept him alive a little longer than he would have survived without them.
Mission Street Problem

San Francisco, CA

#6 Dec 4, 2008
...is excessive speed.
Speed limit is 25.
It is not enforced.
There are no consequences for exceeding the speed limit and thereby endangering other motorists, pedestrians, and cyclists because the law is not enforced.
There is no deterrence either for the same reason.
Solutions:
More visible advisory signage.
More visible police presence w/ ticketing, whether convictions can be secured, if contested, or not.
Other motorists will see this activity and there will be "deterrence".
Video Camera/Speed limit signs (like in Capitola at Clares Street) which photograph/document speeders for subsequent ticketing or use in later civil litigation relating to possible subsequent accident injuries/damages involving documented speed violating driver...this would also serve as a "deterrent" factor to slow speeders down because they know their speeding would be documented.
Since no one from the city, Piet Canin w/ Ecology Action, or People Power (et al?) ever include or call me despite my appearance before the city council and Mayor Coonerty at a recent council meeting (requesting that they contact and include me) and my monetary and other donations to them and this "safety effort" on Mission Street where I haved owned the 501 Mission Street Office Building for over 20 years (and DID design at my expense and develop for the City of Santa Cruz @ CALTRANS' entire multi million dollar cost, the entire Mission/King/Union/Chestnut Intersection and infrastructure improvements..ie bike lanes, U-Turns pcoket/bus stops, 3/Wider Lanes, etc for the city and CALTRANS back in 1994...so I do know a little about this intersection and Mission Street and have accomplished a little to effectively address Mission Street traffic and safety problems?...aka a "good track record"?)

http://207.111.238.178/Mission _King_Union_Chestnut_Intersect ion.pdf

(...among other things) before them requesting that they do contact me, I again post my recommendations here in this blog...
and wait to see wha, if anything, might happen.
Don Heichel - Soquel

United States

#7 Dec 4, 2008
CALIFORNIA SPENDING UP 40% SINCE 2004!!!!

The Dimocrats YOU just re-elected want to solve the $40 Billion budget problem by raising your taxes.
Stay ignorant...DO NOT READ THE FOLLOWING FROM THE WSJ AND ABOVE ALL KEEP ELECTING DIMOCRATS TO RAISE SPENDING/TAXES.

When Mr. Schwarzenegger ran for Governor in 2003 amid the last California fiscal crisis, he promised a new ethic of spending restraint, no new taxes and less debt financing.

Six years later none of that has happened. Once California crawled out of that last fiscal emergency, Mr. Schwarzenegger made one more stab at budget reform, got clobbered at the ballot box, and has since given in and let the budget grow to $144.5 billion -- a 40% hike over four years.

The only politicians standing against the media-political consensus for higher taxes are Republicans in the Assembly. Under California law, a two-thirds vote by the legislature is needed to pass a tax increase. Assembly leader Mike Villines has it right when he says that "We just believe that higher taxes will lead to more businesses leaving the state and encourage even more spending."
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1228351341394...
keeth

Fremont, CA

#8 Dec 4, 2008
Bob M wrote:
<quoted text>
Sorry ****, not a valid or rational argument and you know it be so!
We tried separate but equal before and it didn't work. Sorry Bob, your dismissal is not a valid nor rational argument. And you know it to be so as well.
Stickler

United States

#9 Dec 4, 2008
I wonder who Joel would entrust to use this $1/gallon tax he proposes? The government? The oil companies? Scientists? Not! American automakers need to get smart and make cars with 30+ mpg for all models and stop cramming those gas-pig SUVs down own collective throats. How about a minivan with a TDI engine? Toyota actually makes one but it's sold in Japan, the UK and not in the US.
Reality Check

Richmond, CA

#10 Dec 4, 2008
Stickler wrote:
...American automakers need to get smart and make cars with 30+ mpg for all models and stop cramming those gas-pig SUVs down own collective throats. How about a minivan with a TDI engine? Toyota actually makes one but it's sold in Japan, the UK and not in the US.
The auto makers don't 'cram' anything. They all have high mileage options. People choose SUVs. SUVs aren't cheap, but people keep buying them.

Toyota can't sell a TDI in the US (and MINI can't sell their diesel) because the goverment won't let them due to emissions standards.
Stickler

Union City, CA

#11 Dec 4, 2008
Reality Check wrote:
<quoted text>
The auto makers don't 'cram' anything. They all have high mileage options. People choose SUVs. SUVs aren't cheap, but people keep buying them.
Toyota can't sell a TDI in the US (and MINI can't sell their diesel) because the goverment won't let them due to emissions standards.
Is that based on old (80's) diesel emmissions or current? Any idea Diesel technology has come a long way ad the engines are much cleaner burning.
Pat Kittle

Aptos, CA

#12 Dec 4, 2008
Reality Check wrote:
<quoted text>
The auto makers don't 'cram' anything. They all have high mileage options. People choose SUVs. SUVs aren't cheap, but people keep buying them.
Toyota can't sell a TDI in the US (and MINI can't sell their diesel) because the goverment won't let them due to emissions standards.
True, people did choose SUV's.

It's also true Detroit CEO's spent a whole lot more money pushing SUV's than they did pushing efficient vehicles. That's the part they leave out when they demand taxpayers reward them for their short-sighted greed and golden-parachuted stupidity.

Of course, they make inferior vehicles anyway.
Linda ponzini

Watsonville, CA

#14 Dec 5, 2008
The local Nutcracker Ballet is the best deal in town -- world class performances at Santa Cruz ticket prices. The lavish costumes, live orchestra (conducted by our own amazing John Larry Granger), magical sets and breathtaking performances will make you forget all about your troubles for a couple of hours. A bargain and a thrill. December 19, 20 and 21 only at the Civic Auditorium. I'll be at all five performances. I never get bored watching.
James Anderson Merritt

Edmond, OK

#15 Dec 5, 2008
It is silly to have a speed limit as low as 25 on a major California highway, even one that passes through town, as Hwy 1 overlaps Mission. A limit of 35 or 40 would be more reasonable on Mission, given its arterial nature.

I needed to get to an appointment yesterday. I was not driving with excessive speed or in any reckless manner. But I was soon behind a bicycle that insisted on taking up the entire lane -- whether through obliviousness to my presence or simple in-your-face rudeness I couldn't tell. Because I had to follow the slow-moving cyclist, I missed a long light cycle. Of course, the cyclist scooted through after the light changed. I made my appointment, but not with the extra few minutes margin that I could have put to good use.

Sharing the road is a two way street. I'm always on the lookout for bicyclists and motor cyclists and try to drive courteously, respecting them. But when they can help out a motorist by likewise sharing the road, they need to do it.

If 25 remains the speed limit on Mission, I predict a movement to create a freeway bypass that will leave Mission all to itself and the pedestrians and cyclists. Great if you are one of the latter two categories, but perhaps not so good for Mission Street businesses.

Also, if Mission becomes more crowded with non-automotive, non-truck traffic, people will soon realize that "share the road" is about as useful an expression as "just say no." Either separate facilities (bike lanes on a widened Mission, separate bike paths, etc.) must be constructed or alternative vehicles will need to be banned on Mission. That political confrontation will not be pretty, and if it comes down to dollars and cents, the ban will be cheaper.
James Anderson Merritt

Edmond, OK

#16 Dec 5, 2008
Same-sex marriage supporters say the issue is one of equal treatment under the law, and that it is basically the right of any two humans to declared themselves married, live in wedlock, and have the State and society respect that union.

Marriage has never been open to all who sought it. Laws prevent, for example, marriage between siblings or direct ancestors/descendents, even if the couple is composed of a male and a female of the same race. Laws also prevent plural marriage. And of course, there are age limits on marriage in this society (even though babies can be betrothed and/or married in other societies). At one time (and still true in many states), a couple couldn't get married without a blood test to screen for STDs. I don't know whether marriage was prohibited until the test was negative, or if it were the case that the couple merely had to take the test and submit the results. But my point is that governments and societies have established many barriers to the arbitrary marriage of "any two people," and so it is more reasonable to say that (the legal recognition of) marriage is not so much a right as a privilege, extended by government to couples who meet all legally established qualifications. I think this point is emphasized by the fact that you must get a "marriage license." If something is a "right," you can exercise it without need of license. It may be your right to live and entwine your life with anyone(s) you choose. But it is not your right to demand that the government respect your arrangement in any particular way, or force others to do so.

The situation faced by those who wish a same-sex union is similar to that faced by the middle-aged, male, caucasian actor who seeks to fill the role of a young black girl. While the occasional master thespian will come along who could pull it off -- and who would lose out in the chance to put a feather in his cap, not to mention get a paycheck, if rejected for the part -- in general we don't see the casting directors as practicing sexual, racial, or age-related discrimination for rejecting a non-young, non-black, non-girl. If a part were written simply as "shop clerk," on the other hand, then our actor would have a better case for claiming discrimination if, for instance, he were passed up in favor of a young black girl by a young, black director, and then noticed that most of the cast were young and black in a play that ostensibly told a tale of life in suburban Boise, Idaho.

The working definition (and often, the legal definition) of marriage has always been reducible to one man, one woman, regardless of any other variations that have gone in and out of style or legitimacy over the millennia. That is what has tended to "stick," becoming established in society after society, through social custom and law, around the globe.

Marriage isn't a case of open casting for the role of shopkeeper. The role is more specifically understood as a man-woman team. Attempts to expand that definition in the past (e.g., via polygamy, whether in Mormon Utah or California communes of the 60s and 70s, or in the childhood wedding rites of immigrant populations who settled in this country), have not succeeded. The present push to legalize gay marriage is yet another such attempt to redefine the word. Maybe it will succeed or maybe it will fail. But unless and until the word itself is redefined, by custom or by law, claims that gays do not get equal rights or equal treatment under the law simply don't hold water, and this is especially so, given the rights, privileges, and responsibilities accorded to domestic partners under California law. The legal arguments that the CA Supreme Court used last May to allow for gay marriage were examples of seriously flawed reasoning, however kind the intention, and I would have expected the decision to be overturned eventually, had the electorate not mooted the issue by passing Proposition 8.
keeth

Fremont, CA

#17 Dec 6, 2008
James Anderson Merritt wrote:
Same-sex marriage supporters say the issue...
Dig deeper into Western History and you will find that marriage has not always been the purview of the Church (that which has caused male-female unions to "stick" around the globe), nor has it always been strictly for male-female unions. That we happen to be in a time and country where "protection" (laughable) of male-female unions has reached hysterical levels does not make this time, this country, or our majority's beliefs any more valid than other points in time.
While I understand the point you are trying to make, I still must reject it. I find it odd that people would so easily forget (intentionally or not) the words of the "Equal Protection Clause" of our secular government, but if history is any guide, I shouldn't be surprised at all in this country. In addition, your analogy of the middle-aged white actor trying to play the part of a young black girl is insulting.

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