Plus Letters to Good Times
Oh … Some Hope
Put it in Park
Love is all around. But how much of it are you getting? Or giving, for that matter. I came across some old notes of mine that documented some interesting readings I found over the years. Love—loving—actually promotes good health. More on that next week, but for now, it’s great to see some love emerging in the form of the many benefits for Haiti taking place around the county. Motiv in Downtown Santa Cruz had one last week, and The Red has plans to host one. On Friday, Feb. 12, First Congregational Church in Santa Cruz welcomes Franklin Marshall for an event. Now that one news cycle has rolled out, much has been reported on Haiti, but it shouldn’t stop there. More attention can be drawn to the events unfolding there as Haiti rebuilds. One organization I found intriguing, which News Editor Elizabeth Limbach wrote about in our “Fresh Dirt” blog, is Save the Children. It’s an entity on a mission to generate lasting change in the lives of children in need around the globe. Presently, Save the Children is offering assistance in Port au Prince— food, water, shelter and more. Consider making a donation to Save the Children at savethechildren.org. Learn more about other ways to contribute to this cause by logging onto our website. Just click on the ‘Fresh Dirt” blogs and you’ll find updates on Haiti and what locals can do to assist.
Some news: The AMGEN Tour of California has announced its route for the big excursion, which unfolds May 16-23. It all begins in Nevada City May 16 then heads to Sacramento. The trek from San Francisco to Santa Cruz begins May 18. Stay tuned. Learn more about the tour on our website.
In between all this, love is in the air as Valentine’s Day approaches. Have fun with that but don’t forget to toss some of that good juju your way the next time you pass a mirror. (It can’t hurt.)
More soon …
Greg Archer | Editor
Letters to Good Times Editor
Oh … Some Hope
We found your recent interview (GT 2/4) with new Watsonville Mayor and State Assembly hopeful Luis Alejo both interesting and revealing. Alejo appears to be a sincere, intelligent and academically accomplished young man. He mentions policy issues of importance to himself as being jobs, blight, violence and water availability (for agricultural jobs) in your article.
What seems revealing to us is what he fails to mention. What about environmental awareness and quality of life issues? As seems frequent with people who were born/raised here – such as himself – we detect a lack of appreciation for the value of what exists here as compared to the massive areas of urban sprawl from where many of us were fortunate to escape.
What about smart growth, smaller houses (we have twice as many square feet per person now versus 50 years ago), more efficient use of resources, alternative energy, smaller families, advanced transportation, etc? What about the fact that the population of Santa Cruz has doubled and that of Watsonville tripled in the last 40 years? Would Mr. Alejo be comfortable with seeing that pattern repeated in the next forty years? Would he support plans for UCSC such as existed in the late ’60s for a student body of more than 30,000 plus 15,000 staff and faculty jobs as well as their family members that would come to the area? Would he support other plans that would have allowed for the straightening of Highway 17, widening it to six lanes with spurs through Boulder Creek and down to Davenport and allowing housing for 10,000 or more additional families as well as a PG&E nuclear power plant UPWIND from the populated areas of Santa Cruz County? Perhaps the jobs created by a 17-story hotel and 6,000-seat convention center proposed for Lighthouse Field in the early ’70s would be acceptable to him. Would he agree with those who want to add more and ever more lanes to the freeways, or would he seek a more sustainable answer to our transportation needs?
Alejo would do himself and all of us a favor to consult with Assemblymember Bill Monning, who represents the district adjacent to the one Alejo hopes to serve. Monning has an excellent record on the issues Alejo mentioned as well as having put in much effort with legal representation for farmworkers and other progressive causes. However, Monning also has proven himself to be a leader on environmental issues; in fact, he is one of only two state legislators to receive a 100 percent on his voting record by the Sierra Club.
Hopefully Alejo will get clued in and receive some much needed awareness as a result of exposure to such consciousness. Otherwise, let’s hope for a strong Green Party candidate for the Assembly race in Alejo’s district!
Fred J. Geiger
Put it in Park
What a ton of facts. I appreciate the information found in your cover story on sustainable transportation (GT 2/4). Thanks for offering this. We all need to put it in park more often.