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Coastal Voices: Japanese boat’s long journey a symbol of hope

Editor’s note: This column was originally published by the California State Association of Counties on Jan. 8 and appeared at www.publicceo.com.

Almost two years ago I wrote in this blog about a small boat that had washed ashore in Del Norte County. There is nothing unusual about that up here on the North Coast, but there was something special about this small boat called a “panga.” Here’s what I wrote about it back in April of 2013:

Coastal Voices: Encourage young people to express opinions

Well, I have to admit it. I never knew how wrong I could be. The conversation began with her, my college sophomore granddaughter, talking about the problems in Ferguson, Mo., and New York City; then she made the statement that all police officers are corrupt, they all abuse their power and the “police force must answer for their transgressions.” And later, “White supremacists have infiltrated our police force.” Not sure I heard her correctly, I asked, “What about local Crescent City police officers? Are they corrupt?” She responded that they are unwittingly corrupt because of the power establishment that hired them that is also corrupt.

Coastal Voices: We all need a balanced perspective

First may I say I appreciate the changes I see coming about in all different areas of the Triplicate, since the change-over of editor, etc. I am not a subscriber, as having lived elsewhere in prior years I have read more “balanced” papers. Many times I may have been heard to say, or heard said, “Why waste my money? There’s not much of interest in this paper.” 

Pages of History: Barge nearly lost at sea

From the pages of the Del Norte Triplicate, January 1955:

Barge 14, loaded with 1,100,000 gallons of petroleum products, was a near sea casualty yesterday when its heavy towing bridle attached to the tug Sea Fox became fouled on a rock and broke at the entrance to Crescent Harbor.

Later the tug was able to tow it again to sea, where it was to await calming weather and assistance of the harbor boat Del Norte to effect an entrance and dock, it was reported by Oils Terminal manager Vince Hills.

Letters to the Editor Jan. 8, 2015

Elementary students loved Christmas gifts from prison

On Dec. 19, the Mary Peacock Elementary School community was blessed to receive an amazing gift from the employees at Pelican Bay State Prison. More accurately, we were blessed to receive over 115 gifts!  The PBSP employees made sure that every kindergarten and first-grade student received something that was on his/her Christmas wish list. Mrs. Claus made cookies for each child and the gifts were delivered by Santa and his elves.  

It brought such joy to the students and their families.  Children were amazed to find bicycles, scooters, dolls, art supplies and even camping gear. Many children exclaimed, “This is just what I wanted!  How did Santa know?”

Coastal Voices: The Triplicate: What are my expectations of it?

I could write this Coastal Voices Op/Ed and simply wish everyone a very happy and healthy new year. That would certainly be safe and benign. However, the subject of my opinion contribution is none other than the messenger herself, the Triplicate. 

Over the last several months my focus of criticism is the thrice-weekly published Triplicate of which I hold the opinion is not representing the community well and systemic changes need be implemented so all of us feel invested and have a voice in the community. 


Coastal Voices: Police must be held to a higher standard

We hear about police who abuse their power most often, simply because we can’t pat everyone on the back for doing what they’re being paid to do. With classism and corruption, along with the militarization of officers, comes victims that are all races and genders, and we need to realize that this is a problem that affects everyone. The police force, along with many prosecutors and judges, need to be scrutinized. Protesters across the country and around the world are speaking out against the abuse.

Black civilians need a spotlight, because they are being targeted far more frequently and violently than the rest of us. This is not pointing at individual officers, except perhaps those we have conclusive evidence against that have not been punished. I also understand police apprehend truly dangerous criminals. There is a decided difference, however, in how they handle white and black suspects, whether they prove to be innocent or not. And this is not just a police vs. criminal scenario, since black off-duty cops often get physically harassed and brutalized by white officers. 

Letters to the Editor Jan. 6, 2015

Take a stand against the ‘filth in our midst’

Why have we allowed the street people, alcoholics, addicts and bums to make us fearful on the streets and prisoners in our homes? Why do we allow them to make our parks and beaches unsafe  for our children to play in, unless you want them to see the lowlifes urinating, defecating and puking? Do you know how many local businesses have been driven out by them?  So many men have stories of their wives and daughters being accosted by these poor unfortunates for spare change and other unmentionables. Seniors are robbed and assaulted in their bedrooms, for goodness’ sake.  

Coastal Voices: A group dynamics lens for community building with social capital

Community leadership seldom has one leader and effective leadership is critical to how a shared goal is implemented, for solving problems, and completing projects. 

As a social entrepreneur, community building facilitator, and through pure personal interest and obsession, I am curious about processes that impact human behavior, impact models, and pathways for change within community social movements. Through attending the Ford Family Foundation’s Leadership Institute, I learned an array of strategies, styles, and models for community leadership. In addition to understanding my personal approach, I particularly appreciate lessons about group dynamics. I’m reminded of how critical relationships are to effective change and sustainable systems. 

Letters to the Editor Jan. 3, 2015

Community’s generosity was a big help to girl with autism

First off I want to say sorry this thank-you letter is late. I am the grandmother to Zyon Koon. She has autism. She needed more testing than what she could get done here to help us help her.

I am writing this letter to the citizens of Del Norte County. In November when we needed help with money for transportation costs and lodging, you all came through for her. For this a big thank you very much. We appreciated the help with finances during my granddaughter’s time of need. She made it to UCSF and had the tests done. She still needs more tests done, but for now she is doing fine. We have great businesses in this town that let us put our cans out for collection. To them we especially give you a big thank you.

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