Animal-rights advocate Bryan Pease is no cool customer. As an activist, an attorney and even a candidate for City Council, he’s aggressive and assertive. Among other things, he’s pushed for years to protect the seals at La Jolla’s Children’s Pool, becoming a major player in one of our region’s most epic and long-lasting community battles.

So you might expect Pease would also want to protect the sea lions over at La Jolla Cove. Their poop is partially responsible for the infamous Stench that Ate La Jolla, but they deserve their place in the sun just like humans, right? Nope, says Pease, who’s representing a local hotel and restaurant that are steaming mad about the steaming mess.

In a new story, we ask Pease to explain why seals deserve protection and sea lions don’t. Because they’re different, he says, and the sea lions are more easily able to move.

Legislator Targets Cozy Campaign Fundraising

Local Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez is pushing legislation to forbid education administrators from raising money for the campaigns of the elected school officials they work for. “The practice was not uncommon in South County, where [the U-T] uncovered several instances of administrators seeking contributions from contractors for elected trustees,” the U-T reports.

South Bay remains embroiled in a massive corruption scandal that revolves around school officials and contractors.

Just When You Thought They Were Out …

… The mayoral candidates are back in. Yup, the campaign has restarted after a sleepy few holiday weeks. Perhaps you saw the political commercial on TV on Sunday during the big game and before “60 Minutes.”

As a public service, the Morning Report will keep an eye on the ads to make sure nobody grabs file footage from the mountains of Montana and tries to make it look local. (Yes, that happened.)

Meanwhile, the U-T has details about the six debates the two remaining candidates will attend before the Feb. 11 election.

Quick News Hits

• KPBS offers an audio report on our investigative report about the failure of San Diego cops to track the ethnicities of people they pull over in traffic stops.

• We’ve been tracking the sorry state of San Diego’s sidewalks and the efforts to fix them, which seem to have been sparked by our coverage. Our neighbors to the north in Los Angeles have decaying sidewalks too, and now Los Angeles Times columnist Steve Lopez is wondering whether the City of Angels should borrow money to fix them.

The estimated cost of the backlogged sidewalk repairs in L.A: $1.5 billion.

• The New York Times has published an obituary for Padres broadcaster (and onetime Pads manager) Jerry Coleman. The story highlights his brief career as a Yankees infielder and notes that he was the Most Valuable Player in the 1950 World Series. And there’s this tidbit: “As a Marine pilot, he flew in the Pacific during World War II and was recalled to fly during the Korean conflict, becoming the only major league player to survive combat in both wars.”

The story also notes one of his most famous verbal flubs, one that’s survived in legend for a generation: “Winfield goes back to the wall, he hits his head on the wall and it rolls off! It’s rolling all the way back to second base. This is a terrible thing for the Padres.”

• Yes, your 2014 does need a photo of a cheetah at the former Wild Animal Park with a bag on its head. (When this happens to me, I just call it Monday. But I digress.)

• We’re nowhere near the frozen wasteland that is the parts of the country caught in the polar vortex. But today’s the 101st anniversary of San Diego’s coldest recorded temperature — 25 degrees.

• The Chargers beat the Bengals, meaning that interim Mayor Todd Gloria won his bet with the Queen City mayor and will get Cincinnati chili (not universally considered a delicacy, alas), barbecue and ice cream.

Gloria tweeted that he’s “relieved not to have to wear a #Bengals jersey at my next press conference, even though I look amazing in animal prints.” (As a public service, we will not send that claim to San Diego Fact Check.)

With another playoff game coming, it’s now time for a San Diego vs. Denver bet. Some folks on Twitter provided some ideas, including “Rocky Mountain oysters.”

That is indeed a Colorado foodstuff. But I don’t recommend that you Google it.

Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego and vice president of the American Society of Journalists & Authors. Please contact him directly at randydotinga@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter: twitter.com/rdotinga.

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Randy Dotinga

Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego. Please contact him directly at randydotinga@gmail.com...

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