The Morning Report
Get the news and information you need to take on the day.
Concussions on the football field remain in the news for a simple reason: As we gain greater understanding of the risks from high school to the NFL, no one’s seemed to have figured out how to dramatically reduce the risk other than to just not let anyone play. And that’s not a serious option in a football-crazed country. So onward we go, learning almost every day about new cases, like the one we reported this week about a La Jolla High football player who stayed on the field despite an apparent concussion.
But, as VOSD’s Catherine Green explains in a roundup of news about concussions, something things are changing. Locally, there are signs that parents are becoming more cautious about letting their kids play football. And statewide, a new law limits the amount of time that middle- and high-school students can play in full-contact football drills. (Joel Anderson, a local state senator, voted no, saying, “I expect high school coaches to use common sense.”)
Meanwhile, a phone app, the “Heads Up” tackling method and improved helmets are all being touted as ways to reduce the concussion menace.
• U-T columnist Logan Jenkins read about the La Jolla High concussion case in our pages and writes that “any mother or father who does not accept the inherent risks in football is a fool… football is designed to bruise, to sprain, to hurt. It’s the sport’s nature.”
Police Review Board’s New Chief
The San Diego Citizens’ Review Board on Police Practices, which is supposed to keep an eye on misconduct among cops, finally has an executive director on board. She’s Sharmaine Moseley, who’d run a similar board in Albany, N.Y.
As Megan Burks explains, the Albany board has gotten criticized for almost always siding with the police. And there’s something else to keep in mind: The lack of bite in this watchdog board’s bark: “They do not have the power of subpoena and cannot investigate claims against police. They can only investigate how the department handled those claims, and they can’t force discipline or policy changes.”
Battered SeaWorld Wants to Grow
SeaWorld is beginning its bid to expand its space for killer whales, NBC 7 reports: “It will be first park to debut the new killer whale environments, named the Blue World project, with a planned total water volume of 10 million gallons, nearly twice as much as the existing facility. The new environment will also provide the world’s largest underwater viewing experience for guests.” We’ve explored the issue of what SeaWorld can build.
Something’s Fishy, Say Supes
County supervisors want state legislators to fix the law regarding the permitting of fish markets, an issue that’s created some headaches for local fishermen.
In Imperial County, a Cop Crisis
The Imperial County city of Calexico continues to face a crisis over its troubled police department, which is facing an FBI investigation. “It’s so embarrassing and humiliating; the crap that my cops have been up to,” the police chief tells KPBS.
Culture Report: General Tso’s Poultry
The VOSD Culture Report, our weekly look at all things arty, notes that the North Park Theatre is getting sold once again, a local culture couple has an amazing house, and some whimsical art is coming to one of our least whimsical places (North County).
A documentary is coming to town called “The Search for General Tso.” No, it’s not a History Channel extravaganza about WWII. This one, and I’m not making this up, is about the Chinese chicken guy. “The story of Chinese American food,” says the director, “is the story of thousands of families who have endeavored to make a living and gain acceptance in a country that at first rejected them.” (Sounds familiar.)
The movie doesn’t seem to have a San Diego focus, but Chinese Americans definitely do: They played a major role in the early days of the city, where San Diego had its own Chinatown and a museum downtown commemorates their legacy. We talked to the museum director a while back and heard tales of rough lives in old-time Chinatown.
VOSD has even tackled a Chinese food mystery. A few years ago, we tracked down Robin “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” Leach to ask him if a local Chinese restaurant was really his “favorite.” The answer: Kinda, even though he’d never eaten there. The restaurant earned a “Mostly True” verdict taken from the, um, buffet of Fact Check options.
Huh. Maybe shoulda gotten a “Misleading” with egg-fried rice on the side.
Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego and president of the American Society of Journalists and Authors. Please contact him directly at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter: twitter.com/rdotinga.