As they ponder more than a bingo card’s worth of numbers on the ballot this fall, local voters can be forgiven for neglecting the debate over the state’s Prop. 57. The battle over this criminal justice measure has been low-profile in San Diego, even though the leader of the opposition is a familiar name: Kevin Faulconer.
San Diego’s mayor, as our contributor Kelly Davis reports, has been “relatively quiet” about the campaign against Prop. 57. While he’s responsible for a few thousand dollars in donations, he’s been “less successful in rallying support from a constituency that’s arguably the most impacted by the over-incarceration that Prop. 57 seeks to address: the black community.”
As Davis reports, the measure “would grant early parole consideration to certain offenders, allow inmates who engage in educational and vocational programs to earn good-time credits and give judges discretion over whether juveniles should be tried as adults (right now, district attorneys make that call).” Our own district attorney, by the way, is a supporter of Prop. 57.
• Faulconer was all in Tuesday, however, on another measure. He got a jersey from the Chargers for his support of Measure C and gave a hearty speech in favor of the plan to build a convadium in East Village at a press conference the team held at its headquarters. “It’s the right thing for San Diego,” he said. Meanwhile more money is flowing into campaign to defeat C. It’s real money but dwarved by the nearly $7 million the Chargers have put into the supporting campaign.
• Our election roundup for voters in the city of San Diego is one of our most popular posts of the year. Now, we’ve made a nicely designed, printable version you can get here.
Arts and Culture Report: San Diego Loses Two
San Diego lost two of its best artists this week. Kinsee Morlan remembers them in this week’s Culture Report. But the city did gain some public art. The series of seven metal sculptures, titled “Bright,” at the newly rebuilt Skyline Hills Branch library are the latest artworks to be added to San Diego’s civic art collection.
More on Elections: The Party Buckers
• The U-T followed up our reporting on the demise of the Middle College program at Lincoln High School (which once was seen as the great hope for the struggling school) and puts it in the context of the big school board election.
• inewsource finds that Rep. Scott Peters, a Democrat, and Rep. Darrell Issa, a Republican, are among the most party-bucking members of Congress, with Peters voting against most fellow Democrats 12 percent of the time lately, and Issa voting against most fellow Republicans 6 percent of the time.
• In other state proposition news, cops and prosecutors are warning that legalizing pot via Prop. 64 will somehow coax more people to smoke-and-drive than do now. That seems to be a questionable assumption at best (how many people actually don’t smoke pot now because they fear the law?). But foes do note that the state lacks standards regarding what exactly qualifies as drugged driving: How much THC do you need in your system?
Orchids and Onions
If you’re driving into downtown from the east, you can’t miss the garish hues of the Pinnacle on the Park skyscraper, which juts out of the East Village. “The tower has an unfinished look with gaudy yellow colors,” one Orchids & Onion nomination (for an Onion) complains. “Considering the tower stands alone and over 400 feet high, it’s an eyesore that calls attention to itself from virtually every angle.”
So did the project “win” an Onion at last week’s Orchids & Onions ceremony? Nope. How come? Because, it seems, the judges support fitting more people into smaller spaces, outward appearances be damned. “Maybe it wasn’t the best looking building, but the jury agreed the density was needed,” a program co-chair told the U-T. “It is a very controversial project — it’s giant. It was nominated for an Onion but it didn’t get an award, because they believe in density.”
Quick News Hits: Pork Chop on the Hoof
• With support from former state legislator and mayoral candidate Nathan Fletcher, a group called Honorably Discharged, Dishonorably Deported wants Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump to address the issue of veteran deportations during the debate today. We wrote about the issue earlier this year, reporting on a Tijuana-based outfit called The Bunker that supports former members of the U.S. military who’ve been thrown out of the country.
• Protests over the fatal police shooting in El Cajon heated up this week, sparking eight arrests, NBC 7 reports. Meanwhile, the U-T reports that “more than a dozen protesters who were arrested at a vigil for Alfred Olango in El Cajon on Oct. 1 filed a lawsuit Monday, claiming police wrongfully ordered them to disperse and violated their civil rights.”
• The U-T finds that the state’s database of deaths in police custody is shoddy, missing dozens in San Diego County alone.
• Somebody erected a cross in a Carlsbad park, and now it has to come down. (U-T)
• This little piggy may have tried to cry all the way home, but she didn’t have any luck. County animal officials say they’re holding onto a lost pig who was found in Spring Valley this month, NBC 7 reports.
A Facebook post says the owner can claim the pig by identifying “what she was wearing when she came to us.”
Hmm. Very mysterious. I’m going to guess that she was wearing a “Make America Great Again” cap and muttering about making the cows pay for the barn.
Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego. He is also immediate past president of the 1,200-member American Society of Journalists and Authors (asja.org). Please contact him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter: twitter.com/rdotinga.