In case you haven’t already heard, longtime local pot-stirrer Robert Norse was granted a re-hearing of the City of Santa Cruz vs. Norse case when an 11-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco announced Friday, March 12 that they will grant another look. Norse originally filed suit in 2002 for unnecessary arrest following his removal from a city council meeting for making a silent Nazi salute to then-Mayor Christopher Krohn. The case was dismissed by a federal judge, whose decision was backed up by a three-judge panel at the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals last November. A video of Norse’s 2002 council meeting arrest is available on YouTube.
UCSC faculty takes UCSC administration head on in a recent letter to the community
Fifty faculty members have signed an open letter to the UC Santa Cruz campus community in support of the strike and protest that happened on March 4. Notable faculty signatures include those of History Professor Dana Frank, American Studies Chair Eric Porter, and Kresge College Provost Juan Poblete. Last week’s protest and strike effectively shut down the base of campus preventing most workers, teachers, and students from going to work or class.
“It is true that the demonstration successfully stopped ‘business as usual’ on the UCSC campus,” the letter says. “While this may have represented an inconvenience for some, it perhaps bears repeating that no significant social change occurs without some inconvenience.”
Twelve UC Santa Cruz students from the school’s CALPIRG (California Public Interest Research Group) chapter will meet with Senator Diane Feinstein on Friday, March 12 at her San Francisco office to tell their healthcare horror
stories. They will present her with a 5 foot tall “Get Well Soon” card filled with over 200 stories from individuals who have felt the wrath of an unjust healthcare system. In a March 8 press release, the group said, “UCSC
students have been greatly affected by the lack of health care reform and are tired on inaction in Washington D.C. It is critical that legislators hear from their student constituents on this issue which usually thought of as an issue affecting primarily the elderly and those with families.”
Local youth gets recognized for his commitment to animal rights work
Whoever thinks teenage boys are too busy playing video games to do anything productive obviously has never heard of Beau Broughton. The 17-year-old honor student at San Lorenzo Valley High School founded the SLVHS Animal Rights Club earlier this school year, and has been busy organizing local protests and guest talks by animal rights activists ever since. His group has held a vegan bake sale to help raise relief funds for Haiti after the earthquake, collaborated with Saturn Café for a benefit for the Farm Sanctuary, and much more.
Thousands participated in statewide Day of Action to defend public education
By April M. Short
In solidarity with the nationwide protest against the State’s increased budget cuts to education, a large crowd stretched out from the front steps of the building and across expansive lawns.
College students, professors, parents and kids as young as 5-years-old raised signs with messages such as, “Educate our State,” and “Last Generation College Student,” in front of the California state capitol building in Sacramento on Thursday, March 4.
Speakers ranging from assembly members to students, parents, and professors pleaded for restored federal aid to education by any means necessary, and rallied supporters from a microphone at the foot of the capitol steps.
In the last week of February, the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County announced that they were dropping SB 211, a piece of state legislation that would have allowed Santa Cruz County to put a measure on the ballot to create and open space district. The Land Trust has been working toward establishing an open space district (an area with protected scenic lands, water supply and productive farms and forests) for years, but has decided that they jumped the gun on authoring the legislation for it. “By withdrawing the proposed legislation, we are able to go back to the drawing board and rethink our way forward,” said Executive Director Terry Corwin in a Feb. 26 newsletter.
UCSC researchers use game to explain findings on speciation
What does the game of rock-paper-scissors have in common with speciation? More than you may think, according to a paper by researchers at the University of California, Santa Cruz, published this week in the online early edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).
The idea that morphs within the same population could eventually evolve into separate species is not a particularly new one. But a study by researchers Barry Sinervo, a professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at UCSC, and Ammon Corl, who led the new study as a graduate student at UCSC but is now a postdoctoral researcher at Uppsala University in Sweden, about side-blotched lizards finds new evidence to support the theory.
La Selva Beach resident Ronald Schusterman, best known for his research on the hearing, vision, and cognitive abilities of marine mammals, died on Feb. 11 at the age of 77. Throughout his life, Schusterman had many notable achievements, among them was helping debunk the idea that pinnipeds use echolocation and demonstrating that sea lions can understand syntax and a serious of commands. In 1985, Schusterman moved his research program to UC Santa Cruz's Long Marine Laboratory, where he conducted experiments to understand how California sea lions, harbor seals, and elephant seals think about the world around them. He helped establish the lab’s reputation as a leading center for marine mammal research. Schusterman was also a research marine biologist and adjunct professor of ocean sciences at UCSC from 1985 until his retirement in 2003. A memorial service is being planned for Sunday, Feb. 28. For more information, contact [email protected]