Plus Letters to the Editor
I began last week’s column with one word: Change. Maybe this week the word should be Transformation. It’s a fitting word, especially as the aftermath of last week’s upheavals in Eygpt continue to sink in. Transformation is good, but even better when one is aware of what kind of transformation is taking place—a quest for rights, freedom, democracy? Today in America, there are many who fight for those very same things. And while the culture’s obsesson with modern technology can sometimes distract or blur our focus on those who are making strides for greater civil rights, their efforts are nonetheless commendable and deserve notice, too. Civil rights activist Terrence Roberts spoke at UC Santa Cruz's 27th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Convocation earlier this week. A few weeks ago, Santa Cruz Next saluted a “quad squad” of locals forging ahead in innovative ways in their attempts to unite the community through their individual “progressive” projects.
Editor’s Note: This guest column is compiled by Patrice Edwards, Chair, board of directors, and Bill Tysseling, executive director at the Santa Cruz Area Chamber of Commerce, for the Board of Directors.
As business people, we understand the challenge of controlling costs and staying on budget. We understand, too, the challenge facing California and Gov. Jerry Brown as he struggles to plug a $25 billion budget hole.
But we also understand the relationship between costs and benefits. That’s why the Santa Cruz Area Chamber of Commerce opposes the governor’s plan to eliminate redevelopment agencies in California.
As California emerges from what has been termed the Great Recession, the need for redevelopment agencies has never been greater. And that’s especially true for Santa Cruz County.
So, there I was, loping through the San Francisco Chronicle last week. (We may surf the web, but a more laid-back and contemplative verb is required for perusing a newspaper in print) and there I found the article, "Book lovers turn the page on a new year," about Bay Area calligrapher Georgianna Greenwood. Early in January every year, she hosts a ceremony at the Center for the Book in San Francisco; eschewing the whole notion of New Year's resolutions, she invites participants to choose a single word to express their attitude toward the coming year—hopes, dreams, strategies, goals, coping mechanisms, whatever—and then draws or collages together a "talisman" to celebrate that idea. But the core is that word, one single word to express one's personal Zeitgeist for the new year.
Plus Letters to the EditorI’m a sucker for people making a positive difference, which is why you’ll be reading about a few locals who really shine in this week’s cover story. Truth is, sometimes it’s rare to come across a group of dynamic people whose individual efforts create a positive ripple effect. But those spotlighted this week—Analicia Cube, Doron Comerchero, Deutron Kebebew and Cliff Hodges—are a real treat. Cube gave birth to Take Back Santa Cruz, a collective of locals who gathered on a Facebook group page that have united the community in response to, and against, “drugs, gangs and abusive behavior” throughout Santa Cruz.