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Apr 19th
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Robbing Native Cradles

Robbing Native Cradles

Local nonprofit enlists help of UCSC interns to combat Native American exploitation

 “In the 1880s, under a U.S. government policy of forced assimilation, [Lakota] children as young as 5 years old were removed from their homes, shipped to boarding schools, and instructed in the ways of white culture,” reads a passage on lakotalaw.org, the website for the Lakota Child Rescue Project (LCRP).

A modern-day Robin Hood for many Lakota people—the indigenous people of the Great Plains—the organization is currently compiling a federal civil rights lawsuit in favor of the Great Sioux Nation.

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Town Hall

Town Hall with Assemblymember Bill Monning

Town Hall with Assemblymember Bill Monning

With the fall election drawing near, what is the outlook for Gov. Brown’s tax initiative on the November ballot? What are the possible outcomes if it does or does not pass?

The Governor’s proposed tax initiative, Proposition 30, would establish a temporary personal income tax increase on the state’s wealthiest taxpayers for seven years and an increase on all purchases made in California of one-quarter of one percent for four years in order to fund K-12 education, higher education, and public safety. 

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Local News

A Question of Choice

A Question of Choice

With the new school year comes a renewed debate over the future of charter school education

Crimson red banners and golden pennants from universities are the first things visitors notice upon entering Ceiba College Prep.

The second are the children themselves—recently returned from summer vacation, they animatedly slap fly swatters at a whiteboard in a geometry game, spout facts from an article about Asperger’s syndrome, and bow their heads in concentration to solve a math problem. In every classroom, a poster reads, “So much to learn. So little time.”

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Local News

Art and Democracy

Art and Democracy

A local artist’s quest to introduce art into U.S. politics

Andrew Purchin is packing up his easel and canvases after three days of painting at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla. The Santa Cruz artist, who is also a psychotherapist, will head to the Democratic National Convention next, which takes place in Charlotte, N.C., Sept. 4-6.

Art as a political statement is nothing new. But unlike the highly charged work of artist Mark Bryan, for example, whose exhibit “The Rupture” is at Leeds Gallery in Santa Cruz through Sept. 5, or the ice sculptures installed at the conventions to symbolize the melting middle class, Purchin’s paintings are the result of a more subtle, objective approach.

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Town Hall

Town Hall with Congressman Sam Farr

Town Hall with Congressman Sam Farr

What are the highest priorities, as well as the biggest obstacles, facing Congress when it returns to session in September?

When Congress reconvenes after the August recess, there are several issues we must address in a rather short window of time. This is a result of House Republicans refusing to work on any issue important to the American people. Their failure to lead has brought us to the point where every major bill is a priority in the final days of this Congress.  

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Local News

Riding A New Wave

Riding A New Wave

Thomas Hickenbottom‘s transformative battle with cancer 

Just before 8 p.m. on July 21, 2012, voices lower at the Gray Estate, where a large cancer benefit is being held in Thomas Hickenbottom’s honor. Santa Cruz City Councilwoman Lynn Robinson begins to read the Mayor’s proclamation:

“... and whereas Thomas Hickenbottom was an original member of both the O’Neill and Arrow surf teams, representing Santa Cruz in surfing contests up and down the California coast for over 30 years ...”

“... and whereas Thomas Hickenbottom served in the United States Army as a medic with two tours of duty in Vietnam from 1967 [to]1969 and tended the wounded during the Tet Offensive of 1968 ...”

More “and whereas” statements follow, highlighting Hickenbottom’s role in local surfing institutions (including the Santa Cruz Longboard Union and Westside Longboard Coalition, Santa Cruz Surfing Club Preservation Society, and Santa Cruz Surfing Museum), as well as his involvement with the community through Santa Cruz Little League, the Santa Cruz Old Timers, and local museums. Robinson then references Hickenbottom’s two books, “Surfing in Santa Cruz” and “Local Tribes,” before delivering the final words of the speech: “[I] hereby proclaim Saturday, July 21, 2012 as Thomas Hickenbottom Day.”

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Local News

Getting To The Roots

Getting To The Roots

Local groups make stopping youth gang enlistment a top priority

Once law enforcement knows the name of a young gang member, many social safeguards have already failed and it is too late to help much, says Santa Cruz Police Department spokesperson Zach Friend. The Wednesday, Aug. 8 fatal shooting of 13-year-old Joey Mendoza in Santa Cruz has focused local conversations about gangs on how to keep children from joining in the first place.

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Town Hall

Town Hall with Supervisor Ellen Pirie

Town Hall with Supervisor Ellen Pirie

You have voiced disappointment that the county’s $10 road tax did not make it onto the November ballot. Why did you hope it would go to a vote, and what do you believe the impact will be now that such a tax is postponed indefinitely?

The vote of the [Santa Cruz County] Regional Transportation Commission not to put the $10 vehicle fee on the ballot in November was a very close vote. Five commissioners wanted to put it on the ballot but six did not believe it was the right thing to do.

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Local News

Uneasy Negotiations

Uneasy Negotiations

Cabrillo support staff reports feeling the brunt of budget cuts

Luz Martinez says she sees lives instead of paperwork when she processes academic transcripts for transferring Cabrillo College students. With four sons in college, she knows how crucial timely delivery of these documents to universities from community colleges can be.

“If the paperwork doesn't get out to places like UC Berkeley and San Jose State in time, they could have their enrollment terminated,” says Martinez, who works in the school’s admissions department. “I don't want to jeopardize their future, but our office has already been reduced from 12 to 10 workers and it's getting harder and harder.”

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Local News

Making History Hip Again

Making History Hip Again

Santa Cruz duo starts historical walking tour company

In his fedora and three-piece vest, Ben Lilly resembles a rehearsing actor. He moves his hands animatedly, raising his voice to fight the sound of motorcycles, crashing surf and foot traffic around the Santa Cruz Wharf. His audience, a small group of locals and tourists, listens as he extols stories of a long-ago era.

The recent scene resembles a street performance, but is actually the first installment of Santa Cruz City Tours’ History Tour, a 1.5-mile jaunt from Pacific Avenue’s Memorial Square to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.

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Smells Like Team Spirit

The organizers of TEDx Santa Cruz don’t just talk about this year’s theme, ‘radical collaboration’—they live it

 

Pluto Retrograde, Aries New Moon, Lyrid Meteor Showers

As the Lyrid meteors, radiating from the star Vega in the Harp constellation, begin showering heaven and earth with light, Pluto, planet of transformation (or die) turns stationary retrograde (Thursday, April 16), 15 degrees Capricorn. Retrogrades have purpose, allowing humanity time to review, reassess, research and reinvent while returning to previous situations. Retrogrades are times of inner activity, seeds sown in bio-dynamically prepared soil. Pluto retrograde is the most serious and resolute of retrogrades—a pure tincture, or, as in homeopathy, a “constitutional” touching the essences of all that matters. Pluto offers deep insight into confusion or puzzlement and areas where transformation is still incomplete. It’s valuable to have one’s astrology chart to follow what area of life the major planets— especially Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto—are influencing. These outer planets have long-term and lasting effects on our psyche, inner/outer life events, how people see us and how we see and process our world. Pluto, retrograde for five months (until Sept. 24) offers deep earthquakes of change, awakens humanity to the task of building (Capricorn) the new culture and civilization, flailing our inner world about, deepening us until we transform and do things differently. Pluto is an unrelenting teacher. New moon (29 Aries) is Saturday, April 18. With the personality-building keynote, “Let form again be sought.” Mars anchors the new creative fires of Aries into our world. The New Group of World Servers participates together in the new moon festival, while also preparing for the Taurus Wesak, Buddha Full Moon Festival (May 3). Join us everyone.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of April 17

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
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Mighty Leaf

Radicchio from Dirty Girl Produce, wine etiquette fail, and a treat from Gayle’s

 

What would you like to see a TED talk about?

Hydrogen-gas cars that are coming this summer. Scott Oliver, Santa Cruz, Professor

 

37th Parallel Wines

I visited the Capitola Mall recently to check out the newly launched Third Fridays Walking Art Tour, and was surprised to find an impressive assortment of artwork from local artists.

 

New Bohemian Brewery

New Santa Cruz brewery focuses on European style lagers