Column: Lame, Crippled, Insensitive And Politically Incorrect

By Susan Parker
Tuesday July 18, 2006

I was criticized by letter writers in the last three issues of the Daily Planet for stating that my husband Ralph is confined to a wheelchair. Brian Hill of Albany said he didn’t “mind being called crippled or lame” but “confined to a wheelchair” implied Ralph was “chained to it, with padlocks.” Ann Sieck seconded Brian’s opinion and said she, too, was “good and crippled.” Ruthanne Shpiner stated, “Language and its use or misuse is critical in forming how the public perceives everyone. Such terminology as ‘confined to a wheelchair’ is not only inaccurate, it is offensive.” -more-

Red Alert Issued for The Yellow Dodder

By Ron Sullivan, Special to the Planet
Tuesday July 18, 2006

One more scary invasive exotic plant has shown up in the East Bay. Susan Schwartz of Friends of Five Creeks issued a bulletin: -more-

Column: Undercurrents: What Did Ward Accomplish in the Oakland Schools?

By J. Douglas Allen-Taylor
Friday July 14, 2006

As far back as the spring of 2005, when State Superintendent Jack O’Connell was forced to come to Oakland Technical High School and release his legally required but long-delayed Fiscal Recovery Plan for the Oakland Unified School District, a group of Oakland educators and activists—led by Board of Trustees President Gary Yee—had been saying that the legal requirements had either been met or were close to being met for a return to local control of the Oakland schools. -more-

First Tibs: Exploring Ethiopian Food at Finfine

By B. J. Calurus, Special to the Planet
Friday July 14, 2006

With all the Ethiopian and Eritrean restaurants in Berkeley and Oakland, it took me a while to get around to Finfine. My loss. -more-

About the House: How Trees Do and Do Not Impact Structures

By Matt Cantor
Friday July 14, 2006

Your Honor, does this lovely Liquid Amber appear capable of doing harm to anything, let alone Mr. Filbert’s 1926 Craftsman bungalow? No, I tell you, it’s a lie, a myth, a hit and a myth! -more-

Getting the Real Dirt on Smuggled Plants and Seeds

By Ron Sullivan
Friday July 14, 2006

So you don’t wear sweatshop clothes or eat veal or plant invasive exotics. Now that the bulb and seed catalogues are starting to come in the email, there’s one more ethical matter to consider. -more-

Quake Tip of the Week

By Larry Guillot
Friday July 14, 2006

The Quake Hits—Now What? -more-