Editorial: Another Opening, Another Show

By Becky O'Malley
Thursday June 19, 2008 - 09:30:00 AM

OK, political junkies. Now that the Democratic primaries are over, in the lull before the presidential election really picks up steam, it’s time to turn your fervent attention to the last remnants of decision-making which are left for the local voters, at least in Berkeley. Oakland has just about settled its council races, though the at-large councilmember’s slot is still open. But in Berkeley, at least in theory, you might still be able to influence what happens on the home front. -more-

The Editor's Back Fence

UC Berkeley Continues to Embarrass Its Graduates

By Becky O'Malley
Thursday June 19, 2008 - 10:48:00 PM

Thanks to Judge Barbara Miller's decision in the Oaks v. UC case, Wednesday lasted longer than it should have. The weekly Planet was all ready to send off to the printer at 6, when Redwood Mary called me on my cell phone, saying, "we won, we won!'" Reporter Richard Brenneman had already left, because we all believed that Judge Barbara Miller wasn't going to issue her long-delayed ruling, promised for yesterday, after all. -more-


The Threat of Gay Marriage

By Justin DeFreitas
Thursday June 19, 2008 - 10:28:00 AM

Tim Russert 1950-2008

By Justin DeFreitas
Thursday June 19, 2008 - 10:30:00 AM

Public Comment

Letters to the Editor

Monday June 23, 2008 - 03:57:00 PM

Letters to the Editor

Thursday June 19, 2008 - 09:31:00 AM


Our Children Ask: Where Are the Safety Nets? Where Are the Negotiators?

By Anamaria Sanchez-Romero
Friday June 20, 2008 - 09:46:00 AM

Our children were watching the evening news and saw the tree-sitters with the university police on the ground and the hired arborists up in the trees at the Memorial Stadium oak grove Thursday. -more-

Commentary: Storm Drain Project Threatens Tidal Lagoons

By Mark Liolios
Thursday June 19, 2008 - 10:03:00 AM

In the past decade, Berkeley’s Aquatic Park has been undergoing a striking renewal. Dreamland for Kids and the Addison Street bicycle/pedestrian bridge bring new life to the park, as do the community organizations that have established programs in park buildings. Habitat restoration along the bay shoreline has created new shelter for wildlife. However, these biologically rich tidal lagoons are at risk of repeated toxic contamination if the Berkeley City Council approves plans for a $2 million storm drain construction project. -more-

Commentary: Shining Stars of Activism Don’t Fade, But Ignite Next Generation of Activism

By Karen Pickett
Thursday June 19, 2008 - 10:06:00 AM

June 12 marked the one-year anniversary that our friend and comrade Hal Carlstad left us. He was well known and is missed by a great many people in the Bay Area peace, environmental, social justice, anti-death penalty, Unitarian, and anti-nuclear communities. Hal was everywhere. I first met him in the mid-1980s through Earth First! activities. He said he liked Earth First! because it was “less talk, more action.” It is the rare individual who, literally, every time he blinks his eyes he is thinking not of himself, but rather about what he can do next to bring about change, to build a more compassionate and just world. Hal was that rare individual. -more-

Commentary: Will We Have Instant Runoff Voting For Berkeley’s November Election?

By Merrilie Mitchell
Thursday June 19, 2008 - 10:09:00 AM

Instant runoff voting (IRV) could be in place for Berkeley’s local November 2008 election. The federal government and California’s secretary of state are expected to test new voting machines for IRV soon. If they pass inspection timely, IRV would be ready for the fall election. -more-

Commentary: Great Opportunities to Learn More About Israel-Palestine

By Henry Norr
Thursday June 19, 2008 - 10:07:00 AM

For those with an interest in learning more about the Israel-Palestine conflict than the mainstream media deliver, the Berkeley/Oakland area is a great place to live—not only because the Daily Planet often presents impassioned debates on the issue and KPFA delivers daily on-the-scene updates and background, but also because we get to hear directly from so many insightful visitors from the front lines of the struggle. -more-

Commentary:School Testing and the Achievement Gap

By Rick Ayers
Thursday June 19, 2008 - 10:09:00 AM

In pursuing the 2020 plan proposed by United in Action, that is up for adoption by the school board and City Council, the community of Berkeley will be taking on the admirable campaign to stop our schools from failing the majority of black and brown students. Such a campaign, however, requires that we examine the fundamental goals and practices of education before we charge off for a solution. Specifically, we need to be smart about the uses and limits of testing. -more-

Commentary: Safeway Needs to Scale Back Solano Expansion

By Sarah Baughn
Thursday June 19, 2008 - 10:10:00 AM

I recently reviewed the site plans and descriptions of the proposed expansion of the Solano Avenue Safeway on the safewayonsolano.com website with great concern and dismay at the oversize scale and boilerplate language about “enlivening and enhancing the area...to promote increased pedestrian activity and community pride. The unique design includes multiple retail spaces on the street level to enhance the flow and energy of the area and encourage shoppers to visit the store via foot or bike.” -more-