The Week



Press Release: Berkeley Fiscal Accountability Initiative Headed for November Ballot

From Barbara Gilbert and Jacquelyn McCormick
Wednesday May 16, 2012 - 05:05:00 PM

The Committee for FACTS turned in almost 4,000 signatures to the Berkeley City Clerk, more than enough to qualify its fiscal accountability initiative for the November ballot. -more-

Updated: Gill Tract Protesters Arrested by U.C. Berkeley Police

By Zack Farmer and Laura Dixon (BCN)
Monday May 14, 2012 - 10:22:00 PM

University of California police arrested nine people this morning who have been trying to make sure that a piece of the school's land in Albany is used for sustainable agriculture, a university spokesman said. -more-

Press Release: UC Riot Police Raiding Gill Tract NOW: Streets Blocked off; Police Prepared to Use Force

From Occupy the Farm
Monday May 14, 2012 - 09:45:00 PM

6:30 a.m.: At least seventy UC police in riot gear have closed off streets to the Gill Tract Farm and are raiding the site. They have locked and barricaded the gates to the property with dozens of people still inside. They appear poised to use force, and have already trampled and destroyed crops lanted by the Gill Tract Farming Collective. -more-

Flash: UC Berkeley Police Arrest Two Protesters, Order Others Off Gill Tract

By Laura Dixon
Monday May 14, 2012 - 11:03:00 AM

University of California at Berkeley police are moving in on the Gill Tract this morning to enforce the removal of protesters who have occupied the university-owned piece of land in Albany in recent weeks, university officials said. -more-

Protesters Plan to Stay on UC Berkeley's Albany Land Past Saturday Morning Deadline

By Patricia Decker (BCN)
Friday May 11, 2012 - 07:55:00 PM

The University of California is willing to cease pursuing criminal prosecution against protesters who have been occupying a university-owned parcel of land in Albany since Earth Day in the name of urban agriculture, university officials announced this afternoon. -more-

Small Group of Protesters Occupying UC Berkeley Admissions Office Detained by Police

By Bay City News
Friday May 11, 2012 - 09:42:00 PM

About a dozen protesters were detained by police this evening while occupying an admissions office at the University of California at Berkeley. -more-

In 1937, Aquatic Park was a New Berkeley Gem

By Steven Finacom
Thursday May 10, 2012 - 12:22:00 PM
A full-page image in the May 6, 1937 Berkeley Daily Gazette publicized the three daylong extravagant dedication of Berkeley’s Aquatic Park.

This week, when the Berkeley City Council majority moved closer to approving new zoning that could line the edge of Berkeley’s Aquatic Park with up to 100 foot high industrial buildings, was also, ironically, the seventy-fifth anniversary of a massive celebration that opened the park in 1937. -more-

Big Deal All Nighter at Cafe Mediterraneum on Telegraph Makes Berkeley History

By Ted Friedman
Friday May 11, 2012 - 08:04:00 PM
12:01, and Med remains open all night, to test 24-hour permission.

What's the big deal about pulling an all nighter at the Cafe Mediterraneum on Telegraph across from Moe's? -more-

The Center For Independent Living's Mobility Matters Program

By Annie Malev
Friday May 11, 2012 - 09:42:00 PM

No matter what one's circumstances are during any time in life, it's always nice to know what support and resources are available to help reach one's goals. -more-

Augustus Bart Berger, Jr. 1924 - 2013

Wednesday August 21, 2013 - 01:14:00 PM

Augustus Bart Berger, Jr., passed away on August 7th, 2013, in Berkeley, California, at the age of 89. He was known throughout his church parish as extremely kind, generous, and caring. He was active and alert and continued his charity work until the end. -more-



Berkeley Can Honor Sylvia McLaughlin by Continuing to Save the Bay

By Becky O'Malley
Thursday May 10, 2012 - 12:21:00 PM

Sylvia McLaughlin: “The Bay will always need saving.”

This week I had the great privilege of attending Save the Bay’s annual tea given to honor the organization’s founders. Of the original three doughty matrons who started it all in 1961, Kay Kerr, Esther Gulick and Sylvia McLaughlin, only Sylvia, now 95, is still with us.

There’s a movement afoot, spearheaded by the Citizens for Eastshore State Parks, to honor Sylvia McLaughlin by naming a park after her, a relatively small reward for a magnificent body of work for the Bay. They and their supporters want the California State Parks Commission to change the name of the Eastshore State Park, which hugs the edge of the Bay from the Oakland Estuary to the Carquinez Strait, to the McLaughlin Eastshore State Park. The Berkeley shoreline is part of the park, and Sylvia, a Berkeley resident, is also a founder of CESP. -more-

The Editor's Back Fence

Keep on Checking

Friday May 11, 2012 - 02:23:00 PM

Due to the usual server problems, things are up and down today. Keep on checking back--the rest will be posted eventually. -more-


Odd Bodkins: With or Without Ears (Cartoon)

By Dan O'Neill
Tuesday May 15, 2012 - 12:56:00 PM

Bounce: Try again..Schmy again (Cartoon)

By Joseph Young
Friday May 11, 2012 - 09:57:00 PM

Public Comment

Open Letter to Berkeley's Mayor and City Council Re Ballot Language Describing the Sunshine Intiative

By Dean Metzger For the Sunshine Ordinance Committee
Monday May 14, 2012 - 10:44:00 PM

Re: Agenda Item #38 (May 15, 2012) -more-

UC Berkeley's Gill Tract Suit is Nothing New

By Carol Denney
Friday May 11, 2012 - 09:38:00 PM

The lawsuit against the Gill Tract farmers is an expensive bullying tactic, and the regents have used it before. -more-

Berkeley City Council to Vote May 15 on Citizen Privacy Issues

By Jim Hausken, for the Safe Berkeley Coalition
Friday May 11, 2012 - 09:38:00 PM

The City of Berkeley is facing decisions on how to adapt law enforcement’s response to the vast power of the interagency communications and data sharing systems and still avoid civil rights abuses. Because the federal government is increasingly co-opting police all over the country, the city council must give appropriate guidance to the police if Berkeley is to protect the privacy, civil rights, and safety of its citizens. Adjusting how the BPD handles its involvement with federal and state information sharing programs in the age of Facebook and fusions centers is scheduled for a city council vote at the May 15 meeting. -more-

The Berkeley City Council Should Not Approve Police Agreement with Federal Agencies

By Carolyn Scarr
Friday May 11, 2012 - 09:50:00 PM

At the May 15, 2012 City Council meeting, I will be urging Mayor Bates and City Councilmembers to NOT APPROVE the proposed agreements between Berkeley's police department and the Northern California Regional Intelligence Center and the Urban Areas Security Initiative. Please join me. -more-


THE PUBLIC EYE: Conservative Brain Syndrome

By Bob Burnett
Thursday May 10, 2012 - 12:22:00 PM

Tragic news about the premature decline and death of retired football players has led many Americans to draw the obvious conclusion: decades spent bashing people with your skull will produce serious brain injury. Considering this, why don’t Republicans understand that years spent bashing their heads against reality inevitably produces the same result: diminished capacity and dementia? -more-

WILD NEIGHBORS: What Do Female Cowbirds Want?

By Joe Eaton
Friday May 11, 2012 - 02:13:00 PM

A few weeks ago Ron and I were having lunch with some friends in the California Academy of Sciences’ quasi-outdoor snack area, which is cheaper and has a significantly lower decibel level than the indoor food court. As is not unusual in al fresco cafes in San Francisco, we were surrounded by Brewer’s blackbirds waiting for a crumb to drop. There was also a male brown-headed cowbird, who seemed more interested in attracting a mate than grabbing a bite. He walked around, and sometimes under, our table, spreading his wings and singing: a kind of musical gurgle which has been verbalized as “glug glug glee” and “bublowcomseeee.” Alas, no female cowbirds showed up, and the blackbirds ignored him. -more-

ON MENTAL ILLNESS: To Disclose or Not to Disclose

By Jack Bragen
Friday May 11, 2012 - 07:49:00 PM

A man wrote in who wanted an opinion applicable to someone he had dealt with who had not disclosed their psychiatric disability. His question pertained to employment and other business dealings. The reader wondered about the disclosure of a disability, and being up front from the beginning, versus concealing a psychiatric condition. I believe that it is a significant question that most people with a psychiatric disability must face. -more-

SENIOR POWER: Gerontology 101: Now Hear This

By Helen Rippier Wheeler
Friday May 11, 2012 - 12:49:00 PM

Recommended reading, available online:

"Hearing loss linked to 3-fold risk of falling." American Association for the Advancement of Science, Feb. 27, 2012.

“Hearing loss a hidden -- and correctable -- problem for seniors” by Anita Creamer. Sacramento Bee, April 16, 2012.

Evelyn Glennie’s Hearing essay, 1993. Glennie is a 47-year old Scottish virtuoso percussionist, the first full-time solo percussionist in 20th-century western society. She has been profoundly deaf since age 12. -more-

Arts & Events

EYE FROM THE AISLE: “CREVICE” at Impact opens up dark laughter about Gen Y

By John A. McMullen II
Thursday May 10, 2012 - 12:22:00 PM
Reggie D. White, Marissa Keltie, and Timothy Redmond

I’m not usually a fan of absurdism or magical realism, but “CREVICE” by Lauren Yee is chock full of humor and enough info to keep you guessing at what’s happening. -more-

Eye from the Aisle: 16Th Annual BEST OF PLAYGROUND--good reason to cross the bridge

By John A. McMullen II
Thursday May 10, 2012 - 12:22:00 PM
Cathleen Riddley and Lauren English in Genevieve Jessee's SHIPS IN THE DAY

The 16Th Annual BEST OF PLAYGROUND is a good reason to cross the bridge on these warm nights. PlayGround has become the “feeder” for new plays for an increasing number of major Bay Area theatres, and once a year puts on its own show, this time with seven short plays. -more-