Category Archives: California

To Sing or Not to Sing in Church, That is the Question for the Gilroy High School Choir

4efb31eb4f085.imageChoir practice in a church makes sense, unless it is the Gilroy High School choir, which was told it was no longer allowed to utilize church buildings for practices or performances as mandated by the Superintendent, according to Jeremy Tedesco of Alliance Defending Freedom.

Senior Legal Counsel, Jeremy Tedesco, disagrees, “Gilroy Unified School District is wrong to end its longstanding tradition of allowing choir groups to perform in acoustically superior churches, hurting both the musicians and the local community. The choirs are not performing in the churches for any religious reason.”

Gilroy High School choirs have been performing for years in acoustically superior facilities, ranging from a variety of church buildings,  to the South Valley National Bank and the Elks club, to showcase their exceptional talent in the best facilities. The district is updating their facilities and talking to acoustic experts to make their own facilities a better place for the choir to practice, according to Jaime Rosso, Board President of Gilroy Unified School District. The board says it desires the students to use the facilities that are available in the school district.

Yet in the mean time, the choirs miss out on great sounding venues due to a few misguided complaints, and a Superintendent who does not understand the Establishment Clause. In a letter written by Jeremy Tedseco to the School board, he states that the nature of choosing a variety of neutral venues, based on the excellent acoustics upholds the Establishment Clause, and by denying the choir access to these venues, the School District may very  well be violating it.

Rosenberger, 515 U.S. at 839 ( “[A] significant factor in upholding governmental programs in the face of Establishment Clause attack is their neutrality towards religioñ’); see also Gaod News Club, 633 U.S. at 114 (“For the `guarantee of neutrality is respected, not offended, when the government, following neutral criteria and evenhanded policies, e~ttende benefits to'” religious and secular beneficiaries alike).

The board is re-evaluating their decision according to Central Coast News and will allow the choirs to practice in whatever facility they desire until the school buildings are renovated and the acoustics meet a higher standard.


Tim Donnelly and Rob Schneider Make Strange Bedfellows

1375916_439283946180400_1314186376_nHear ye! Hear ye! Will the people of California in favor restoring freedom and liberty to this great State, by removing Jerry Brown from his throne say, “Aye”?

This is a call that every Californian, no matter where their political ideology falls, should be able to support. The state of our State is grim, the leadership is negligent and the people are suffering at the hands of a progressive governor and legislature who are not only out of touch with the people, but aloof to the needs of those for whom they work.

We need someone who listens and represents the people. We need leaders who are defined by their actions, as servants of the people, not taskmasters. We need a Governor who has spine and stands up for the everyday citizen who daily rolls out of bed to support his family or the small business woman who dreams of growth, but is hampered by regulations and taxes. California needs a man or woman who will use this position of leadership and authority to move on behalf of the people and not on behalf self or special interest groups.

Is this impossible? Many say that it is, that this state is too far left and entrenched in a socialist agenda that it is past the point of return. Many say the Leviathan has grown too large. The State, however, is the People. The People are the ones who either starve the Leviathan, or feed it by not removing the corrupt caretakers from office. It is truly up to the citizens of California to give an “Aye” vote and replace Governor Brown.

Does anyone meet these demands? Who can rally both sides of the political spectrum to work together to restore this State?

Tim Donnelly, Assemblyman for the 33rd District, has been actively pursuing the hearts and minds of the people in California. He is fairly new to politics, running for Assembly in 2010, but has been successful in Sacramento, gaining unanimous support for his bills. His voting record demonstrates his core beliefs.

For the past year, Donnelly has been out talking with the people of California, listening to their needs and sharing his hope for California. In a conference call, he shared his strategy on garnering support. He said, “No one has really attempted a real grassroots campaign, a year solid, building out an infrastructure. I am grass-rooting business owners. One of the things that will help me is that I take an extremely strong position on the issues. (Such as) Immigration and the 2nd Amendment….” He gave numerous accounts on issues that both parties can get behind, and therefore where he can gain support. Single-issue voters can find a voice in Donnelly. He is willing to use his position as a bully pulpit to get the message out, and hammer away at the issue until there is resolution.

Conservatism and Hollywood generally don’t come together, they are more like archenemies, than playground buddies, yet early in October, Rob Schneider of Saturday Night Live fame endorsed Tim Donnelly. Schneider is a life-long Democrat.  He is giving his support to Donnelly in an all out effort to save California. He told the Washington Times, “As a lifelong Democrat, I am horrified by what’s happening in this State with the Democrat Supermajority now in the legislature in California. The Democrats in my party have abandoned me, and so I have abandoned them…..It’s not about being a Republican, it’s not about being a Democrat … it’s about doing what’s best for the State of California.”

Donnelly  finished his interview saying, “Most think this battle is impossible. It is an uphill battle. All I can say, that if the original Founders felt that way, we would not have a Country. I feel that about California, something has changed in the air. People who have money are sitting down with me. Sometimes we were born for such a time as this. There is nobody else in this state who wants to fight it. I understand the media gorilla warfare, I do. I think that this is one of those times that you have a message that appeals to people’s hearts, the message transcends political party.”

Photo Credit: Tim Donnelly Facebook


The School Success and Opportunity Act aka California’s Transgender Student Bill

ab-1266-dunk3Once again, my dear state of California has stepped out in what some call ground breaking legislation, paving the way for other states to follow.  It is ground breaking for certain, even earth shaking, which is apropos, coming from earthquake prone California.  Governor Brown has signed AB1266 into law, which “gives students the right “to participate in sex-segregated programs, activities and facilities” based on their self-perception and regardless of their birth gender.” This K-12 legislation will take effect in January 2014, but will face many lawsuits stemming from it implementation.

“They will be able to participate in activities, consistent with their gender identity…. rather than singling kids out specifically who are transgender identified, this is a way for them to feel like, they are just like their peers. They are treated exactly the same way” stated an advocate on a Foxnews.com interview.  Yet, this legislation, which helps such a small minority in comparison to the overall population of school children, does not in fact treat the students exactly the same but creates a legislative niche for the few, amongst the majority, whose voice has been muffled over the din of the organizations which have supported it.  For the transgender student who has had to deal with the struggle of which bathroom to use, the individual school district should make arrangements and not make it a big government mandate.

Proponents claim that this legislation will help with bullying, yet I submit that we have only seen the beginning of bullying that this legislation will ultimately foster.  Because the language of the legislation does not require bona fide evidence that one is transgender, any student may decide to be transgender for the day, giving them license to enter the opposite sex’ bathroom and locker room at will.  Bullying at it’s worst will happen.  I can imagine initiations and hazings to benefit from this law, where the perpetrators can cry protection under it’s umbrella, while the victim will be forever violated by what was supposedly meant to protect students.  Imagine showering after physical education, or a track meet with your fellow athlete, only to discover one’s body parts don’t match.  Imagine the junior high girl who has just gotten her period, walking out to find a junior high boy washing his hands in your once private sanctuary.  Imagine the 7th grade boy, hormonal, confused and naked with a bunch of girls, eager to humiliate the kid they are forced to shower with. The restroom, a place of escape and privacy, is now a facility of discomfort and embarrassment for all who don’t embrace this law. Bullying will take on an entirely new meaning.

According to Foxnews.com, Randy Thompson of savecalifornia.com, says the law would “damage” kids.

“This radical bill warps the gender expectations of children by forcing all California public schools to permit biological boys in girls restrooms, showers, clubs and on girls sports teams and biological girls in boys restrooms, showers, clubs and sports teams,” Thomasson said. “This is insanity.”

The very kids which this legislation was intended to “help”, will ultimately hurt all and the indoctrination of the youngest child “protected” by this law is perhaps the most heinous aspect.   What parent really supports telling their kindergarten boy that his gender identity, his penis, doesn’t matter now, and that if a little girl comes into his bathroom, he is just to be polite and ignore her?  The confusion that will occur at school for the elementary age child, a place where learning and play should be the priority, cannot be understated.  No longer is grammar school about reading, writing and arithmetic, but for the promotion of extreme propaganda, with the intent to inoculate young children to this radical agenda.

Parents of public school kids must have a new conversation with their children.  No longer is the golden rule enough, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you”, but rather the new rule, “avert your eyes when your transgender peer comes into your locker room or bathroom”.   “It’s not polite to stare” takes on a new meaning under AB1266.  No longer does the benign question, “how was your day at school” have an equally benign answer, as parents could have in response “fine, until a six foot tall man walked into the bathroom while I was changing.”  This is what progress looks like?

The supporters of this law have cataracts that cloud their mental vision and ultimately their ability to see the unintended consequences of the legislation.  They blindly lead their followers to the answer the seems to be the best, without regard for the whole of society.  It is “all about them” and their desires, without reflecting on how to meet the need they represent with the least amount of damage and disturbance to the rest of society.  If the need is a bathroom for the transgender student, then give them a bathroom, like a family restroom one finds at a department store.  If the transgender student wants to play on the opposite sex’ sports team, then allow the districts to work it out at the local level.  The organizations that have pushed for this legislation don’t want to take into account the whole of society, but want to force society to revolutionize from the top down, in a mass power grab.

The majority is without a voice in California.   We speak, and the liberal courts over turn, at the beckoning of the radical few who scream the shrillest.  We protest and we are labeled as haters. The good of society as a whole is no longer what drives the legislature here, but rather the radical ideas propagated by the loudest and many times most politically connected voices.  Our school kids suffer for it, and ultimately, the fate of California lies in the ayes of it’s liberal leaders.


I Voted

As I voted today, a little old man wandered into the Registrar of Voters, escorted by his son. His hat caught my eye, as it proudly displayed “Pearl Harbor Survivor“.   The son sat his elderly father down in a chair and went to retrieve the voting documents, as the war hero sat, quietly smiling and observing his surroundings.

After voting, I walked over to the men and thanked the war hero for serving his country. It struck me that this patriot, who survived a terrorist attack almost sixty-nine years ago, giving his all for his country, was still fighting the good fight and voting. What a tremendous example to us today.

What would those who have given their lives for our country, spanning the last two hundred thirty-four years,  think of the morals and politics of 2010?  Is the blood that was shed for freedom and liberty crying out in praise or pain over the direction of our Nation?

So many times we must settle for the better of two evils, because the best has not risen to the top of the candidate heap; but what are we doing daily to promote morality that will have a lasting effect on America?  Getting the best candidates in office, voting for or against propositions and being involved in this great democracy to steer it in the direction of freedom and liberty is crucial, however, our daily choices as citizens have a greater effect on this nation, than one man or woman elected to a political office.  The politician may be our voice, but “We the People” are the arms and legs that move this nation toward or away from its moral foundation.  Our movement has been at a sprint like speed, away from morality and religion, so we must make an effort to return to the heights from which we have fallen.

‎”Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” ~ John Adams

We are no longer a moral and religious people.  We are religious in name only and because of this, we have no moral compass.  If what John Adams says is in fact true, then our Constitution is inadequate for this nation.  So do we re-write the Constitution, a document that has been the example for so many countries around the world, or do we change the people?

Daniel Webster (1782-1852) — United States Senator from Massachusetts and Secretary of State stated:

No truth is more evident to my mind than that the Christian religion must be the basis of any government intended to secure the rights and privileges of a free people.

To preserve the government we must also preserve morals. Morality rests on religion; if you destroy the foundation, the superstructure must fall. When the public mind becomes vitiated and corrupt, laws are a nullity and constitutions are waste paper.

Vote, for it is one’s civic duty;  but live a life that demands morality and upholds religion, for this is in fact what will secure “the rights and privileges of a free people.”


California and Cannabis

Doing research on marijuana is quite a “trip”; while finding videos to post that are “G” rated on the subject is near impossible! Venice Beach, California is a place where medical pot is found aplenty and pushing for legalization is on every corner. Business cards are distributed by Hashbar.TV to visitors of the Venice boardwalk and even minors are handed the propaganda.

Californians will be voting on the legalization of marijuana this November. To argue with the proponents of legalized marijuana is like arguing with idiots, yet the issue is now on the ballot and therefore the discussion must be had. Most of the arguments for legalized pot use, play on the sentiment that those who need it medically, can obtain it more easily, if it were legal for all; or that legalization will cut down on the Mexican drug war and destroy the black market, allowing bankrupt California to tax the product, putting dollars back into her coffers.

The “Yes on 19” webpage states that  Proposition 19 will:

Control cannabis like alcohol.

Put our police priorities where they belong.

Generate billions of dollars in revenue.

The proponents claim that because California has a failed policy “causing massive harm”,  it should be replaced with a “legal, controlled market, all while eliminating enforcement costs and bringing in new tax revenue.”

Yet the language of the proposition “may be the worst drafted legislation since 1996…” according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.

The Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Act of 2010

Legalizes marijuana under California but not federal law.  Permits local governments to regulate and tax commercial production, distribution, and sale of marijuana.

• Allows people 21 years old or older to possess, cultivate, or transport marijuana for personal use.
• Permits local governments to regulate and tax commercial production, distribution, and sale of marijuana to people 21 years old or older.
• Prohibits people from possessing marijuana on school grounds, using in public, or smoking it while minors are present.
• Maintains prohibitions against driving while impaired.
• Limits employers’ ability to address marijuana use to situations where job performance is actually impaired.
Summary of Legislative Analyst’s Estimate of Net State and Local Government Fiscal Impact:
• The fiscal effects of this measure could vary substantially depending on: (1) the extent to which the federal government continues to enforce federal marijuana laws and (2) whether the state and local governments choose to authorize, regulate, and tax various marijuana-related activities.
• Savings of potentially several tens of millions of dollars annually to the state and local governments on the costs of incarcerating and supervising certain marijuana offenders.
• Increase in state and local government tax and fee revenues, potentially in the hundreds of millions of dollars annually.

 

Recent polling shows most Californians oppose Proposition 19.  The statewide Reuters/Ipsos poll conducted October 2-4 shows California voters rejecting Prop. 19 with 53% voting “No” and 43% voting “Yes.”

When one visits a place where medical marijuana is prevalent and the users of the drug wander the boulevard stoned, one must ask, “Is this what all streets of California will look like if all may freely partake?”    When Democrats are even voicing “Vote no”, one must realize that this proposition is bad business.  Democratic pollster Pat Caddell made a brilliant and humorous point on Hannity’s Great American Panel stating, “California has made smoking a capitol offense, yet they want to legalize pot.”  Even Richard Eastman an activist who was instrumental in opening  one of the first medical marijuana buyers clubs in California says to vote no on Prop. 19.

What begins on this left coast ends up wafting into the rest of America. What say you America? Are you ready for Cannabis on every corner?


President Clinton Throws Jerry Brown Under the Bus

California’s Governor seat is up for grabs in just 53 days. According to the most recent telephone survey taken by The Rasmussen Report, Meg Whitman has 48% support of likely California voters to Jerry Brown’s 45%. Today, Meg Whitman’s Campaign released the following political advertisement statewide.

To use Bill Clinton in this political spot to undermine Jerry Brown is a brilliant move. Whitman can let the Democrats destroy themselves in their own words, while she continues to push her vision for California.
Well played.


California’s Prop 8: Yes, No, Maybe?

When a California judge ruled that Proposition 8 was unconstitutional,  most were not shocked.  The victory at the polls on November 5, 2008 was to be short lived and those who supported California Marriage Protection Act knew that the battle was far from over.  On August 4, 2010, U.S. District Judge Vaughn R. Walker decided that Proposition 8 violated the U.S. Constitution.  The voters of California have voted twice to make marriage defined as “between a man and a woman”.  Proposition 22, voted on in 2000 and passed with 61% of the vote, was ruled unconstitutional under California’s constitution. Interestingly, the statute is very close in wording to the federal Defense of Marriage Act, enacted in 1996 by Congress.  Proposition 8, a constitutional amendment initiative, was drafted to override the Court’s ruling by using the language in Proposition 22, “Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California” as a constitutional amendment.  It too passed with 52.24% of the vote.

On Monday, August 16, 2010, a federal appeals court put a hold on U.S. District Judge Vaughn R. Walker‘s ruling, halting the same-sex marriages in California until at least December.

Loyola Law School professor Richard Hasen stated,

“I think there are strategic reasons why even the most ardent supporter of gay marriage could opt for a stay,” said Hasen, an expert on federal court stays. “The concern is that rushing things to the Supreme Court could lead to an adverse result [for supporters of gay marriage.] If this case takes another year to get to the U.S. Supreme Court, there could be more states that adopt same-sex marriage and more judicial opinions that reach that conclusion.”

Sadly, this argument adopts an evolutionary legal philosophy which holds that precedent and legal opinion somehow trump foundational truths found in the Constitution, as well as thousands of years of tradition.  Again, the virus of ethical relativism has infected all areas of life and spreads the disease using the ideology of tolerance and progress.

Those who stand for morality must never “rest on their laurels”, for the opponents will not rest either.  A battle may be won, but another will emerge, for that is the nature of this world; but to gain ground, only to lose due to complacency, is not an option.  The citizens in California who voted for Proposition 8 must continue to press the issue, and not cave to activist judges and an irate gay community.   Morality is not a shifting sand ideology, but one based on a foundation that is immovable.  It can however be covered with layers of superficial silt, produced by activist judges and a society with no moral tether.  Be diligent, don’t sleep and continue the good fight.