The latest word from the Westboro Baptist Church, an anti-gay group based in Kansas, is that they will not be protesting in Alameda tomorrow night. According to their web site, they will be protesting at Barack Obama’s grandmother’s funeral in Hawaii instead. There is a pro-gay rights protest, planned in concert with protests nationwide, Saturday morning, 10:30 a.m. at Alameda City Hall.
Word is that the anti-gay group “God Hates Fags” is planning a protest of this Friday’s Alameda High School production of The Laramie Project. The play is about Matthew Shepard, a gay University of Wyoming student who was murdered in 1998. The protest, according to the group’s web site, is planned for 6:45 p.m., just before the show opens at Alameda High’s Little Theatre.
“God Hates Fags,” a project of the Kansas-based Westboro Baptist Church, is responsible for many other similar protests in the United States and Canada. (The Westboro Baptist Church is monitored as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, and is not know to be affiliated with any other Baptist Churches.)
Here’s details on a counter protest.
About 100 U.S. Marines, returning from Iraq, were welcomed by friends and family at a Barbeque in Alameda Sunday.
Dominik Svensson of San Jose was among the returning Marines, and he spoke evenly and with an almost subdued tone.
“We didn’t lose anybody, and we all made it back in one piece,” he said, and then nodded his head down as he hugged his daughter Noelle.
“But I’m just glad to see her, and see how much she’s grown while I was gone,” he said. “She’s much taller.”
The whole story is here.
Just as they’ve been across the country, voting lines were long this morning at Alameda’s Edison Elementary. [Left: Anna Martin walked over to the polls with daughter Esther. Right: Evan Ackiron with daughter Samantha waiting in line to vote. ]
I’ll have more on the election as the day goes on. If you’re still waffling, I recommend a big no on Prop. 8, which would deny same-sex couples the equal rights that have already been granted them by the California Supreme Court. For school board, I cast my votes for Ron Mooney, David Forbes, and Niel Tam. And here’s some info about the city’s Measure P.
Well it’s not surprising given the bleak economic times and the changing face of the traditional news media that the parent publication of this blog, the Alameda Journal, is going weekly. (I’m told the Alameda Journal was the last of the regional papers in the East Bay MediaNews Group to hold on to twice weekly editions, anyway.) In any case, you’ll still be able to get the Journal on Fridays and it’ll continue to hold valuable news about our town/city/suburb/urban center/island, and I’m sure we can continue to discuss just which category Alameda falls in to. Oh! I know you’re wondering: the column I write, Life on the Island, will run every other week and, yes, I’m told I’m going inside…where I’ll be somewhat safe from the foot steps and sprinklers that tend to blur my copy and photo when the Journal is left in the driveway or on the front stoop too long.
The Alameda Free Library Foundation, which raises money for programs, materials and equipment for our local libraries, has put together what sounds like a delightful evening.
There’ll be time for eating (with catering by Slow Food Alameda with help from Acquacotta, Cer’a Una Volta, Mona’s Table and Pappo), drinking (Rosenblum, Julie’s Coffee and Tea and The Beanery), and listening and thinking (Michael Pollan in conversation with Sedge Thomson).
The event will be at Auctions by the Bay Theater on Sunday, October 19 from 5 pm to 8 pm. It promises to be a wonderful evening. Tickets are $75 and available at Alameda’s Books Inc., Daisy’s, Marketplace, Lanvie, and Dewey’s Friends Cafe at the Alameda Free Library (and online at Brown Paper Tickets.) See you there…
There are five candidates running for three school board spots. Incumbents David Forbes and Janet Gibson are trying to hold onto their seats, and Trish Spencer, Niel Tam, and Ron Mooney have also throw their hats in the ring. Incumbent and current president Bill Schaff is not running and so the top three vote getters with join sitting board members Mike McMahon and Tracy Jensen (though, if Jensen succeeds in her quest for a seat on Alameda’s city council she’ll give up her seat on the school board). Alameda’s PTA Council and the Alameda Education Foundation are hosting a debate tonight at Alameda High’s Little Theatre at 7 pm. If you can’t make it, Alameda’s League of Women Voters is hosting a forum for the school board trustee candidates on October 15, details here.
Park Street’s Good Chevrolet announced yesterday that it was closing its doors after 58 years of business. The Alameda Journal‘s Peter Hegarty has the story. According to Alamedans blogger John Knox White, the store closed because of pressure from Chevy Financing:
Apparently, the Chevy’s Financing Company demanded that they pay down their inventory on Monday (rumored to be close to $2 million) and the Owner John Buono said “enough’s enough” and shut the doors.
You can read more about plans for the revitalization of that area, called the “Gateway District,” over at Michele Ellson’s The Island and at Lauren Do’s Blogging Bayport. (For good measure, here’s the City of Alameda’s page on the area.)