Sunday, January 15, 2017

HumBug: No Bugs Today

Posted By on Sun, Jan 15, 2017 at 3:00 PM

A red headed sapsucker inspecting a pepperwood for bugs in my yard. - ANTHONY WESTKAMPER
  • Anthony Westkamper
  • A red headed sapsucker inspecting a pepperwood for bugs in my yard.

Last week, for the first time in several hundred excursions along the Van Duzen River spanning over 20 years, I saw no bugs. Only the sad remnants of a few abandoned spider webs and a bit of residual leaf damage testified to their existence. Despite a lifetime of experience at picking out tiny critters and a bit of effort, the cold and rainy weather had pushed them all into dormancy and hiding.
A robin taking a worm in my front yard. - ANTHONY WESTKAMPER
  • Anthony Westkamper
  • A robin taking a worm in my front yard.
There were however, a great many birds looking for bugs as if their lives depended on it. That's because they do. Insects, spiders and other creepy crawlers are the basic food group for many birds, reptiles, fish and amphibians.
A bluegill (photographed this summer) feeds mostly on aquatic insects. - ANTHONY WESTKAMPER
  • Anthony Westkamper
  • A bluegill (photographed this summer) feeds mostly on aquatic insects.
Because they are a place in the biosphere where proteins and other essential nutrients are concentrated, species like swallows and bats are adapted to be strictly insectivorous and many more take supplemental bugs as a part of a balanced diet. Hummingbirds take small flying insects and collect spider silk to line their nests.
An adult swallow going out for another order of regurgitated bug for the kids. - ANTHONY WESTKAMPER
  • Anthony Westkamper
  • An adult swallow going out for another order of regurgitated bug for the kids.
No matter the weather I always see something marvelous in the woods.


  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , ,

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Eureka Council Prepares to Pass Human Rights Resolution

Posted By on Thu, Jan 12, 2017 at 5:03 PM

Kim Bergel - CITY OF EUREKA
  • City of Eureka
  • Kim Bergel
Tuesday the Eureka City Council will consider adopting a strongly worded resolution that delineates city attitudes toward the rights of immigrants, women, the LGBTQ community, people of color, people of all faiths and the environment.

While never mentioning President-elect Donald Trump by name, the resolution, as proposed by Councilmember Kim Bergel on Dec. 13, seems a clear referendum on his campaign and agenda. Other cities, including San Francisco and Arcata, have passed resolutions or made proclamations since Trump's election declaring implicit opposition to his policies, but this would be a historically unprecedented decision for the city of Eureka.

The resolution, titled the "Human Rights, Inclusiveness, Environmental Sustainability, Affordable Health Care, and Religious Freedom Resolution," was moved to the agenda in December by council consensus.

The resolution, copied in its entirety below, says the city will support women "on women’s rights, whether in healthcare, the workplace, or any other area threatened by a man who treats women as obstacles to be demeaned or objects to be assaulted." It declares opposition to conversion therapy. It says "climate change is real." It says "affordable, universal healthcare should be a continuing priority."

The Journal could not reach Bergel for comment, but we did reach out to the city for clarification on another item, which she also brought up on Dec. 13.

"One and a half years ago we had talked about giving the island back to the tribe, and I was hoping we could have an update on that," she said, referencing the proposed return of 60 acres of Indian Island to the Wiyot Tribe, which tribal chairs requested in 2015. The city resolved last April to return the land, but no apparent further action has been taken. City Clerk Pam Powell said the matter will be discussed in a future meeting, but not next week.

Among other items to be discussed on Jan. 17 are an extension of the city parklets program, rezoning of a parcel near the Eureka Mall, and a presentation by the Parks and Recreation Department on the opening of the Waterfront Trail.

The proposed resolution:


RESOLUTION NO. 2017 - RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL IN SUPPORT OF HUMAN RIGHTS, INCLUSIVENESS, ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY, AFFORDABLE HEALTHCARE, AND RELIGIOUS FREEDOM

WHEREAS, in light of the current climate in our country and the negativity and hate that is being fostered;

and WHEREAS, Eureka will not turn our back on the men and women from other countries who bring such richness to our city. We will continue to build bridges, not walls;

and WHEREAS, we will never back down on women’s rights, whether in healthcare, the workplace, or any other area threatened by a man who treats women as obstacles to be demeaned or objects to be assaulted. And just as important, we will ensure our young girls grow up with role models who show them they can be or do anything;

and WHEREAS, that there will be no conversion therapy, no withdrawal of rights in Eureka. And to all the LGBTQ people in our city and all over the country who feel scared, bullied, or alone: You matter. You are seen; you are loved,

WHEREAS, that we still believe in this nation’s founding principle of religious freedom. We do not ban people for their faith. And the only lists we keep are on invitations to come pray together;

and WHEREAS, the Eureka Police Department is committed to building trust between police and communities of color so all citizens feel safe in their neighborhoods;

and WHEREAS, our residents are committed to environmental sustainability, and that climate change is real, and that clean power, zero waste, and other measures to protect future generations are a priority;

and WHEREAS, affordable, universal healthcare should be a continuing priority for the State of California and the United States.

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the City Council of the City of Eureka, condemns all hate crimes and hate speech we will fight discrimination and recklessness in all its forms. We place the highest value on human rights. Further Resolved, that this resolution be forwarded to Senators Feinstein, Harris, and Representative Huffman to demonstrate our City’s commitment to fairness and inclusion.

  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , , ,

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

SoHum Locals, former HSU Students Make Prestigious Forbes List

Posted By on Wed, Jan 11, 2017 at 5:07 PM

FORBES MAGAZINE
  • Forbes Magazine
Three Humboldt State University students, two of whom grew up in Southern Humboldt, were recently featured in Forbes Magazine's 30 Under 30 list for their entrepreneurial success in the manufacturing and industry sector.

Mike Radenbaugh, Tyler Collins and Marimar White-Espin cofounded Rad Power Bikes, an electric bike company headquartered in Seattle. The design for the bikes began in 2007 when Radenbaugh, then a student at Southfork High School, was struggling to get to class.

"It was pretty much out of necessity," said Collins. "The school bus didn’t go out to where he lived and the car was always breaking down. He pretty much taught himself everything he needed to know about electric bikes and started making them."

Collins, who grew up in Piercy, had known Radenbaugh since kindergarten; the two became roommates by chance at HSU. They and White-Espin became friends and began making electric bikes as a "passion project" as they finished their degrees, seizing every excuse to redirect class assignments into the bikes. They continued work on the bikes after graduating and going their separate ways, with Collins, a journalism major, working briefly in public relations in San Francisco.

In late 2014, the trio decided to transition from making custom bikes as a side job into embracing the work as a full-time career. They set up a production line and began manufacturing four different kinds of bikes, building what Collins calls a "sizable customer base."

A few months ago they were contacted by Forbes Magazine with the news they had made the first round of judging for the list of what Forbes calls the "brightest young entrepreneurs, innovators and game changers." They didn't hear anything else for several weeks but on Jan. 3 the news came in: They had made it.

"After hitting refresh on the page for the 5,000th time, we found out with the rest of the world," said Collins. There may have been some jumping up and down.

Collins said it was a "pretty big moment" and that the list was "a pretty good club to be in," but most of all they hope their story can inspire other young people, especially in Southern Humboldt.

"That’s one of the big things we were trying to get out of being named to this list, is some positive influence to the youth," said Collins.

Editor's Note: This article has corrected to reflect the information that Collins and Radenbaugh have known each other since childhood.
  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , ,

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Homeless Count Postponed

Posted By on Tue, Jan 10, 2017 at 3:47 PM

A camp in one of Humboldt County's greenbelts. - FILE
  • File
  • A camp in one of Humboldt County's greenbelts.
This year’s biennial Point-in-Time count will be postponed one month in order to recruit more volunteers to assist the homeless count.

The count, scheduled to take place at the end of January, will be pushed back to the early morning hours of Feb. 28.

Every year the Department of Housing and Urban Development requires communities to take count of people living in emergency shelter or transitional housing. The last count, conducted in 2015, found 1,319 people to be homeless in Humboldt County, up 265 from two years prior.

This year, volunteers will receive required training from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development in order to assist in the count. Volunteers will be asked to go to areas throughout the local communities where homeless people are known to be and take a headcount.

Sally Hewitt, senior program manager and co-chair of the Humboldt and Homeless Coalition, said pushing the date back will give organizers time to recruit more volunteers, including Humboldt State University and College of the Redwoods students.

“Participating in the count is also a great opportunity for students looking to volunteer and get some experience doing outreach to the homeless community,” Hewitt said in a press release.

The information gathered during the count will go to local planners and nonprofit agencies in order to receive grant funding. At the end of the year, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development will award agencies a total of $822,933 in homeless assist funds for 2017.

The Arcata House Partnership will act as a volunteer hub in assisting this years Point-in-Count. Darlene Spoor, Executive Director of Arcata House Partnership, said the date was pushed back in order to create a better survey and help volunteers become better prepared.

For more information about the Point-in-Time homeless count, or if you are interesting in volunteering, contact Wendy Choate, secretary at the Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services, at 441-5520.


See the full DHHS press release copied below:

Volunteers still needed for Point-in-Time count


This year’s Point-in-Time (PIT) homeless count has been postponed by one month as recruitment for volunteers continues. Originally scheduled for the end of January, the PIT count will now take place in the early-morning hours of Feb. 28.

“Pushing the date back gives us time to recruit more volunteers, including students from Humboldt State University and College of the Redwoods who have been very helpful with the counts in years past,” said Sally Hewitt, DHHS senior program manager and co-chair of the Humboldt Housing and Homeless Coalition (HHHC). “Participating in the count is also a great opportunity for students looking to volunteer and get some experience doing outreach to the homeless community.”

Volunteers attend training so they’re ready to assist in the biennial count, which is required by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Information gathered during the count is used by local planners and nonprofit agencies in applications for grant funding.

At the end of the year, HUD awarded participating HHHC agencies a total of $822,933 in homeless assistance funds for use in 2017.
For more information about the PIT or to volunteer, contact DHHS Secretary Wendy Choate at 707-441-5520. Information is also available at the HHHC’s website humboldthousing.org.






  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

CHP Seeks Help to Find Hit and Run Driver

Posted By on Tue, Jan 10, 2017 at 2:50 PM

chp-patch.gif
UPDATE: The CHP has identified a possible vehicle in the hit and run – a Toyota Prius, a 2010 to 2015 model.

In its press release the CHP says "the vehicle will have little to no damage to the front bumper area. The vehicle will have a missing, front, driver side fender wall."

Previously:

Benjamin Lee Taggart, a 21-year old man who died from a major head wound on Jan. 5 after being found near the Eureka Slough Bridge, was the victim of a hit-and-run, says the California Highway Patrol. Taggart, who family say suffered from mental illness and was prone to wandering, was found at 12:20 a.m. near southbound U.S. Highway 101.

The CHP is investigating Taggart's death and seeks the public's help finding the suspect vehicle, which may have damage to the front driver side and bumper/fender area. Taggart is the second road death of 2017; on New Year's Day a driver rolled his car near Kneeland in what is suspected to be a DUI.

From the California Highway Patrol:

UPDATE: The California Highway Patrol (CHP) Humboldt Area has taken the lead in investigating the death of a 21 year old man on US-101. Over the weekend an autopsy was performed and the pathologist ruled the death to be a traffic collision. At this time the CHP is following up on several investigative leads. We are looking for assistance from the public. The suspect vehicle may have damage to the front driver side bumper/fender area. If anyone has any information that may help identify the person responsible in the death of this young man please contact the Humboldt CHP Office at (707)822-5981 during business hours or the Humboldt Communications Center at (707)268-2000 after business hours.


ORIGINAL PRESS RELEASE:


SUSPICIOUS CIRCUMSTANCE ON US-101


EUREKA, Calif. – On the morning of Thursday, January 5th, a 21 year old man sustained life threatening injuries following an unknown occurrence.


At approximately 12:20 am, Humboldt Area CHP responded to a report of a pedestrian in the roadway near southbound US-101 just north of the Eureka Slough Bridge. When CHP Officers arrived on scene they located an unresponsive man, lying on the left shoulder with a major head injury. The man was transported by ambulance to St. Joseph Hospital. No vehicle’s or witnesses were located at the scene. Due to the lack of physical evidence it is unclear at this time if it was a traffic collision or other circumstances that lead to the injuries sustained by the man. Humboldt Area CHP and Eureka Police Department are working diligently together to determine the cause of the incident. 

  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , ,

Monday, January 9, 2017

Flooding Expected on the Eel, Van Duzen

Posted By on Mon, Jan 9, 2017 at 2:21 PM

A Mercer Fraser Co. crew rescues a stranded hiker near the Eel River this morning. Officials are warning of more flooding to come as rain continues to fall this week. - FACEBOOK
  • Facebook
  • A Mercer Fraser Co. crew rescues a stranded hiker near the Eel River this morning. Officials are warning of more flooding to come as rain continues to fall this week.

With more rain in the forecast, officials are warning that the Eel and Van Duzen rivers are expected to crest their banks as low-lying areas of the county flood on Tuesday.

This weekend’s storm, which dumped between 4 and 5 inches over the last 72 hours, left a Fortuna woman stranded with her two dogs this morning as the Eel River rose around her. Ultimately a Mercer Fraser Co. construction crew used a front loading tractor to cross the 4-to-5 foot deep flooded area and carry the woman and her canine companions to safety at about 8 a.m.

“She probably could have walked across,” said Fortuna Volunteer Fire Chief Lon Winburn, whose agency assisted with the rescue. “But it's a good thing she called us just in case. There was no current because it was just back water.”

The weekend's rainfall left multiple rivers and some roads flooded, and the area is expected to receive another 3 to 5 inches of precipitation this week.

National Weather Service meteorologist Brad Charboneau said the two rivers with the largest flood danger are the Eel and the Van Duzen. Additionally, about 10 roads are currently closed due to flooding, with more expected as the rain continues to fall.

“People should be very aware that there is a high amount of water on the roads,” Charboneau said.

The Eel River is expected to reach about 20 feet by tomorrow afternoon and, by evening, the river is expected to pass flood stage and increase to 23.6 feet. The Van Duzen River is ex-pected to reach 18 feet, a foot above its flood stage.

According to the National Weather Service, “record river levels are expected with disastrous flooding throughout the Eel Delta. Most roads will be impassable including (State Route) 211 to Ferndale, and access will be severely restricted. All persons should take action to protect life and property.”

Charboneau said that between the rainfall and tomorrow’s high tide, some low-lying areas of Humboldt — like the Arcata bottoms and King Salmon — will see some flooding from both rain and tides.

Humboldt Bay Fire Battallion Chief Chris Jelianek said there have been no serious accidents or mudslides from the recent rainfall, but he says tomorrow may be a different story as more flood-ing is expected.

“We have been pretty lucky so far,” Jelianek said.

We are expected to gather another 2 to 3 inches tomorrow. The rain is supposed to slow down Wednesday before picking up again later in the week.

CalTrans spokesperson Myles Cochrane said there was a flood on State Route 254 through the Avenue of the Giants and the road is closed but expected to reopen to controlled traffic at around 5 p.m. today.

“Its best that people check their route with CalTrans before traveling,” Cochrane said.

Roads currently closed from flooding:
Redwood Drive at bluffs
Coffee Creek
Dillon Road between Riverside and Goble Lane
Goble Lane between Dillon and Fulmor
Goble Lane between Fulmor and Sage
Goble Lane between Sage and State Route 211
Fulmor Road past Goble Lane
Nissen Road
Camp Weott
Meridian Road
Port Kenyon Road


  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , , , , ,

UPDATE: Crab Strike Over

Posted By on Mon, Jan 9, 2017 at 8:35 AM

dsc_0032.jpg

UPDATE:

Ken Bates, Vice President of the Humboldt Fishermen's Marketing Association, reports that as of 4 p.m. on Jan. 6, Oregon fishermen and processors negotiated a price for Dungeness crabs at $2.875 a pound, an even split of the $2.75 processors offered, and the original price of $3.00 paid since Nov. 15, 2016.

In his press release, Bates added "Pacific Seafood Group ... could find that it might take a significant amount of time to regain the status lost in the fishing community by their actions to lower the crab price. Only time will tell."

District 7 boats are waiting out the weekend's storm to untie, according to Bates.

Previously:

As crab boats remain tied to docks from Alaska to Mexico, fishermen are feeling the pinch of a delayed season. West Coast crabbers have gone on strike in solidarity after Pacific Seafoods, one of the largest buyers of seafood in the region, dropped its per-pound buying price from $3 to $2.75 for Humboldt County fishermen just as District 7 boats were set to begin the season.

Brandt Brockschmidt-Apiki, pictured above, recently moved to California after working in Alaska fisheries for eight years. He took to the corner of Fourth and F streets this afternoon to protest the price cuts, saying they affect not just fishermen, but small businesses such as canneries and dive boats.

"Crab fishermen have had to put up with a lot," said Brockschmidt-Apiki, referring to last year's aborted season due to a domoic acid scare. "There's a lot of anticipation that's built up. Despite what's arisen, the unity is important."

Currently the only boats fishing on the West Coast belong to tribal groups, but at least one of those groups has joined the strike, according to a press release from the Humboldt Fishermen's Marketing Association. Reached for comment this morning, HFMA spokesperson Ken Bates confirmed the Quinault Indian Nation has joined in solidarity with West Coast fishermen. Negotiations were ongoing in Oregon this morning in an attempt to break the stalemate.

Brockschmidt-Apiki said reception to his one-man protest has been very warm and that he has counted 250 honks and an occasional "Hell Yeah!" from his corner since he posted up around noon.

"We [fishermen] tend to be more independent...this is something that has broken that trend," he said, referring to the strike.

dsc_0031.jpg

From the Humboldt Fishermen's Marketing Association:

January 4, 2017
Press Release from Humboldt Fishermen's Marketing Association

First Nation Fishermen Join West Coast Crab Strike

First Nation tribal fishermen from Washington State have joined the West Coast crab fleet “tie-up” for the re-instatement of the $3.00 per pound price for fresh Dungeness crabs. West Coast crab fishermen had been receiving $3.00 per pound from all West Coast fish buyers, since November 15, 2016. On Monday, December 26, 2016,one large west coast fishing industry processor instructed its subsidiary in Eureka, California to reduce the price paid to fishermen in California’s District 7, just as those fishermen were ready to go to work.

What was perceived by fishermen and other fish buyers as an attempt to cause a cascade of lower crab prices coast wide, has instead caused the largest tie-up of fishermen in the history of the west coast Dungeness crab fishery. Crab fishermen, up and down the coast, have held port meetings each day and are resolved to stay tied up until the buyer that created this mess, realizes their mistake, and pays the original $3.00 price.

  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , ,

Sunday, January 8, 2017

HumBug: Great Beginnings

Posted By on Sun, Jan 8, 2017 at 5:13 PM

Side view of the blister beetle. - ANTHONY WESTKAMPER
  • Anthony Westkamper
  • Side view of the blister beetle.

A great way to start the New Year! Astronomically, meterologically and biologically, winter solstice marks the end/beginning of our annual cycle. My year is starting off most auspiciously. About 1 a.m. on December 21st I counted eight glow work rms in the little grove, a record for the year.
Variegated Meadowhawk on a rock. - ANTHONY WESTKAMPER
  • Anthony Westkamper
  • Variegated Meadowhawk on a rock.
The day started sunny and bright so I took a walk along the Van Duzen River and counted a dozen variegated meadowhawks, the little dragonflies I have reported overwintering every year for the last five in my area. This was unheard of before I started reporting it, so I guess it's my claim to fame, and this is a record number for me sighting them in this area.
Variegated Meadowhawk on alder leaf. - ANTHONY WESTKAMPER
  • Anthony Westkamper
  • Variegated Meadowhawk on alder leaf.
A couple of large Caddisfly larvae were making tracks in the mud along the river margin.
Caddisfly larva making tracks. - ANTHONY WESTKAMPER
  • Anthony Westkamper
  • Caddisfly larva making tracks.
Caddisfly larva dragging its cylindrical "house" with it.  Kind of like a hermit crab. - ANTHONY WESTKAMPER
  • Anthony Westkamper
  • Caddisfly larva dragging its cylindrical "house" with it. Kind of like a hermit crab.

Finally, getting ready to go to a Solstice Party I noted a large black beetle on the garage floor. I have seen one of these in the same place every year for as long as I can remember. I have no idea why. I knew it was an “oil beetle” of the genus Meloe, family Meloidae, or blister beetles. So I took extra care collecting it to photograph later. Like their infamous relation the Spanish fly, their bodies contain the blistering agent cantharidin and can be seriously toxic to cattle who ingest them. This species has tiny useless wings which do not cover it's distended looking abdomen. Its larvae have a sort of parasitic relationship with bees.
Blister beetle on a centimeter/millimeter grid. - ANTHONY WESTKAMPER
  • Anthony Westkamper
  • Blister beetle on a centimeter/millimeter grid.
So hooray, the omens are good, we can look forward to to seeing interesting insects in record numbers in 2017! Don't everybody cheer at once.


  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , ,

Duck!

Posted By on Sun, Jan 8, 2017 at 11:21 AM

ROB FOWLER
  • Rob Fowler
Humboldt County's latest visiting celebrity has a red head, greyish back and pale saddle on its bill. Birders from across the country have been visiting to snap pictures of the common pochard, first spotted Dec. 20 in Freshwater Lagoon, near Orick.

The pochard, which is native to Europe and Asia, rarely makes its way to our continent. This is only the fourth time one has been spotted in the lower 48 states, according to local birder and tour leader Rob Fowler.

"All these sightings have occurred in California, the last one was in 1992 or 1993," said Fowler, referring to a spotting of the pochard in San Bernadino County, where birders saw a member of the species return over several winters. Very few people actually saw and recorded the duck at that time, but this pochard appears settled into its visit, mixing and mingling with other species at the lagoon, to the delight of birders who have flown in from as far away as Boston and Chicago.

Fowler calls it a "pretty good deal," adding that it doesn't appear as though the extra attention is disturbing the common pochard, which can be seen from the Old State Highway.

"There has been some concern expressed about hunters potentially taking the bird," said Fowler, echoing the fears of some birders voiced on social media. "Either accidentally or potentially hunters might come up specifically looking for the bird. Hunting is only allowed on the east side of the lagoon so I don’t really think it would be shot there, with the amount of other ducks it’s hanging out with."

Fowler said he and his clients have enjoyed looking for the bird, which is in Humboldt County for the first time.

"It’s kind of funny how these chases go sometimes," he said. "Seeing something that had to fly across the whole Pacific to get here. It’s always exciting to share these sightings with people."


  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , , ,

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Huffman to Skip Trump's Inauguration

Posted By on Sat, Jan 7, 2017 at 3:34 PM

Huffman
  • Huffman
The Huff has decided to sit this one out.

North Coast Congressman Jared Huffman announced on his Facebook page this afternoon that after much consideration, he’s going to break with precedent and spend inauguration day in his district volunteering.

“Ordinarily, on Inauguration Day, I would take my place above the west steps of the Capitol and join colleagues and dignitaries in honoring a great and solemn American tradition: the peaceful transfer of power which must always transcend partisan differences,” Huffman wrote. “However, there is nothing ordinary about this inauguration or the man that will be sworn-in as our next president. I do accept the election results and support the peaceful transfer of power, but it is abundantly clear to me that with Donald Trump as our president, the United States is entering a dark and very dangerous political chapter. … I will not sit passively and politely applaud as it begins."

Instead, Huffman has decided to spend Jan. 20 in his Second Congressional District doing yet-to-be specified “positive things,” including some volunteer efforts that constituents can join him in.

Huffman's decision has thus far proved popular with his constituents. Within a couple of hours, the post had garnered more than 160 comments, almost all of which were positive and supportive. Stay tuned to Huffman’s Facebook page to get more details as they’re announced and check out his full post copied below.

The full post from Huffman’s Facebook page:

I have struggled with the issue of whether to attend the Presidential Inauguration on January 20th and here is my decision.
Ordinarily, on Inauguration Day I would take my place above the west steps of the Capitol and join colleagues and dignitaries in honoring a great and solemn American tradition: the peaceful transfer of power which must always transcend partisan differences.
Ordinarily, I would do that without hesitation for any President, regardless of their politics or personality, as a show of respect for the institution and the will of the voters — and as a gesture of goodwill to foster reconciliation and collaboration as we put the election behind us and prepare to work with the new administration.
However, there is nothing ordinary about this inauguration or the man that will be sworn-in as our next President. I do accept the election results and support the peaceful transfer of power, but it is abundantly clear to me that with Donald Trump as our President, the United States is entering a dark and very dangerous political chapter. I will do everything I can to limit the damage and the duration of this chapter, and I believe we can get through it. But I will not sit passively and politely applaud as it begins.
As much as we all hope for the best, we should be clear-eyed about the warning signs of exactly who Donald Trump is and what he will attempt to do as our President. We know, or at least should know, what is coming. The question is, what to do about it?
I believe the antidote to Donald Trump is kindness, thoughtfulness, tolerance and inclusion — and the way to defeat his dark political agenda is not to sit around complaining and criticizing; it is through active citizenship, principled resistance and positive counteraction.
Toward that end, I'll be spending Inauguration Day here in my district doing positive things. I invite you to join me. I will announce my specific plans and agenda in a few days, including some volunteer activities that you can participate in if you wish. Stay tuned for the details, and thanks for reading all the way to the end of this long Facebook post!


  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , ,

Recent Comments

socialize

Facebook | Twitter

© 2017 The North Coast Journal Weekly

Website powered by Foundation

humboldt