Saturday, September 22, 2018

Marin Voice: The name ‘Dixie’ is a throwback to the days of human suffering

Marin Voice: The name ‘Dixie’ is a throwback to the days of human suffering

September 21, 2018 at 10:00 am

The fight to strike the name “Dixie” from a Marin County school district is as old as the Republic and as young as the memory of those unmindful of the past. The arguments against the name change are straight out of the civil rights resistance playbook.

One of the arguments is that the people advocating change don’t live in the district. But of the 23 speakers at the last Dixie School District board meeting, 18 live in the district. Other longtime veterans who initiated the struggle still live in the county and were asked to participate. Similar “outside agitator” labels were leveled at Martin Luther King Jr. when he left Atlanta to go to Alabama. He answered them in his “Letter from the Birmingham Jail” — “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

Truth is no less true because of who says it or where they live. Some whites claim not to have witnessed racism in the district. To tell minorities what to be offended by, when to feel offended and under what circumstances is a refutable presumption. As Abraham Lincoln said, “Only he who wears the shoe knows how tightly it fits.”

Alums of Marin County high schools such as Tina Mitaine had to endure Slave Day in 1988 when white students came to school in black face. Others withstood Mexican Day, when wearing sombreros and bandoleros was thought funny. Sally Matsuishi, on the anniversary of Pearl Harbor, found “Jap” painted on her locker at a Marin County school. Her counselor excused the slur with another, explaining that it might have just meant she “was spoiled.”

In the past two years the painted “N” word greeted the newly arrived principal at Tamalpais High School. The same word was recently spray-painted at Redwood High with the name of a long-time counselor attached.

Tam High faced its own moment of truth in 1988 when it changed its mascot from the Indians to the Red-Tailed Hawks. San Rafael barbershop owner Tino Wilson told me recently he started the school as an “Indian,” finishing as a “Hawk.”

Researching history clearly shows nothing is new. The arguments then were against political correctness, the desire to maintain history and tradition. Basically, their view? Get over it. Dixie area residents may soon find themselves up Miller Creek without a paddle.

Think back to the resistance to Muhammad Ali changing his name from Cassius Clay. Or Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Roberto Clemente demanding to be called by his given name and not Bob, as the sportscasters insisted.

“Dixie” is an anachronistic throwback to an era of slavery, bondage and human suffering. By maintaining the name, we do a disservice to the district, the county and the children we seek to educate. It is disingenuous to maintain that Dixie is anything but synonymous with the Confederacy. That was acknowledged in the Dixie School Foundation’s application for landmark status.

See the full article HERE

Editor's Note: I do not know anyone who associates the name of the Dixie School District with the Confederacy but still I feel this issue should be discussed.  Unfortunately, the rhetoric has gotten very heated.  Let's listen to each other anyway and try to sort this out as neighbors.

Calpers, Pensions and the Managers Fiscal Report

Friday, September 21, 2018

CSD meeting on 9/11/2018 Full Video

Marinwood CSD approves to "Rent a Fire Chief" from San Rafael for $98,000

After lamenting how expensive the contract is with San Rafael, the Marinwood CSD board votes unanimously to approve a $98,000 contract that is already covered in our shared services agreement. Irv Schwartz wants to revisit this soon.  

Marinwood Fire Department spends 66% of all emergency calls responding to the City of San Rafael and we receive little in return.  In the past we were paid $300k annually.  In addition we have been paying a paramedic tax for SEVEN years to San Rafael and still do not have a paramedic on staff in Marinwood as promised. 

Clearly, neither the CSD board, or our staff is up to the task of negotiation.  We need to find a new approach to our fire service that does not exploit Marinwood taxpayers.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

CSD Maintenance Compound parking lot FAIL

The Marinwood CSD Maintenance Compound is designed only to store vehicles at night. During the day, vehicles will park in front of the facilty.  The dump truck, trailer, landscaping debris and bulk
materials will remain outside permantly as before.  Due to the "drive through" design and poor soils at the Eastern end of the building, vehicles will be forced to turn around in the meadow 300' to the east.

This is simply unacceptable. The unusual design is expensive and inefficient for material storage and vehicle movement. A conventional side access garage like the one below allows easy access to
vehicles, tools and equipment.  Unfortunately, the architect does not like garage doors for aesthetic reasons and is forcing his design on the workers and the people who object to the excessive size.

Side access garages allow easy access to vehicles and equipment. A narrow garage like this will not block the walking path.

We can build a Small Amphitheater in Marinwood Park

As everyone in Marinwood  knows, Marinwood Park is a popular place for picnics and music.   A small steel amphitheater like the ones below are inexpensive and very functional.  In addition to providing a small outdoor theater, the space can function as a shaded picnic area, drama stage and outdoor classroom.  It will provide an attractive focal point for the community at a very low cost.  Many manufacturers have stock designs, ready to ship starting around $7500.  

How the Marinwood CSD can Promote Civility and Improve the Quality of Life

Monday, September 17, 2018

The CSD Manager "Gaslights" the citizens of Marinwood



MICROAPARTMENTS MAKE LIVING in a big city semi-affordable, but tiny, featureless boxes can hardly be called homes. When Madrid-based graphic designer Yolanda Piladecided to renovate her cramped chambers, she turned to PKMN Architecture (pronounced Pac-Man) to transform the tiny footprint into a homey abode.
Instead of following the typical studio apartment floor plan and outfitting Pila's place with a galley kitchen, closet-sized bathroom, and a bedroom the size of a prison cell, PKMN developed a solution that allowed her to have several spacious rooms—just not all at once. They outfitted her ceiling with industrial tracks, often used to support the rolling bookshelves at libraries, and fabricated a series of storage units that double as walls. The bespoke boxes weigh nearly a ton each when fully loaded, but can be moved relatively easily.
Pila can create "rooms" by rolling these storage units into a variety of configurations and turn her space into a dressing room, sitting area, boudoir, or kitchen depending on the need. Sliding panels give her the ability to create a sense of privacy or to hide a sink full of dishes. The itinerant nature of the walls means each of these spaces can be larger, about 160 square feet, than if they were permanently defined.
"The project is about how to allow the coexistence of both configurations, private life and work place, without renouncing spacious pieces for each use," says PKMN Architecture co-founder and designer Carmelo Rodríguez.
Each plywood unit is packed with purpose-built furniture like a Murphy Bed, blackboard, and prep table, as well as 150 cubic feet of storage space for Pila to store her possessions. This solution makes economical use of the space in her home and unlike many ultramodern overhauls, most of the materials used to construct these cabinets are available at Home Depot.
Industrial plywood is typically used as a sturdy sub-flooring, but in the hands of PKMN's architects it's unique texture becomes a design feature. "We are also very fond of its appearance, the textures it introduces into the house when used on furniture and flooring," says Rodríguez. "In contrast to white finishing on walls."
In addition to the quirky rearrangeable space, Pila's home also features a large room that allows her to have more permanent furniture. The result is a live/work space that packs a wide variety of functionality into a fairly small footprint.
"The story is also about dealing with storage of personal belongings and how their organization and display is related to domestic experience," says Rodríguez.