Readers comments 10-9-20
Good for Democrats
I take exception to your news article, “Big turnout for Democratic Club meeting raises questions,” published October 2.
I have dedicated much of the last four years of my life volunteering my time to get out the vote for Democrats and I find Karen Rosenthal’s view that there was a problem with the size of the turnout and make-up of the specific types of Democrats in attendance quite disheartening.
In my opinion this is a blatant attempt to undermine the legitimacy of the endorsement results, and the fact that the COURIER chose to publish this story is disappointing.
When I joined the meeting, I saw something quite different from Ms. Rosenthal. I saw the familiar faces and names of many Claremont Democrats, including my daughter, with whom I have walked precincts, written letters, postcards, phone banked, registered new voters, and attended rallies and meetings.
I saw people who were excited to participate in the democratic process. I saw registered Democrats and club members in good standing, waiting patiently and politely through an hour of procedures to have their voices heard.
Speculation that the turnout was organized by Claremont Change was both specious and irrelevant. The further assertion that this event was like a “page out of the Mitch McConnell and Newt Gingrich playbook,” was an outrageous insult to Christine and her supporters.
It is not surprising that attendance was high. It’s an exciting election featuring compelling candidates. I joined a Zoom endorsement meeting for another regional Democratic Club two weeks ago and they too had a similarly larger than usual turnout. Good for Democrats. Good for democracy.
Kudos to ingenuity
I would like to acknowledge all the creativity currently being showcased in Claremont during these pandemic times. The Rotary’s event to promote businesses and raise funds for their nonprofit causes is exciting and fun.
The Claremont Chamber of Commerce’s Scarecrow Competition will be a friendly way for kids to enjoy Halloween, drive folks to the Village area, and promote light-hearted, neighborly, scarecrow building rivalries.
I was also impressed by the Claremont Museum of Art’s fantastic gala video and their (ongoing) online auction. Bravo to Claremont ingenuity!
What is caring?
This is a response to the signs sprouting around Claremont saying that wearing masks is about caring. It’s not. Caring would be wearing what truly works—a face shield. Caring would be not sneezing or coughing on other people. Caring would be not spreading fear.
Vote Salas for Citrus
I am supporting Joe Salas for the Citrus College Board of Trustees. Joe has a platform that is focused on helping the most underserved student populations at Citrus College. Joe just wants the students at Citrus College to do more than survive, he wants them to thrive. Joe’s focus on building cultural spaces at Citrus College is practiced in our own community.
The Claremont Colleges and Cal Poly Pomona have built and continue to fund cultural centers. For some reason, Citrus College has chosen to not listen to their own students who want centers that would be spaces where mentorships could occur and added student services that can take place that are culturally responsive.
Joe is arguing for a more robust dual enrollment with Claremont Unified School District, which would allow the young people in the community to graduate with a high school diploma and an associate’s degree. This would take two years off a student path towards a bachelor’s degree. The dual enrollment program would allow for students to get to the job market in a more efficient manner, lower student debt in half and allow for better workforce development allowing for a pathway for careers that can give our young people industry certification in a trade.
I have always known Joe to be a leader in speaking up for populations that are underserved and marginalized. He does this work daily being a special education and ethnic studies teacher in San Bernardino.
If you want a trustee whose singular focus will the improve retention and success rates at Citrus College for all students, then please join me in voting for Joe Salas.
Christine is the CEO we need
Claremont is in a budget crisis. We have to come to terms with that. And rather than list all the reasons why we ended up in this situation, I think we need to focus on solutions, especially considering the economic challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
We need a city council member with experience turning things around in a financial crisis. That’s Christine Margiotta.
Christine is the only candidate running for District 1 who is a seasoned executive. As a CEO, she has been responsible for balancing budgets, generating revenue, making payroll, negotiating contracts and delivering on objectives and deadlines. She’s filed for the Federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). She’s had to lay off employees. She’s made the difficult decisions a CEO has to make. And Christine has done this in both the private and public sectors, with experience overseeing county program budgets many times larger than our city’s entire operation.
Christine doesn’t shy away from responsibility or decision-making. She embraces that role. She never abstains from her obligations or duties. But what I admire most about Christine is that she’s brave.
In this highly sensitive political environment, word choice is weaponized, and fear mongering is all too often used as a political tool. Despite this, Christine is brave enough to reach out to those who challenge her worldview. I have seen her patiently listen to skeptical voters who spend half an hour insulting her. And yet somehow, by the end of the conversation, they find common ground. Sometimes the critic even thanks Christine for running!
Christine’s willingness to engage with those who disagree with her is a superpower our town needs right now.
This election cycle, we cannot allow partisan squabbles to drive our decision-making. We don’t have the leisure to let our city council election become some kind of high school popularity contest. We need a proven leader—with strong fiscal experience—who can find the best path forward, build consensus, negotiate favorable terms, and pass a responsible budget that will improve our collective futures.
We need Christine on our city council to help turn this ship around.
Calaycay for council
Sandy Baldonado and I are honorary co-chairs of Corey Calaycay’s campaign for re-election to the Claremont City Council. We are now residents of Pilgrim Place. Sandy has served as a Claremont council member and as mayor. I am past chair of the human services commission. Our experience with the needs of Claremont and our work with Corey lead us to support him and invite you to join us with your vote.
Please take a few moments to view his website at www.coreycalaycay.com and share his personal letter. What he does not say is that he is the child of a Filipino immigrant and has called Claremont home for 46 continuous years including 15 years of proven service on our city council.
Corey Calaycay will represent District 1 and all of Claremont with integrity¸ listening, transparency and fairness.
Reznik for council
It’s time for the Claremont City Council to make room for millennials. This is one of many reasons why I am enthusiastic about Ethan Reznik in District 1. He will bring a fresh perspective to a city council that historically has lacked young voices. And while focused on the future, he is the only candidate in the race who was born and raised in Claremont.
Ethan Reznik will bring thoughtfulness, earnestness, and empathy to city issues. Where was the city council six months ago when it came to passing a local mask ordinance? Seniors have been afraid to leave their homes; why didn’t the city council do anything? Ethan Reznik is committed to protecting and helping seniors, and to ensuring that Claremont is safe and accessible for everyone.
Having majored in political science, economics and urban environmental policy, Ethan recognizes that one of Claremont’s greatest assets is its walkability, and that this principle must be applied to the Village South development project to ensure that the Gold Line works for Claremont rather than dividing it.
Ethan is also thinking about Claremont’s relationships with its neighbors—Pomona, Montclair, Upland and La Verne—and how best to partner with them on vital community issues including affordable housing and homelessness. He understands the challenges that mental illness presents, both for those suffering from it as well as for society at large. He is dedicated to providing resources for the mentally ill and to removing any stigma attached to their illnesses.
Finally, Ethan Reznik is committed to social justice, civil rights, and inclusivity in all areas of city life, including policing.
I urge everyone in District 1 to give serious consideration to Ethan Reznik’s candidacy for council. It’s time for a new voice, a voice of reason, a voice we can trust.
Ceraso puts community first
I am writing to proudly support Michael Ceraso for city council District 5.
Mike is a man of the people, and definitely lives his slogan “Community First.” He will meet you at your apartment, in your front yard, or on the phone to find out what he can do to be the best representative for our district.
You get the impression that he genuinely wants to hear from everyone, wanting to build a community to craft solutions and a path forward that center those most marginalized, and involve all to participate in the decisions. He makes you feel like you have a place at the table.