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Center Column Archives
Valerie Leveroni Corral writes:
"10 years ago at the break of dawn, awakened by the stomp of heavy booted agents, WAMM was raided by 30 DEA agents. Mike and I were taken into custody; chainsaw wielding agents cut the entire garden down, WAMM members blocked the gate, locking agents behind, and WAMM members and supporters bargaining for our release. What followed changed the course of medical marijuana, circumventing the government’s strategy to eliminate patient service organizations, legal under California state law. Santa Cruz City and County enjoined WAMM members in a lawsuit that resulted in a settlement, allowing WAMM to continue our service as the only collective sanctioned by the federal government."
Six months ago, local Occupy movements arrived at one of Monsanto corporation's Davis facilities at 6 a.m. Monsanto sent a message to their plant's workers to not come into work. The protest educated the public and initiated a conversation as a general assembly brainstormed solutions to Monsanto's corrupt ties with the government, unethical business practices, destruction of the environment, as well as the production of unhealthy food. Local activist groups plan to shutdown the Davis Monsanto plant once again on Monday, September 17th
John E. Colby reports:
"On July 30, the Homeless Services Center (HSC) in Santa Cruz threw Megan Andrea Morgan — a severely disabled woman who suffers from anemia and other disabilities which cause her severe fatigue and exhaustion — onto the street, denying her access to the HSC campus where she was receiving shelter at the Paul Lee Loft. Ms. Morgan has trouble standing without her walker — she is five feet one inch tall.
On Friday, August 24th, Gary Johnson was ordered by Judge John Gallagher to report to the Santa Cruz County Jail at 3 p.m. The jail refused to accept Johnson, ordering him to return on Monday at 8 a.m. Johnson was frustrated with this and returned to the Santa Cruz Courthouse. Upon entering the Courthouse, Johnson was immediately arrested by a sheriff's deputy.
Brent Adams writes:
"The City of Santa Cruz has been using the Santa Cruz Police Department and the City Parks Department to attack homeless camps. We are in the 7th week of this campaign that has seen more than 300 citations given, more than 100 camps destroyed, personal belongings trashed, and more than 150 arrests. While the Homeless Services Center has closed the Paul Lee Loft Shelter, the City has offered no other solutions to people who are survival camping in the woods, river levee, and downtown."
On August 24, supporters of GMO-Free Santa Cruz and Proposition 37 on the California ballot, marched and sang along Pacific Avenue to raise awareness about the proposition, and encourage people to vote in favor of it. Throughout the United States, people currently eat genetically engineered food, but they generally are not aware of it. The California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act, Prop 37 on the November ballot, would simply require food sold in retail outlets in California, such as grocery stores, to be labeled if it is produced with genetic engineering.
Joshua Hart reports:
"If the California Coastal Commission’s August 10 decision is any indication, no endangered species, viewshed, or habitat is safe from a Distributed Antenna System (DAS) 4G cell tower popping up right next door. It’s open season, as smart phone addictions drive a kind of selective blindness toward wireless damage to life itself. Those groups who are meant to protect remaining wilderness areas have grown silent, awkward, in denial. We cannot count on the traditional defenders of nature to protect us from the threats of the 21st century."