Thirty-Five Years Ago
Jerry Ford and Ronald Reagan use them. So does the Chicano Federation. As a matter of fact, almost no political happening would be official without them.
Security guards are the new symbols of the American political presence. They’ve replaced balloons, bunting, and beer as traditional indicators of the good-old-fashioned, all-American political rally.
— “MARSHALLING THE TROOPS,” Ruth G. Peyton, July 15, 1976
Thirty Years Ago
Lakeside itself has always had a reputation for being notoriously racist. Populated largely by transplants from the traditionally conservative South and Midwest, the town has been the scene of considerable Ku Klux Klan activity over the past few decades. As recently as the early and middle 1970s, it was possible to see someone wearing a Klan T-shirt, parading down Main Street or browsing through the village department store. Lakeside was — and in many cases still is — a place where Archie Bunker would have thrived.
— “DON’T BUST THAT BOTTLE ON MY ACCOUNT,” Thomas K. Arnold, July 16, 1981
Twenty-Five Years Ago
Let me tell you what I am, for I have no name, I am of a race as old and strong and constant as the sun. I am ethereal, and I am of the earth. I am wood and sand and color melding into flesh and melting into air. I am a Yellow Woman in a changing vision of Heaven and Hell.
In this world, I am the image of a dream, the dream of a mind questioning the nature of an image, the image of a mind questioning its nature. I have no beginning, no middle, and no end. I am not a story, but I will make myself a story so you understand.
— “MOON’S Installation,” C.H. Elster, July 17, 1986
Twenty Years Ago
Gina, your June 27 critique of the recent Jimmy Buffett concert was quite a brainful of manure. I hope for your sake the Reader doesn’t request you to do a piece on the plight of the homeless, lingering effects of the Alaskan oil spill, or the enormity of our current national debt. The deep thought and depressing conclusions might put you in a straightjacket. At least we found out who really started the war with Iraq. Jimmy Buffett.
— LETTERS: “GINA: RAPE VICTIM OR BAD LAY?” Jim “Parrothead” Jollett, July 18, 1991
Fifteen Years Ago
“I began looking at the whole history of noisemaking at the same time I began looking at the history of what it means to be quiet. You can’t do one without the other,” says Hillel Swartz, a history professor at San Diego State.
“The kinds of instruments musicians use have been made to make louder sounds because they’ve been working in longer and larger auditoriums which have worse and worse acoustics.... It leads some people in every generation to say that what the new generation produces is noise.”
— “NOISE WARS,” Allan Peterson, July 18, 1996
Ten Years Ago
It’s a lot more upper class. You see a lot of Susie Soccer Moms driving their huge cars. It was a total culture shock for me to come up here from National City. Now I’m used to it...as long as I stay in the real world and leave all the bubble people alone.
Cheryl Nezworth, La Costa/San Marcos
— OFF THE CUFF: “WHAT DEFINES NORTH COUNTY?” July 12, 2001
Five Years Ago
I moved to San Quentin Village six months before I experienced what it’s like to live down the street from the only Death Row in the state of California, where they were to execute Donald Beardslee, a brain-damaged man who committed a murder 25 years ago. Justice is not swift here. My neighbor...told me what to expect. “You’ll hear singing, mostly from the nuns who are here to protest every execution.... Then, after it’s over, you’ll hear more singing as people march slowly back to their cars. They’ll be holding candles. If you sleep in the back of the house, you won’t hear anything.”
— BLOG WORLD: “DOWN THE STREET FROM THE DEATH HOUSE,” Jeff Smith, July 13, 2006