Justin Powell 1 p.m., Dec. 13
My first thought has a lot to do with a conversation my wife and I had with a friend. We, as San Diegans, take way too little interest in what's happening in our city. This is not news to anyone outside San Diego, but the folks here really don't understand how much they should say and do when it comes to the things they care about. Just as an example, I had the honor of serving on a fan committee for the Red Sox, and Dr. Steinberg was the leader of that group. He had been involved with those groups twice before - once in Baltimore, and once here. His comment was "In Baltimore we needed a table for 20 and it was filled with strong opinions, but in San Diego, we could have had the meeting in a phone booth". I thought that showed general apathy with sports in this city, but I was wrong. There are lots of very strong fans for the sports teams here, but they just don't get excited about what's going on, and they don't spend time learning enough about the sports to make good comments. I think the same is true in the politics here. That's the only way you can explain Mike Aguirre a few years ago and Carl DeMaio now. Aguerre was very outspoken, but he was way off base most of the time. Now DeMaio is out there screaming about how much money some city workers make, while he's on the council that's cutting personnel causing the need for all the overtime that costs all that money. I really hope that San Diegans will begin paying attention to the causes of this budget being so high, and the people will actually begin taking action to change those problems.
Next on my list is something we see whenever my wife and I go to Disneyland, the Flag Retreat Ceremony. This is a beautiful example of all the things Americans did right in the small communities all over this country. The Disneyland Band marches down the street and encircles the flag pole at the beginning of Main Street U.S.A.. The Dapper Dans come out and sing a few patriotic songs. Then the color guard march out and stand at attention whle the announcer requests that any active or former members of the U.S. Military come to the flag as their branch's song is played. After all their songs are played, Ernie, a former Marine who is now the color guard captain salutes each member of the military and thanks them for their service. Then the entire crowd stands as the flag is lowered with military precision and folded. After a stirring group singing of God Bless America, the ceremony is over and the entire group march smartly out of sight to the parade gates of Main Street. This is a wonderful piece of patriotic Americana I hope lasts forever. If you agree with me, please write to Guest Services at Disneyland and let them know how wonderful this program is, because they may be trying to change this tradition, and we don't want that to happen.
My final thought has to do with atheletes, politicians, and others in the public eye who are caught in infedelities. I am tired of people saying "It's none of our business" when a president, basketball player, golfer, or anyone else is caught. Enough with the free pass, already. There is, in my mind, no excuse for being unfaithful to your wife. If you are having marital problems, get separated, and fool around , you have taken steps to make the situation clear. If you are married and sleep with a movie star (Kennedy), a secretary (Eisenhower & Clinton), a photographer (Edwards), a housekeeping person (Bryant), or every woman he's ever met (Woods), you are showing a lack of regard for your wife, yourself, your family, and your supporters. It's all of our business, because they are public figures, making their lives public. I can't support the people or the products they advertise after these character flaws are exposed.