There’s an “I” in San Clemente

“The leaders spoke in warped, vicious hatred that disregarded the truth almost completely, while the majority of the ‘common folks’ who agreed spoke out of ignorance warped by the ravings of their leaders”. -W. Eugene Smith.

The action of the movement residents of San Clemente are currently witnessing is positive. The empowerment of the constituency really is the motivation behind the composition of our constitution. The intentions fueling the energy behind the popular political positions we’ve faced these last six months have been innocent, powerful, yet directed. Directed and manipulated by the leaders of each of these seperate conspiratorial factions. There was a pact, an alliance born out of a desire to win. A need to win above all else. Above truth, above fair-play, above common-sense, above everything. Vicious charges? Maybe. A team of volunteers on one side of an issue scour the city and illegally remove the legally placed signs of the opposition. “Merely playing the game” is a response I’m given. Although that game could result in negative legal repercussions. Words disquised as informational material are strung together to emphasize perspective, instead of educate. Opinion is counted as fact, and defended. I don’t believe our founding fathers intended decisions to be made by one insulated, independent head supported by a recruited band of ignorants, or the mal-informed, but they most likely suspected something of the sort would occur. And it has. We are so busy with our busy lives that we don’t read the too far past the headline. And we’re so weak, that if all our friends have been converted, we follow along to remain part of the group. Regardless of how we feel on the issue, regardless of how it effects the community as a whole. That’s not true of everyone, but you know someone where that applies. So what do we do? Just give up like the Game 6 Lakers? No, we move on. As a community we will benefit from the participation and engagement of our citizenry in the operation and direction of our city, but it is a double-edged sword. If there is a passion to involve oneself in a cause, nurture the passion with knowledge. Don’t turn a blind eye or dismiss the ill behavior of those with authority in your group, because you are then an accessory. We can build a path together, where honest debate and respectful disagreement can actually enormously enhance our returns, or we can follow the herd right off the edge of the cliff. Questioning authority is not contemptuous. But taking action without understanding is.

“I” is for insolent

Aren’t safety, fairness and the pursuit of the ‘greater good’ the only reason to enact any law or ordinance? If Measure “I” (San Clemente) does not treat each of these Shorecliffs residents equally, then who does it serve? Being that California state law is based on precedent, this seemingly insignificant and isolated restriction does have a potential to inhibit some form of our freedom down the road. Shorecliffs Aerial ViewI understand how it got to the ballot, that is merely a result of overactive egos and lots of money in a small town. What I don’t understand is the myopic, self-serving attitude of those behind this debacle. Is it considerate to build a second-story that blocks a neighbors ocean-view? Absolutely not. Is it illegal? Absolutely not. Does removing the view lower your neighbors property value? Possibly. Is that potential loss mitigated by the upgrading of a neighborhood as a whole? Possibly. This mutant growth of “Me” generation ideology obviously feels that the whole world needs to be apprised of personal differences. Should we get in the middle of every fight between your kids as well? Measure “I” is a “Lose-Lose” proposition, regardless of the outcome. A “No” vote negatively impacts part of a neighborhood, sort of, meaning they still would have the freedom to build up to 25′. A “Yes” vote imposes a restriction on some of the houses in a neighborhood, but sets a precedent. Think about it people. And for those of you with 2-story homes and “Yes on I” signs in their yards, the “I” stands for insolent.