Author Archives: Guest contributor

Opinionator

Op-ed: The Berkeley balcony tragedy and the American legal system

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In recent days, much has been written about the tragic Berkeley balcony collapse and its victims – mostly Irish students visiting the United States on the U.S. government’s J-1 nonimmigrant visa. More than 150,000 Irish students have used the program for J-1 visas to visit the United States in the past 50 years, including 8,000 last summer, many of finding work in the San Francisco Bay area at retail shops, restaurants and tourist attractions, such as Fisherman’s Wharf.

Our hearts … Continue reading »

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From Rotten City folk: Branch Line bar in Emeryville

Branch Line: opening in July  on Hollis Street in Emeryville. Photo: Branch Line
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By Rob Arias / The E’Ville Eye

Jonas Bernstein is a bit of an Emeryville historian. He should be — he’s been doing business here for 17 years. Like any good business person, he pays attention to what’s going on around him and tries to stay ahead of the curve. His second business in Emeryville took what some would construe as a derogatory reference toward Emeryville, but he decided to own it.

“I took a bit of a gamble naming a pizza place ‘Rotten City’,” said Bernstein, referencing the famous Chief Justice Earl Warren quote. [Originally established as a ‘pleasure town,’ Emeryville was described by Warren” in 1927 as “the rottenest city on the Pacific Coast.”] “It ended up working out OK though,” added Bernstein.

Read more about eating and drinking in Emeryville on Nosh

Rotten City, at 6613 Hollis St., has a loyal following, and pies like its Porchetta (Fresh Mozzarella, Ricotta, Parmigiano, Pork Belly Porchetta and Salsa Verde) have helped put it on the map in a crowded field of competitors. Pizza has, and always will be, popular, but there are still peaks and valleys as burgers moved into the spotlight, followed by fried chicken sandwiches … and who knows what’s next? … Continue reading »

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Opinionator

Op-ed: Youth on the street, Berkeley anti-homeless laws, and the Supreme Court

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On Friday, June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court announced that LGBT couples have the right to marry in all 50 states. Households all over the nation either celebrated, stiffened, or wondered what it meant to their community and to history.

In the Bay Area, the Gay Pride celebrations have been an historical way to honor the nation’s deepening acceptance of lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, and transgender (LGBT) community members. That acceptance is strengthening at a pace once considered impossible. And across the nation in … Continue reading »

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Opinionator

Op-ed: A student responds to the AMPS yearbook incident

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I am responding to the recent hateful comment in the Berkeley High School yearbook directed at the Academy of Medicine and Public Service (AMPS) small school.

My overall reaction was pure disgust.

Someone on the yearbook committee took the time out of their day to perpetuate racial discrimination against our small school. This, after a long year of high emotions from the recent attention to the many killings and injustices done to people of color and the weight of discrimination … Continue reading »

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Op-ed: Loss of Christine Daniel reflects serious and growing problem within Berkeley government

City Manager Christine Daniel, leaving for the deputy position in Oakland. Photo: Emilie Raguso
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Christine Daniel has only been city manager for three years, but in that short amount of time her work addressing Berkeley’s unfunded pension liabilities has been impressive, argue the board members of the North East Berkeley Association in an Opinionator piece published on Berkeleyside.

“Ms. Daniel did a superb job in outlining the City’s vast unfunded liabilities over time and in creating budgets which more clearly addressed these liabilities. Under her leadership, we have seen great improvements in the way plans and projects for parks, streets, and other services are conceptualized, presented and budgeted,” the five board members write. … Continue reading »

Op-ed: City manager’s departure is big blow to Berkeley

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The North East Berkeley Association (NEBA) recently convened a board meeting for the express purpose of discussing the sudden resignation of the City Manager Christine Daniel.

We believe the loss to the city of Ms. Daniel reflects a very serious and growing problem within our city government.

Although we did not always agree with Ms. Daniel on many policy decisions, we appreciated her clarity, brevity, breadth of knowledge, and amazing ability to stay on top of almost all city … Continue reading »

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Sponsored post

Hot Property: 115 Parkside Drive, Berkeley

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This charming Dutch Colonial home, with its gracious public rooms and wonderful kitchen/family room, was orginally built in 1926.

It is located on the coveted Parkside Drive in the beautiful Claremont neighborhood, close to Round Park, Claremont Spa tennis and swimming, Star Grocery, BART and all the goodies that the Elmwood shopping district has to offer.

Scroll through a photo slideshow of the home, below, to take a tour: … Continue reading »

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Opinionator

Op-ed: For college athletes, is graduation a celebration or a reality check?

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Most people see graduation as a time to celebrate, a time for one to bask in one’s accomplishments. But for many college athletes, graduation represents a change in reality, a shift in their paradigm. For most of their lives collegiate spend their time indulged in their respective sports. These athletes have let sports direct and guide them towards every major life decision, and for the many who don’t get the opportunity to go pro, they now have to answer the age old … Continue reading »

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Opinionator

Op-ed: Religious leaders support effective, compassionate services, housing, not criminalization of homeless people

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To All Those Concerned: As Berkeley and Bay Area clergy and religious leaders of diverse faith traditions, we stand lovingly and firmly united in opposition to new proposed 2015 laws criminalizing homeless people. As we describe in this letter, we do so through our shared, deeply held religious convictions calling us to compassion, justice, and stewardship of resources.

The new homeless laws violate our deep conviction to express compassion for all living beings. We share a deep commitment to seeing … Continue reading »

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Op-ed: Berkeley Unified Superintendent responds to story on Berkeley Technology Academy

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Last Friday, I stood in line to congratulate our graduating students at the Greek Theatre, including students from our continuation high school, Berkeley Technology Academy (BTA). As I watched them walk confidently on and off the stage, I reflected on the article published on Berkeleyside (June 3, 2015), and felt it was important to share my view of our students and staff at BTA.

Berkeley Technology Academy is an alternative high school comprised of students who have not … Continue reading »

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Opinionator

Op-ed: Living beyond the tragedy at Library Gardens

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It is not every morning that one wakes up to hear on the radio that five people were killed in the building you live in. But that is what happened after I woke up on June 16 and heard the report on KCBS that a party on the fourth floor of the Library Gardens Apartments in downtown Berkeley ended when five people died and seven were injured after a balcony they were on collapsed.

While I am traumatized by this tragedy … Continue reading »

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Remembering David Littlejohn, critic and UC Berkeley journalism professor

David Littlejohn. Photo: courtesy of the family
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David Littlejohn, a popular and prolific arts critic, author, former public television host, and a professor emeritus of journalism at the University of California, Berkeley, died peacefully, June 4, at his home in Kensington, California after a long physical decline. He was 78. 

Throughout his career, he wrote a sweeping array of books, novels, and essays, but regarded himself primarily as a critic and teacher.

He taught undergraduate and graduate courses at UC Berkeley from 1963-1998, … Continue reading »

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Obituaries

Remembering Mary Lou DuBois, for whom Berkeley was the center of the world

Mary Lou DuBois
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Mary Lou DuBois passed away on March 15.

She was born in Brooklyn in 1927, while her father was in divinity school at Columbia. Her parents met while students at the University of Illinois, and they had moved back to the Chicago area by 1929, where her sister, Elizabeth, was born.

When she was about six, her family moved to Southern Arizona, where three years later her brother, Daniel, was born. They lived in and about … Continue reading »

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