Berkeleyside’s Op-Ed Section

Op-ed: Don’t let developers buy Berkeley’s election

In Berkeley, it’s sometimes easy to feel like our local politics are immune to the kind of cronyism and monied influence that afflicts most localities. After all, we like to think of ourselves as a well-informed, progressive city. We opposed … Continue reading »

By Donald Goldmacher

Donald Goldmacher lives in Berkeley and is the co-director of 'Heist: Who Stole the American Dream?'

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Op-ed: Vote yes on U1 and no on Measure DD to fund affordable housing

The affordability crisis in rental housing is clear to everyone. Rising rents create hardship for tenants and result in unprecedented profits for large landlords. Taxing those windfall profits to provide affordable housing is the right thing to do. That’s why … Continue reading »

By Stephen Barton

Stephen Barton, Ph.D. is Co-Chair of the Yes on U1 campaign. Now retired, he served as the Berkeley Housing Director and as Deputy Director of the Rent Stabilization Program.

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Op-ed: Some insights into ranked choice voting in Berkeley

I recently read your coverage of Berkeley candidates for the Nov. 8 election. One city council candidate encouraged voters to only vote for her and not rank other candidates — this is a political tactic called “bullet voting” — … Continue reading »

By Pedro Hernandez

Pedro Hernandez is Deputy Director of Fairvote California, an electoral reform organization that focuses on fair systems of representation.

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Op-ed: A better way to address the housing crisis

After so much media coverage of the bizarre presidential race, I find it refreshing to finally start to hear more about local races, where an eclectic cast of characters contending for many local offices are discussing hugely important issues that … Continue reading »

By Christina Oatfield

Christina Oatfield lives in Berkeley and works as Policy Director at the Sustainable Economies Law Center.

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Op-ed: Equitable access to quality education has the power to transform society — Vote yes on Measure E1

Berkeley has long been recognized for its diversity and openness to differences, intellectual curiosity and civic engagement.

The values of this city resonate with us as a family. A city that believes and stands for social good and gathers around … Continue reading »

By Avi Khullar

Avi Khullar is a Berkeley resident and has a son who attends a Berkeley public school. The opinions expressed in this article are personal and not based on professional affiliations.

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Op-ed: Berkeley must change the way it provides shelter to the homeless

The people who run the center for providing Berkeley’s homeless services (the HUB) write on their website: “Since 1970, Berkeley Food and Housing Project has been a compassionate provider of homeless services.”

Forty-six years! The plight of Berkeley’s homeless is … Continue reading »

By JP Massar

JP Massar is a Berkeley resident and activist, one of who's interests is in making sure everyone has a home.

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Op-ed: Pension problem fairy tale

Berkeley has more than a half-billion dollar pension problem deficit which will increase substantially for decades to come. This appears to be an insurmountable problem. But it need not be. Consider:

The city has about 216 miles of roads and … Continue reading »

By Ted Edlin

Ted Edlin, who has lived in Berkeley for more than 50 years, was formerly president of the Council of Neighborhood Associations, vice-president of NEBA, chair of the Housing Advisory Commission, and a member of the Fire Commission, now known as the Disaster and Fire Safety Commission.

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Op-ed: Vote ‘yes’ on Measure T1, the $100M bond measure

No, infrastructure is not “sexy”, but it is critical to our quality of life. And Berkeley has not invested adequately in it for many years. We need to change that.

Enter Measure T1. T1 authorizes a $100 million bond to … Continue reading »

By Diz Swift

Diz Swift is vice-chair of the Berkeley Public Works Commission, and VP-Action for the League of Women Voters – Berkeley, Albany, Emeryville.

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Op-ed: It takes a special person to lead Berkeley and it’s Laurie Capitelli

I’ve been living in Berkeley since 1967, then as an entering freshman at the University of California. I attended Cal through the Oakland Induction Center protests, People’s Park, was tear gassed on my way to class, and was among the … Continue reading »

By David Salk

David Salk is the owner of Focal Point Opticians, president of the Elmwood Theater Foundation, and past president of the Elmwood Merchants Association.

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Op-ed: Why I’ve decided to vote for Laurie Capitelli

Open letter to my neighbors whom were unable to meet Laurie Capitelli at a house event we hosted:

Until last night, I was undecided. I had known nothing substantial about our two candidates. (This is really a two-horse race.) Two … Continue reading »

By Jonathan Jaffe

Jonathan Jaffe is a data security consultant and a privacy attorney who lives in the Elmwood.

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Op-ed: Berkeley needs a mayor who shows true leadership

Berkeley voters face a choice in the upcoming Mayoral race, but not the choice we’ve been led to believe. Contrary to much of the campaign rhetoric so far, this election is not a question of who is the most or … Continue reading »

By Eric Panzer

Eric Panzer has lived in Berkeley since coming to study Environmental Science and City Planning at Cal in 2003. Eric is an advocate for abundant housing, improved transit, greater sustainability, and good governance. All opinions stated here are his own.

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Op-ed: Laurie Capitelli? Progressive leadership?

— “I renege.” — Laurie Capitelli, May 6, 2014 Berkeley City Council meeting.

— Renege (verb): “to refuse to do something that you promised or agreed to do.” —Merriam-Webster online dictionary.

In campaign mailings Laurie Capitelli is bragging about being … Continue reading »

By Nicky Gonzalez Yuen

Long-time Berkeley resident Nicky Gonzalez Yuen was an active organizer for Berkeley’s minimum wage campaign, is a political science instructor at De Anza College, and has been an elected Trustee on the Peralta Community College Board since 2004.

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Op-ed: Why is the Berkeley City Council so right-wing?

You would think in a left-leaning city like Berkeley – a bastion of free speech and the home of one of the soda tax – that the City Council would be a pretty liberal group. So, it came as a … Continue reading »

By Keith Johnson

Keith Johnson is a resident of Berkeley and a professor of Linguistics at UC Berkeley

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