Anger at the statue of former Palm Springs mayor Frank Bogert

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Hello and welcome to Essential California bulletin. It is Wednesday 25 August. I am Justin Ray.

In Palm Springs, there is a disagreement over a statue. No, I’m not talking about that of Marilyn monroe; I’m talking about the resemblance of the former mayor Frank Bogert in bronze in front of the town hall (photo below).

This year, the City’s Human Rights Commission advised may the statue be removed. A separate Change.org petition for 2020 has 2,887 signatures. But the movement sparked the formation of a new group called “Friends of Frank Bogert“To defend the legacy of the former mayor and respond to” a false, defamatory and openly political attack against Bogert “.

So why do people want to get rid of the statue? Well, mainly because of a terrible moment in Palm Springs history.

First, we need to take a step back. Blacks and Latinos have started to seriously move to Palm Springs during World War II, attracted by the prospect of working on neighboring farms and defense factories. Most settled in an area called Section 14, a square mile of desert in the heart of the city owned by the Cahuilla Agua Caliente band of Indians.

The meager wages and lack of employment opportunities meant that the population was impoverished. “The workers and their families rented out small plots and built huts, wood-frame houses, cinder-block houses,” the Times reported. City officials believed that if Palm Springs were ever to attract tourists, this area would have to change.

So what happened? City pulled people out of their homes to facilitate business development. Many of those evicted were not given notice before their homes were set on fire or demolished. Personal effects were stolen. Frank Bogert – the mayor at the time – was a big supporter of the effort.

“I was scared to death that someone from Life magazine would come and see the poverty, the cardboard houses, and make a story about the poor and the horrible conditions of Palm Springs just half a mile from the Desert Inn, our high rise property. class ”, Bogert told the Times in 2001.

A bronze statue of former Palm Springs Mayor Frank Bogert outside City Hall.

(City of Palm Springs)

The city-funded shave of the house led to an investigation by the state attorney general’s office. A 1968 report compared the city’s actions to a holocaust and said it was a “classic study with civic disregard for the rights and feelings of minority citizens.” But the office did not find that the city had broken the laws. Bogert has denied the report’s claims.

This is why some want the monument to be removed. The statue, erected on March 21, 1990, is “widely seen as an offensive and painful public reminder of a legacy of urban renewal that has banished the vast majority of people of color from city limits, and the current realities of systemic racism. born of his leadership of mayor from 1958 to 1966 ”, indicates the beginning of a proposed resolution by the Commission on Human Rights. He published an exhaustive list report detailing the displacement and its effects on residents.

In a 85-page rebuttal to the HRC report, the Friends of Frank Bogert challenged the commission’s findings and argued that they were politically motivated. Bogert “has worked tirelessly to minimize the effects of Section 14 evictions and to seek low-cost housing for its residents,” Friends of Frank Bogert wrote.

The debate over the statue is one of the many disagreements on monuments that have taken place in California in recent years. The Human Rights Commission resolution is expected to be presented to Palm Springs City Council on September 29, according to the Desert Sun.

To learn more about Palm Springs and its history with the breed, I highly recommend this 2001 play that begins with a “senior farce gone bad”.

And now, here is what is happening across California.

Note: Some of the sites we link to may limit the number of stories you can access without subscribing.

Subscriber Exclusive: A toxic stew of anti-Asian racism, anti-vaccine vitriol shakes Orange County. The people of Little Saigon are anxious and angry after the chairman of the supervisory board, Andrew Do, was called a “communist parasite” and told to “return to Vietnam”. Between anti-containment rallies, crackdown on mask warrants, and a restaurant for the unvaccinated, Orange County has also taken center stage as a node of aggressive COVID denial – even though protesters are one small minority of residents. Los Angeles Times

THE STORIES

Los Angeles Fire Department captain tackles city immunization requirements, sparking internal investigation. Captain Cristian Granucci, a 31-year veteran of the department, delivered a harsh criticism of the city’s new COVID-19 vaccination requirement in a video posted to YouTube. It was a rare public explosion from a member of the fire department. The ordinance awaits the signature of Mayor Eric Garcetti. The fire department said in a statement that the case had been referred to its professional standards division for investigation, which could lead to disciplinary action. Los Angeles Times

An LA Fire Department badge is displayed

Captain Cristian Granucci recorded a video of himself criticizing the city’s new vaccination requirement against COVID-19.

(Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times)

Our daily news podcast

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POLICY AND GOVERNMENT

California Privacy Protection Agency aims to treat data privacy. I used to link to articles, but this is a podcast episode. I really enjoyed this conversation with Jennifer Urban, president of the California Privacy Protection Agency. Last year, California voters passed a proposal establishing the agency, which has just started. In the interview, Urban explains why a state needs such a body and what privacy issues it can deal with. KQED

The big donors who are helping Newsom fight the California recall also have a big wishlist in Sacramento. The campaign to recall Governor Gavin Newsom has turned into a money magnet – for Newsom. His anti-recall campaign made more money in his first five months – $ 54 million – than the $ 50.2 million his 2018 gubernatorial campaign raised over four years. Most of the money came from six- or seven-figure donations from longtime Democratic backers, including government and labor workers, as well as individuals and interest groups who stand to gain from it. a relationship with the Governor of California. Los Angeles Times

CRIME AND COURTS

Remains of exhumed serial killer victims. The Calaveras County Sheriff’s Office Cold Affairs team has unearthed the remains of several people killed decades ago by two serial killers in hopes of identifying them using updated DNA technology. The unidentified human remains are associated with murders linked to Charles Ng and Leonard Lake, which took place in Wilseyville, Calaveras County and other locations in California during the 1980s. Fresno Bee

Kristin Smart Hearing: Police used a prison informant to befriend Paul Flores and demand a confession. A retired detective from the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office said investigators placed an informant in the Santa Barbara County Jail to seek a confession from the man charged with the murder of Kristin Smart. This informant kept in touch with Flores after their release, even going on fishing trips and going to Las Vegas. It was not revealed if this informant was a civilian or an undercover police officer, or if anything was learned from the operation. Tribune of San Luis Obispo

HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENT

1,893 LA Unified students and staff tested positive for the coronavirus last week, a group reports. A local group calculated that 1,893 students and employees at the Los Angeles Unified School District tested positive for coronavirus infection during the first week of school, based on a new dashboard created at the help from district data. The case count, compiled by the Parents Supporting Teachers group, was based on adding individual figures for more than 1,400 district sites and was current through Sunday evening. School district officials did not dispute the number, but noted that the total would likely change as the processing of week one test results continued. Los Angeles Times

The Worst Fires in California History: Dixie, Camp and more. You may remember I did a newsletter detailing the worst fires in California. Well, The Times did it again … except with some cool graphics! Additionally, the new story details the most destructive fires in state history. Los Angeles Times

THE CULTURE OF CALIFORNIA

How the sports arenas became the illustration of the housing crisis in California. The state recently started tracking public land that could be turned into affordable housing. In its first year, the National Housing Agency cited two major sports arenas – Angel Stadium in Anaheim and Pechanga Arena in San Diego – for making behind-the-scenes development deals that deprived the public of affordable units. The agency is now eyeing Oakland Coliseum. Calm

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ALMANAC OF CALIFORNIA

Los Angeles: Enjoy the wine! 88. San Diego: 81. San Francisco: Go running! 66. San José: 76. Fresno: 95. Sacramento: 86.

AND FINALLY

today Californian memory is of Jim Cline:

As the only passenger, I flew from LAX to San Diego on the little Imperial Air on the evening of July 4, 1985 (“small” meant you and your luggage were weighed to meet the restrictions!). Departing at 9pm and following the coast to San Diego, I was treated to a continuous spectacle of spectacular July 4th fireworks just below the low-flying plane. One after another for 45 minutes, each coastal community lit up their skies in a vibrant, vibrant and colorful celebration. No other fireworks display I’ve seen compares to this!

If you have a memory or a story about the Golden State, share it with us. (Please limit your story to 100 words.)

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