Posted October 15, 2007 in News


Everybody still assumes Eastvale smells that way because of the cows, but that’s not fair because the dairies have been moving out. What we’ve been smelling lately is the reek of elitism. The scent is especially pungent today, carried in on a bunch of hot air from the south, where a Corona-Norco school district report includes an e-mail describing Eastvale’s population shift over the past five years, from a “stable and secure population” of dairy farmers to “tract home dwellers.” Lynne Murray, who oversees construction for the school district, denigrates the new residents with just about the strongest insult imaginable: “I would almost call this area ‘little L.A.’” Just in case anybody didn’t understand what “little L.A.” is code for, Murray explains that “many of the constituents in this particular area are Hispanic or black ethnicity.” Just in case anybody doesn’t get what “Hispanic or black ethnicity” is code for, Murray warns that new Eastvale residents have the potential to “influence and/or change the academic achievement and future success in a short period of time if not managed appropriately.” Exactly what “managed appropriately” is code for, well, we all ought to shudder to think. As far as academic achievement being negatively impacted by the replacement of dairy farms with tract-home dwellers . . . well, duh! Cows are smart! 


Truthfully, I’ve always kind of liked the aroma of dairy farms, which ignites the methane-y memories of my childhood—spent downwind of Cerritos, back when it was still called Dairy Valley, before all its sacred cows were trucked off to places like Eastvale . . . and local test scores went into the toilet.


In what appears to be another flagrant assault on the “right to bear arms” guaranteed by the Second Amendment, Thomas McKiernan is taken into custody, subjected to a mental evaluation, then jailed when dozens of rifles and one million rounds of ammunition are found in his Norco home, which was on fire. Oh, and he had also dug a tunnel from his garage to the back yard. McKiernan faces charges of possession of assault weapons, possession of illegal ammunition and possession of explosives, which 200-some years ago pretty much would have qualified him to be a Founding Father.


The war efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan seem to be failing, the American death toll is climbing and the poor treatment of the wounded is becoming a national scandal, but a couple of brothers from Hesperia—Shawn and Troy Nottingham—enlist together into the U.S. Army. Shawn, 20, leaves for basic training on March 7, but Troy is still a senior at Hesperia High and has to wait until graduation in June. They sound thrilled—and a little bit naïve—but in both respects, they don’t sound much different than many of the soldiers in our volunteer army. Basically, they’re betting their lives in a gamble for a better future. As is, the future doesn’t look especially bright to them—Shawn dreads job prospects that would leave him “stuck behind a computer for the rest of my life,” and Troy needs help paying for college. Even if it doesn’t pan out, the idea of making the ultimate sacrifice in service to country—even a country that offered them nothing more than a boring computer job and unaffordable college—seems more purposeful than the alternatives. “It’s my obligation to go defend my country,” Shawn tells the Hesperia Star. “The worst thing that can happen is that I’ll die.”


Another Saturday night, and it’s dead in Rialto

I got some money ‘cause I just got paid

But none of my buddies show up at Scores Sports Bar

Not since the police raid

It’s barely been 24 hours since a wave of cops and SWAT officers swooped into a Foothill Boulevard nightclub they had under surveillance for six months, surprising 300 people—twice legal capacity—many of whom quickly hid their handguns and bags of marijuana in the pockets of pool tables. According to the police, they’ve had to respond to nearly 1,000 complaints at the Scores Sports Bar during the past three years, including fights, drug sales and gang-related disturbances. Obviously, this place is going to be missed.


A week before her 50th birthday, Juanita Ann of Riverside starts—and finishes—her first marathon. Procrastinator!


Riverside County Sheriff Bob Doyle and San Bernardino County Sheriff Gary Penrod attend a meeting in Los Angeles, where Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani shares his gang- and crime-fighting expertise. If they’re listening, we’re in trouble. Giuliani was headed into history’s sunset as one of the worst-ever mayors in New York City history until Sept. 11, 2001, when a bunch of terrorists saved his reputation by crashing planes into the World Trade Center. It provided a great series of photo ops for a guy whose tenure had been characterized by inexhaustible self-promotion, rampant paranoia, petty jealousy—and the authorization of ruthless, rights-bending brutality and cruelty against minorities, the poor and sick, artists, people on welfare and victims of crime. Doyle and Penrod emerge from the meeting enthused, saying they’re going to tap into Giuliani’s expertise as a former mayor credited with helping bring down his city’s crime rate. We’re in trouble.



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