Our 2022 Campaign for San Diego City Council is Underway
As more of our neighbors are vaccinated and the threat of COVID-19 recedes, the challenges our neighborhoods faced prior to 2020 are still with us, and in some cases have worsened. It takes way too long to rebuild our broken streets and sidewalks. The rent for many is too high. Our beaches still become toxic soups during storms. That's why I'm running for the open San Diego City Council District 6 seat in 2022. I want to ensure San Diego "Builds Back Better" by safeguarding our environment, investing in our infrastructure, and protecting every one of our neighbors in Mira Mesa, Kearny Mesa, Clairemont, Sorrento Valley, Miramar, and Rancho Peñasquitos. Together, we can restore safe streets, healthy canyons, and vibrant neighborhoods. Join us!
CBS 8 Speaks with Tommy on Combating Anti-Asian Intimidation, Violence
Thanks to CBS 8 reporter LaMonica Peters for covering the increase in intimidation and violence against our elderly Asian neighbors, friends, and loved ones – part of a larger increase of incidents of intimidation directed against Asian Americans since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. In some cases, incidents may be going unreported, especially among our elderly neighbors. The virulently racist, destructive, and pejorative reaction by some Americans over the pandemic's origin have been deplorable, especially the outrageous remarks made by the former president that further fanned racist hate and willful misunderstanding. See Tommy's remarks here.
My Letter to the City Regarding Intimidation of AAPI Neighbors
As I wrote last month, I'm disgusted at the hatred and intimidation directed against our AAPI neighbors since the onset of the pandemic, and especially the spike in violence since the Jan. 6th insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. To that end, I sent a letter to the City of San Diego's Human Relations Commission to request that it pursue greater outreach to AAPI communities, neighborhoods, and related organizations throughout the city, schedule citywide hearings on the epidemic of anti-Asian hate and intimidation, and for police, fire, and other public safety services and first responders to be part of the dialogue to discuss potential cultural misunderstandings or language barriers that could discourage elderly AAPI neighbors from reporting a hate-related incident.
The Corrosive Cancer of Violence and Hate Against Our AAPI Neighbors
As San Diegans, we cherish our diverse, multicultural city and heritage, and we put a premium on safe, welcoming neighborhoods and communities. But I've grown increasingly concerned, and incensed, at the sharp increase in attacks and violence against our Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) neighbors and community members over the last several weeks. This monstrous trend has escalated from verbal assaults, to spitting and coughing, to punching, shoving, and hitting people from behind. An 84-year old man in San Francisco was killed when he was shoved to the sidewalk, and ABC 10 reported an elderly Filipino woman was punched in the face while riding the San Diego Trolley. This violence must stop – NOW.
The Crisis of Broken Streets in District 6
While canvassing in Mira Mesa one afternoon I stopped by a house on Gold Coast Dr. and asked the homeowner if there was anything he was concerned about. He led me to his front yard where we were hit by flying gravel as a car drove by. "This is my problem," he said. At a meeting on the proposal to rebuild Gold Coast and Parkdale that summer, the city's chief engineer noted with amazement how bad Mira Mesa roads had become. So many roadbeds in Mira Mesa, built quickly and on the cheap in the early 1970s, failed long ago from an intrusion of water, bad drainage, and loose soils. Thanks to Times of San Diego for running my piece on our city's road and infrastructure crisis.
San Diego County Planning Commissioner
I was honored to have been appointed by District 3 Supervisor Terra Lawson-Remer to the San Diego County Planning Commission in January. My appointment was unanimously passed on consent on Feb. 9th, and I was sworn in Feb. 19th. An advisory body to the Board of Supervisors on planning and development issues, the planning commission ensures the county general plan is upheld by reviewing development applications, and as an environmentalist I'll ensure issues relating to biodiversity, endangered species, rising sea levels, wildfire, open space, and upholding CEQA are similarly considered as part of my service to the most biodiverse county in the lower 48 states.
My Grandfather's Labor Legacy
As my family approaches the 100th anniversary of my grandfather's arrival in the U.S., I posted this essay about my grandfather's labor legacy with the United Steelworkers on Labor Day in 2018. A year later, I shared it again, in part because my family found long lost photos of my grandfather following my father's death in December 2018. It serves as a nice reminder that weekends, child labor laws, health care, collective bargaining, paid sick leave, overtime, and so much more came about in the American workplace because workers demanded it as part of the labor movement. Good to remember on Labor Day – or any day.