Business owners, take note. There’s something magical going on in Alameda. It’s a place where you just send in a notice of your event and, for free, it appears 23,500 times in front of people all over town. Then it appears online, too. People read about the event in print and see it on their computers and their Smartphones. And after they’ve read about it, they stop by, spend their money, and you get to keep it all.


I agree with one statement Patti Wilczek, the executive director of the charter management organization for NEA and ACLC) made in her op-ed piece (“Dispelling Charter School Myths,” March 17). There’s evidence of a new trend regarding charters. 


In February, California Secretary of State Alex Padilla announced that a potential ballot measure, the Elimination of Charter Schools Initiative was cleared to collect petition signatures for possible inclusion on the November 2016 ballot. It’s not yet clear if proponents of the measure have the backing or resources to qualify or launch a campaign for passage. But I’m concerned about this trend and want to take this opportunity to clarify what charter schools are — and what they are not — to dispel some common myths.

I respectfully submit to you an interactive letter for consideration in your next edition. It’s multiple choice and there’s no wrong answer.
Once upon a time in
(a) Alameda
(b) Edwardian England
(c) medieval France
there was a
(a) tenant
(b) peasant
(c) renter
who lived in property owned by a
(a) lord of the manor
(b) lady of the manor
(c) landord
(d) landlady

At 8:17 a.m. on Feb. 25, I had my camera ready to document a frequent feature of my daily drive down Fruitvale Avenue to BART.  

As I approached the railroad tracks just west of San Leandro Avenue in Oakland, the recently installed traffic signals flanking a fancy new system of train warning lights were behaving badly.  

As you can see, both traffic signals say “Go” while the blinking red lights scream, “Stop!”

The railroad barrier has also swung down to block the road.