The LJDC Monthly Meeting Sunday, July 14, 2019
2 – 4:30 pm
PROGRAM: The Case Against Expanding the San Diego Convention Center SPEAKER: Cory Briggs The initiative to expand the convention center will be on the Primary Ballot in March, in spite of the fact that citizens approved Proposition L, requiring such measures to be on the general election ballot in November when voter turnout is greater.
Attorney Cory Briggs began practicing law in 1995 with Mundell, Odlum & Haws in San Bernardino, California, where he primarily litigated commercial and employment-related disputes. In 1998, he moved to Washington, D.C., and added environmental law and regulatory compliance to his practice while pursuing graduate degrees and teaching at The George Washington University Law School and the University of Maryland. Cory returned to southern California in June 2002, and his practice now balances small/family-owned business law with public-interest and government-accountability litigation.
This Month’s Book Recommendations
Vote for US: How to Take Back Our Elections and Change the Future of Voting, by Joshua A. Douglas Prometheus Books (April 9, 2019) 350 Pages In contrast to the anxiety surrounding our voting system, with stories about voter suppression and manipulation, there are actually quite a few positive initiatives toward voting rights reform. Professor Joshua A. Douglas, an expert on our electoral system, examines these encouraging developments in this inspiring book about how regular Americans are working to take back their democracy, one community at a time. More
Give Us the Ballot: The Modern Struggle for Voting Rights in America, by Ari Berman Farrar, Straus and Giroux; 1st edition (August 4, 2015) 384 Pages Countless books have been written about the civil rights movement, but far less attention has been paid to what happened after the dramatic passage of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) in 1965 and the turbulent forces it unleashed. Give Us the Ballot tells this story for the first time. In this groundbreaking narrative history, Ari Berman charts both the transformation of American democracy under the VRA and the counterrevolution that has sought to limit voting rights, from 1965 to the present day. More
Our History Is the Future– Standing Rock Versus the Dakota Access Pipeline, and the Long Tradition of Indigenous Resistance By Nick Estes Published by Verso (Mar 05, 2019) 320 Pages How two centuries of Indigenous resistance created the movement proclaiming “Water is life” In
2016, a small protest encampment at the Standing Rock Reservation in
North Dakota, initially established to block construction of the Dakota
Access oil pipeline, grew to be the largest Indigenous protest movement
in the twenty-first century. Water Protectors knew this battle for
native sovereignty had already been fought many times before, and that,
even after the encampment was gone, their anticolonial struggle would
continue. In Our History Is the Future, Nick Estes traces traditions of
Indigenous resistance that led to the #NoDAPL movement. Our History Is
the Future is at once a work of history, a manifesto, and an
intergenerational story of resistance. More
Fight Like a Mother – How a Grassroots Movement Took on the Gun Lobby and Why Women Will Change the World by Shannon Watts HarperOne (May 28, 2019) 304 Pages Fight
Like a Mother is the incredible account how one mother’s cry for change
became the driving force behind gun safety progress. Along with stories
of perseverance, courage, and compassion, Watts shines a light on the
unique power of women—starting with what they have, leading with their
maternal strengths, and doubling down instead of backing down. While not
everyone can be on the front lines lobbying congress, every mom is
already a multi-tasking organizer, and Shannon explains how to go from
amateur activist to having a real impact in your community and beyond.
Fight Like a Mother will inspire everyone—mothers and fathers, students
and teachers, lawmakers, and anyone motivated to enact change—to get to
work transforming hearts and minds, and passing laws that save lives. More
The LJDC Monthly Meeting Sunday, June 9, 2019 2 – 4:30 pm
PROGRAM:Sunrise Movement and the Green New Deal SPEAKER: Karl Aldinger
The Green New Deal is breaking new ground in the political fight for
government action on the Climate Crisis. Learn about the policy that
the Sunrise Movement, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez & many others are
promoting to take bold action on a grand scale. Karl Aldinger is a
climate activist, policy advocate, and serves as a volunteer Hub
Organizer for Sunrise Movement – San Diego.
At the recent LJDC Exec Board Meeting, it was purposed to ask at the
June monthly meeting, for club members to consider volunteering for the
roles of Parliamentarian, Hospitality chair or committee member, and
executive board Nominating Committee members.
The LJDC Monthly Meeting Sunday, May 19, 2019 2 – 4:30 pm
GUEST SPEAKER: California Senate pro Tempore Toni Atkins will lead off the program Sunday. She is our Senator, representing District 39, which includes La Jolla. She is a historic figure in California as the first woman to head the Senate and the first openly gay person to lead the Senate. She is also the only person to have been Speaker of the Assembly prior to becoming the Senate leader.
PROGRAM: WHAT IS HAPPENING? SPEAKER:Dr. Cody Petterson will discuss the relationship between our climate crisis, our political crisis, our economic crisis, and the evolving ideological struggles within the Democratic Party.
Mark it on your Calendars! Hope to see you on Sunday.
Community Room @ AMC La Jolla 12 Theater 8657 Villa La Jolla Drive San Diego, CA 92037 Map
The LJDC Monthly Meeting Sunday, May 19, 2019 2 – 4:30 pm
PROGRAM: WHAT IS HAPPENING? Dr. Petterson will discuss the relationship between our climate crisis, our political crisis, our economic crisis, and the evolving ideological struggles within the Democratic Party.
SPEAKER: Dr. Cody Petterson is an anthropologist and environmental activist. Born and raised in La Jolla, he attended La Jolla Elementary, Muirlands Junior High, and La Jolla High. He received a BA from UC Berkeley, an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, and a PH.D. in Anthropology from UCSD. He is president of the San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action and serves on the boards of the San Diego River Conservancy and the Resource Conservation District of Greater San Diego. He lives with his wife and two children in La Jolla, where he enjoys his passion for native habitat conservation and restoration.
Community Room @ AMC La Jolla 12 Theater 8657 Villa La Jolla Drive San Diego, CA 92037 Map
Against Charity, by Julie Wark and Daniel Raventos AK Press (January 9th 2018) Charity is not a gift. Gift-giving implies reciprocity, an ongoing relationship. When requital is impossible, the act of giving remains outside mutual ties and charity becomes yet another manifestation of class structure, a sterile one-way act upholding the status quo. Vacuuming up all the profits thanks to a weak labor movement, lower taxes, and tax havens (thanks, lobbyists and loathsome politicians!), the global elite then turn around and remake the world in their own image with charitable donations that speak more of mean-spiritedness than generosity. Postmodern versions of nineteenth-century charity aim to keep wealth and power in a few hands, mocking our desire for greater income equality. Daniel Raventós and Julie Wark argue for an unconditional universal basic income above the poverty line and paid for by progressive taxation to both eradicate poverty and empower recipients—the result being the human right of material existence. The burning issue is not charity but justice. More
The Big Heat: Earth on the Brink by Jeffrey St. Clair and Joshua Frank Published by AK Press (January 4th 2019) The world as we know it is undergoing a sudden and violent transformation, unlike anything the planet has experienced since the Cretaceous Extinction. The evidence is all around us: vast droughts that last decades, super-storms and floods that destroy cities, dwindling aquifers, vanishing glaciers, toxic water supplies, raging wildfires, obscure new diseases, vanishing species and indigenous communities. Our planet is changing faster than evolution can keep up. The forces driving this radical transformation are not natural. The earth has been brought to the brink by a greed-based predatory economic system that chews up anything in its path and spits it out to the bitter end. Environmental journalists Jeffrey St. Clair and Joshua Frank take you on a sobering field trip through the danger zones; from the strip mines of Appalachia to last refuge of the grizzly, from the dirty fracking fields to the world’s most dangerous place, the Hanford Nuclear Site in the Pacific Northwest. The Big Heat charts the battle lines for the future of the planet, from corporate villains to corrupt politicians and the fearless environmentalists who are standing up against the pillaging. This is an unflinching chronicle of the last fight that really matters. More
The Making Of Donald Trump, by David Cay Johnston Melville House (August 2, 2016) The culmination of nearly 30 years of reporting on Donald Trump, this in-depth report by Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter David Cay Johnston takes a revealingly close look at the mogul’s rise to prominence — and, now, ultimate power Covering the long arc of Trump’s career, Johnston tells the full story of how a boy from a quiet section of Queens, NY would become an entirely new, and complex, breed of public figure. Trump is a man of great media savvy, entrepreneurial spirit, and political clout. Yet his career has been plagued by legal troubles and mounting controversy. More
Biased – Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do, by Jennifer L. Eberhardt, PhD Published by Viking (Mar 26, 2019) 352 Pages You don’t have to be racist to be biased. Unconscious bias can be at work without our realizing it, and even when we genuinely wish to treat all people equally, ingrained stereotypes can infect our visual perception, attention, memory, and behavior. This has an impact on education, employment, housing, and criminal justice. In Biased, with a perspective that is at once scientific, investigative, and informed by personal experience, Jennifer Eberhardt offers us insights into the dilemma and a path forward.More
The Uninhabitable Earth: A Story of the Future, by David Wallace-Wells Publisher: Allen Lane (May 7, 2019) The signs of climate change are unmistakable even today, but the real transformations have hardly begun. For a generation, we’ve been taught that warming was a problem of arctic melting and sea levels rising, but in fact it promises to be all-enveloping, driving dramatic changes at every level of our lives, from everyday matters like the supply of chocolate and coffee (likely to dry up) to public health (tens of millions likely to die from pollution) to climate migration (hundreds of millions fleeing unlivable, overheated homelands). We’ve been taught that warming would be slow-but, barring very dramatic action, each of these impacts is likely to arrive within the length of a new home mortgage signed this year. More
Oneness VS.. The 1%, by Kartikey Shiva Vandana Shiva Publisher: Women Unlimited (2018) Widespread poverty and malnutrition, an alarming refugee crisis, social unrest, economic polarisation… have become our lived reality as the top 1% of the world’s seven-billion-plus population pushes the planet—and all its people—to the social and ecological brink. In Oneness vs. the 1%, Vandana Shiva takes on the Billionaires Club of Gates, Buffett, Zuckerberg and other modern Mughals, whose blindness to the rights of people, and to the destructive impact of their construct of linear progress, have wrought havoc across the world. Their single-minded pursuit of profit has undemocratically enforced uniformity and monocultures, division and separation, monopolies and external control—over finance, food, energy, information, healthcare, and even relationships. More
On page 262 of Capital in the 21st Century there are two of the most important sentences I’ve ever read: “…it is essential to be aware of these things: the historical reduction of inequalities of wealth is less substantial than many people believe. Furthermore, there is no guarantee that the limited compression of inequality that we have seen is irreversible.” Does this scare you? It should.
Here are three more books that I loved to pieces and highly recommend:
Black Elk Speaks, “as told through John G. Neihardt“. If you missed this in college you must find the time to read it now. And indulge yourself in the Introduction. Mr. Neihardt describes his first meeting with Black Elk, who was waiting for him, even though no contact had occurred between them. And the Epilogue, which describes their meeting for the last time. I cried. Black Elk tells US history from how he and his people lived it, in his own words, transcribed by Neihardt’s daughter. You will get a clear, first-hand account of our country’s perfidy against the indigenous people. And what life was like before the Europeans’ descendants took over.
Another great book, with flawless writing, is Sonia Sotomayor’s book, My Beloved World. It’s the story of her life, starting from her early childhood and watching Perry Mason, which became the inspiration to become a judge. Yes, Mason got the attention, but the judge had the power! It’s an inspiring, beautiful story, and highlights her as one of our bright lights on the Supreme Court. It’s a delightful book about an amazing person, and well-worth the time in reading it.
If you’ve ever wondered why it’s so difficult to admit a mistake, Being Wrong,by Kathryn Schulz, explains the psychology behind it. There are a lot of people who act and think mistakenly. Yelling at them, or giving them facts, isn’t so helpful. Understanding how the mind works might be. She gives examples of people faced with new facts and all the different ways they react. This knowledge is imperative as we waltz into the 2020 election. Hopefully we will be helped and fortified by inspirational people and books, and their accumulated knowledge and wisdom.
What Does It Mean to be White?, by Robin DiAngelo Peter Lang Inc., International Academic Publishers; Revised edition (June 15, 2016) This is an outstanding (and readable) analysis of whiteness, from incisive and wide-ranging critiques of how white folks deflect, deny, and evade the topic of racism, and the implications of our racial identity and position The author worked with a person-of-color partner for the Dept. of Social and Health Services providing training for public and corporate workers. Her book outlines what she learned and what she and her partner taught. It’s a powerful lesson in “consciousness raising” and understanding of our role in institutional racism. More
Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire, a 500-year History, by Kurt Andersen Random House; 1st Edition edition (September 5, 2017) It’s a NY Times Bestseller. Over 450 pages the author details why this “fake news” moment we are living through is not something entirely new. We were founded by dreamers and have a history of “true believers,” “magical thinkers,” “hucksters” and “suckers. He said that believe-whatever-you-want fantasy is deeply embedded in our DNA, from the Salem witch trials to P.T. Barnum, to Hollywood, our fetish for guns, belief in extraterrestrials and “end times,” and more. He explains how the lines between reality and illusion have become dangerously blurred. Fascinating (and informative) reading. More