National Commentary

California Comes Through For Truth

You know the best way to defeat Trumpism? Well, every tool in the arsenal of law enforcement and public opinion needs to be involved. But, fundamentally it comes down to what the voters in California did Tuesday when they so overwhelmingly crushed a bogus recall effort against Gov. Gavin Newsom that no amount of the usual Trumpian accusations of vote fraud and the rest could be elicited in a manner that will be credible to anyone.
Yes, some of the Trumpian GOPers were preparing the groundwork for another fake, protracted vote fraud fight in the face of polls indicating an inevitable defeat of their plans.

But the margin of the blowout against their recall effort was so great, that no one but the most brainwashed Trump cult zealot will be wasting their time trying to prove the election was rigged.

Good for my fellow Californians! And their ability to divine the difference between truth and a fraud is a testament to the great work of everyone who has contributed to the benefits of universal public education, something not everyone believes in these days.

It takes me back to my youth on the rustic seacoast of California, in the little town where my two brothers and I operated for a few years. Very Steinbeckian though it may have been, we lived it day to day. The centerpiece of this little community of 300 souls was the two-room schoolhouse and its asphalt playground.

Our house was a block from the ocean and it was amazing for me to peer out the bedroom window from my upper bunk bed to see the ocean crashing against the rocks below and to the right down to where they were caressing the pylons of the pier a little further on.

That one-room schoolhouse was two blocks away from us. My recollection of my first day was not pleasant. I did not take kindly to another little student claiming she had rights to where I wanted to sit. It worked out, though.
In that little schoolhouse I often mused about the cursive alphabet posted stretching above the length of the green blackboards that were placed on two of the walls in front of us. I was perplexed by how it showed the letter “Q” was to be formed, looking more like a jellyfish, or a big number “2,” than I had learned before.

There I learned how to cut out a pumpkin by folding a sheet of orange paper in half, and one year when on Halloween I was all dressed up as President Thomas Jefferson, the cotton my mother used for my formidable wig, caused me to miss the call when my number came up for a stab at the grab bag of Halloween treats. I protested at the end that my number was never called. I was holding onto a ticket with the number ‘99,’ but learned I was holding it upside down. At any rate, I was granted a late visit to the grab bag box, and pulled something forgettable.

My point: My public education was so indispensably key to my development that I can in no way fathom what my life would have been without it.

In the one general store on the waterfront which also housed the post office, was framed and posted in its rear behind the transaction window a noble portrait of our nation’s president at the time. I will never forget how apropos it seemed then that our president would be named, “True Man!”

I hope everyone in this little town of my youth, where I crafted my first ever edition of ‘The Benton Star’ newspaper at age 7, voted in this week’s election to retain my San Francisco friend, Governor Gavin Newson, to keep his seat by the widest of possible margins. I feel surely they did.

They were fishing people, a colony of Portuguese in fact. My dad, a reclusive skydiver and wing-walker entertainer at county fairs to the north during the Great Depression, and his brother Bob, and their spouses, my mom and Bob’s lovely Betty, had become commercial deep sea divers. So their families, including me, lived and socialized in that tiny town.