EDITOR’S DESK: A wallop at a gallop
Reporting the news is not exactly an art form, but it does take a certain kind of concentration. That's because some stories carry more of an emotional wallop than others. Still, a True Reporter is expected to soldier on and just lay out the facts.
Let's start with the news about the principals being reassigned. That one was particularly hard to swallow. It's not just because of my anger at the district's callousness or disappointment that I won't be seeing people I've gotten to know. There's also the awareness of how much David Engstrom, Terry Martinez and Clay Gómez have invested themselves into their Westside schools. For instance, when Engstrom was hired as Coronado's principal in 2010, after five years as assistant principal, he revealed that "I never want to leave this place." And he's lived up to that all-in attitude ever since. I know he'll do well at Wasson. But I'm sure the adjustment won't be easy. For Martinez, it's a case of being directed away from a school that he started from the remains of two closed schools (including his own, Washington) in 2009, in a building never designed for children of smaller size. And that makeover only worked with the cooperative spirit of Gómez, not playing turf wars with his own school and thus giving the new one (West Elementary) a chance...
Another story with a punch (at least to my mind) was the Wellbriety piece. I came away with a profound respect for the American Indian nonprofit's philosophy as well as its strategy. And that is not to encourage people to wallow in self-pity and racial hatred (as we see certain black leaders do), but to find the courage to face the heart of their pain and in the process to rediscover the best parts of their ancestral culture and gain the healing power of forgiveness...
Finally, there's the solar subsidy. As an "old" urban professional, I can laugh at the obvious ageism. But what an insult to young people, as if it's expected they're incapable of success without putting their hands into other people's pockets.