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Doug’s Rant

| Doug's Rants | June 27, 2019

Here I Go Again:

 As I was taking a break from chasing my grandkids around in Indiana last week, I went on The Signal’s website to see what was going on back home. The first thing that popped out to me was the headline “City to recognize June as Pride Month.” I cringed, thinking back to what I wrote on May 31 regarding my issue with the LGBTQ+ community being recognized and promoted as some sort of special political-type group in the public sector. I was really hoping there would not be a need to address this again (it’s not a comfortable issue for me to rant on), but now with this story about my city doing the same thing, I can’t just let it go.

I will add that if anyone is discriminated against, mistreated or targeted for any reason, the full extent of the law should be enforced to right those types of wrongs.

Before I get too far down this road, this is some of what I wrote on May 31 regarding this issue.

“To avoid getting in some trouble here, I want to be perfectly clear; I am not a homophobe. I can’t relate to the LGBTQ+ community but I do not judge, condemn or have any ill will towards folks who live their lives in that manner. I have had gay employees and friends throughout the years and never gave much thought as to who they were in relationship with. In fact, I’m good friends with a publisher of another weekly newspaper in California who happens to be gay and we get along great and his personal relationship never comes up.

“However, I am confused about the need for people who identify this way to promote and connect the LGBTQ+ lifestyle with their profession.  If someone is in any type of business – entertainment, sports or otherwise – I don’t care who they have sex with; I care about them as a person, how they treat other people and how they do their job.”


Why did the city feel the need to recognize the LGBTQ+ community? I understand the desire to encourage inclusion of all Santa Clarita Valley citizens in political and cultural aspects of our city, what I don’t understand is the need to celebrate a certain group of people’s sexuality. Aren’t they just people who live their lives in Santa Clarita the same way we all do?

I’d feel the same way if it was Old White Guy and Gals month, Straight Parents’ month or a month celebrating Heterosexuals. What if we celebrated bald guys, overweight guys, gray-haired guys and gals, or even those who color their hair? Wouldn’t that seem foolish?

I guess what really bothers me is the city seemingly falling into the trap of pursuing political correctness in order to satisfy the ever-increasing need of those who think emotional idealism is the end-all be-all to solve problems which really don’t matter much in the scheme of life.

This is what I also wrote on May 31, and the offer still stands: “I hope you can see where I’m coming from on this subject, and I strongly urge anyone who disagrees with me and wants to respond in writing to please do so. I will gladly publish it.”

It’s All About Job Performance, Right?

While the Dems relentlessly pursue every avenue of impeachment they can fantasize about, President Trump is relentlessly doing a kick-butt job with the tasks he was elected to do. Sure he doesn’t articulate his performance all that well, but neither does the best coach in the NFL, Bill Belichik, and all he does win, win, win.

I don’t care how you feel about the guy, but tell me how you can argue with his job performance. The one that is jumping out at me right now is how the price of oil is not currently shooting through the roof. In years past, the shenanigans that Iran is pulling these days would have caused the oil market to break out into a conniption fit. But with our oil production gushing at a record pace after Trump took the shackles of Obama’s energy paranoia, we can basically tell the rest of the world to buzz off because we don’t need their stinkin’ oil!

I find it refreshing and encouraging the way President Trump is dealing with the other countries that are causing us problems. While some thought he was going to be a war monger and others now think he is being a wimp, I think he’s applying the shrewd negotiating methods he developed in the business world to maneuver us through these problems without the “lead from behind” idealism crap that plagued his predecessor.

Oh yeah, how about the economy, stupid (James Carville’s famous line)? Talk about kicking butt, who could have imagined how well it’s soaring these days. Of course the president isn’t going to bat a thousand on everything he strives for. But if you ask me, he’s doing one heck of a job for America, and if you want to argue that, go ahead. However, I ask you to deal with just the facts and nothing but the facts, not your assessment of his personality!

 South Carolina Welcomes Candidates:

That was the headline last weekend. I quickly scanned the article to see how these Dem candidates stood on the issues facing our nation these days. Oh, my goodness! Most of what I saw was waist-high rhetoric meant to out-soothe their competitors for the voting souls of likeminded liberal voters. Throw in some Trump-bashing hate speech and you have the makings of perfectly empty campaign speak. What a striking difference in their campaign pledges compared to those of then candidate Trump who laid out his plan to make “America Great Again” with point-by-point plans.

 Keep America Great:

That’s the new slogan for the President’s re-election campaign, but for many, it’s ammunition to throw non-factual dislike at the man, the job he is doing and the danger we face if he is re-elected. But, I’ll tell you where the real danger lies, and that’s if any of the Dem candidates end up as president.

It is absolutely frightening to hear them talk of the amount of spending it will take to cure their perceived ills that plague us Americans today. It reeks of so much socialistic thinking you would think we’re living in different country during an election season.

Even if we discount the spending they tout, the notion of their way of thinking is just plain wrong and goes against everything this country was founded on. I’m writing this before the two debates, and while I hope it doesn’t happen, let’s see how many socialistic and other crazy promises are spouted out of their mouths.

 Quotes, Quips and Headlines:

“Being fat isn’t your fault, getting pregnant isn’t your fault, flunking out of high school isn’t your fault, but having an ancestor half a millennium ago who’s feudal lord owned a slave, that’s totally on you?” (Larry Elder)

*If the Dem Candidates push hard for reparations to African American folks, I call total bull manure. Not one of them gives two rips about this, and it’s all about the votes. Shameful!

 Gay men need to be feminists too (Headline)

*After reading the article, I still don’t get it (Me)

 “I had no sense that he was the soulless bastard that he’s turned into, he used to be kind of like the boob of New York that pretended to be wealthy—or we thought was wealthy—and now he’s just  psychotic.”  (David Letterman on President Trump)

*Hey Dave, have you given any consideration as to the actual job he is doing as president, putting aside you’re personality conflict you have with the man?  We’ve heard and seen you say and do some pretty stupid things along the way, and I don’t think you’d appreciate the same sort of assessment of you as a person.  (Me)

“President Trump has common sense. He doesn’t get caught up in the weeds and he continues to keep us safe. So we don’t go to war with Iran. The Strait of Hormuz is still open and that, my friends, is a good news Trump story.” (Judge Jeanine Piro)

*What she said. (Me)

Eric Trump Says He Was Victim of ‘Disgusting Act’ at Bar, Employee Reportedly Arrested (Headline)

He was harassed and spit at while visiting an upscale Chicago bar just because he’s the president’s son?  Loving compassion by a liberal at its finest. (Me)

“You can do heroin and take a dump on the sidewalk, but vaping is where San Francisco draws the line.” (Tom Elliot)

*It’s a crazy, mixed-up liberal world out there! (Me)

 Letter to the Ranter:

Ok, you look nuts. Then I read the article and figured you have to be nuts to publicly praise the orange buffoon in the WH.   Julie


Live Music

| Entertainment | June 22, 2019

Live Music this week in SCV!

June 21, Fri         7–9pm                  Rock Inn                                      Nathan on piano                       Piano
7–9:30p                Val. Blues & Jazz concerts     Jim Gustin & Truth Jones      Val. Mall
8–11pm                Wine 661                                    Bill Cinque & friends                Classic rock
8–11pm                Hyatt Val. restaurant             Lance Allyn                                 Acoustic CR
8–11:30p              Vincent Hill Station                 Overdrive, on the patio          Classic rock
8–1am                  Amer Legion Newhall            Heavy Metal Night                  Rock
9–11pm                Alchemy                                    Sean Hughes band                  Covers & orig
9–12m                  Newhall Press Room             Jerry Best                                     Live music
9–12m                  Salt Creek Grille                                       Galo Pacheco                              Classic rock
9–1am                  Doc’s Inn                                   Route 69 band                           Rock classics

June 22, Sat        6–10pm                Vincent Hill Station                 Crystal Whiskey                         Country
7–10pm                Backyard Grub & Brews                       the G – 3 Band                          Classic rock
7:30–10p              Vincenzo’s Newhall               Right Side Up                              Classic rock
8–10pm                Alchemy                                    Sean Wiggins duo                     Covers & orig
8–11pm                Hyatt Val. restaurant             Lance Allyn                                 Acoustic CR
8–11pm                Wine 661                                    Tommy Peacock                        Rock mix
8–12m                  VFW 6885                                   Pam & Chad Watson                Country
9–12m                  Salt Creek Grille                                      Jay Bolan                                     Classic rock
9–12m                  Newhall Press Room             Gianna Campa                            Live music
9–12m                  Rock Inn (Lake Hughes)         Sean Hughes band                  Covers & orig

June 23, Sun       10a–2p                                 Saugus Swap meet                 Seventh Switch                          Live music
3–7pm                  Vincent Hill                                Moldy Marvin’s open mic      Various
4–7pm                  Salt Creek Grille patio            Traxx band                                  Classic rock
5–9pm                  Amer Legion Newhall            Steve Brittain & friends          Classic rk jam
5–9pm                  VFW 6885                                  Henry Becker – HonkyTonk Country
7–10pm                Vincenzo’s Newhall               Crush 40 band                            Rock mix
June 25, Tues     6–9:30p                Wolf Creek Brewery              Community Pints night           Live music
7–10pm                Bergie’s steakhouse              Daphne and Company            Blues mix

June 26, Wed     6–9pm                  Route 66 Classic Grill              Various bands                            Live music

June 27, Thur     6 – 9pm                Tomato Joe’s Cyn Ctry          Various bands                            Live music
6:30–9p                Brewery Draconum                Them Twisted Ends                 Reggae
7–10pm                Bergie’s steakhouse              SRBQ band                                   Blues n rock
June 28, Fri         6–9pm                  Wolf Creek Brewery              Various bands                            Live music
7–9pm                  Rock Inn                                      Nathan on piano                       Piano
7–9:30p                Val. Blues & Jazz concerts    Tom Nolan band                       Val. Mall
8–10pm                Alchemy                                    The Grizwalds                            pop, soul
8–11pm                Wine 661                                    Bill Cinque & friends                Classic rock
8–11:30p              Vincent Hill Station                 The Fulcos, on the patio         Classic rock
9–12m                  Salt Creek Grille                       Lance Allyn                                 Acoustic CR

I’d Trade 23 Candidates for One Sure Winner

| Opinion | June 21, 2019

By Peter Funt

Is the bulging field of Democrats seeking the 2020 presidential nomination a sign of strength? Or is it a troubling indication that wresting the presidency from Donald Trump won’t be as easy as it ought to be?

At last count there were 23 “major” candidates including seven senators, four members of Congress, three mayors, two governors and a clutch of other hopefuls. The field has something for everyone: young, old, male, female, black, white, Latino, Asian, gay and straight. They have robust resumes, promising platforms and meaningful messages. And, believe it or not, there are 142 other Democrats who have filed as presidential candidates with the Federal Elections Commission, among them 89-year-old Mike Gravel, the former senator from Alaska. So what’s the problem? Some Democrats think the field is too large, even for this early stage. In Iowa, where the actual process of selecting a nominee begins for real with the caucus Feb. 3, three out of four Democrats planning to participate believe some candidates should drop out now, according to polling by the Des Moines Register.

As I see it, only three – Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren – have a real chance at the nomination. Five others – Cory Booker, Pete Buttigieg, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar and Beto O’Rourke – have long-shot status. The rest are just sucking up oxygen.

This wouldn’t be so bad if one of the three top candidates had the “it” factor of Barack Obama. Yes, Hillary Clinton was loved by her supporters in 2016, but she was widely disliked as well. Her only real challenger, Sen. Bernie Sanders, faced the same love-him or hate-him division. And the others? A dollar says you can’t conjure up the names Lincoln Chafee, Martin O’Malley and Jim Webb. This time around, thinning the roster from 23 to, say, 10, would make it easier to debate – and free up space for lawn signs across Iowa – but it wouldn’t change the bigger problem. The Democratic field is both crowded and flawed.

Joe Biden is the early frontrunner but you have to wonder if that will hold considering age (he’ll be 77 next year), baggage (his positions have changed on key issues over the course of a lengthy career, most recently on the Hyde amendment which bars the use of federal funds for all but a few abortions) and the gaffe gene (he is, after all, Joe being Joe). Bernie Sanders, who usually polls second, is a year older than Biden. He has also shifted on some issues such as gun control, and would spend half his time in a general election campaign explaining what it means to be a “democratic socialist.”

Sad to say, both “Sleepy Joe” and “Crazy Bernie” present soft targets for Donald Trump. A Biden campaign boils down to “Make America Normal Again,” while the Sanders angle is “Make America More Liberal Again.” These are not broad-based themes, and neither moves the presidency away from the control of aging, white males. Elizabeth Warren is a policy wonk, maybe to a fault, but her passion is unmistakable. Yet, she is not particularly effective on the stump, often getting bogged down in her own position papers. She could find herself with the type of negative polling that dashed Clinton’s hopes.

On my scorecard, the next five Democrats have equal or better profiles but lesser chances. Amy Klobuchar is tough, experienced and fluent on the issues. Pete Buttigieg is a genuine star, super slick in interviews and probably the most inspirational Democrat since Obama. Kamala Harris is charismatic and has broad support among black voters. Beto O’Rourke and Cory Booker have sparked pockets of interest with their high-energy stump styles. Still, the odds don’t favor this group. Buttigieg is probably eight years away from a real shot at becoming the nation’s first openly gay president. Harris has equivocated badly on straightforward questions, leaving some to wonder if she has the depth at this stage of her career to be president. Klobuchar, Booker and O’Rourke can’t seem to find a lane that could carry them through the primary process.

Which brings us back to the top three, any one of whom would make a fine president and all of whom should be able to defeat Trump. Then again, no Democrat in memory had a better chance of winning the presidency than Clinton, who was Trumped in the Electoral College. Democratic voters might hope that the first debates next week will clarify things. That’s doubtful. Debating could speed the exit of some candidates who never really had a chance, but it’s unlikely to change things at the top. As Republicans proved in 2016 with a field of 17, swaying opinion is difficult on an overcrowded stage, and this month’s monstrosity will involve 20 of the 23 candidates plus five moderators.

If you’re worried about a repeat of 2016 and, like me, long for someone with more charisma and fewer drawbacks, then you’re stuck with the words of Iowa playwright Meredith Willson in “The Music Man”: “Ya got trouble, my friend.”

Peter Funt is a writer and speaker. His book, “Cautiously Optimistic,” is available at Amazon.com and CandidCamera.com. © 2019 Peter Funt. Columns distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate.

Trump Throws Dirt in His Own Eye

| Opinion | June 21, 2019

By Michael Reagan

What the heck was President Trump doing?

What was he thinking when he told ABC’s star fake journalist George Stephanopoulos on Wednesday that if a foreign adversary offered him dirt on a political opponent he’d take a look at it before calling the FBI.

That was an incredibly stupid thing to say. And all day Thursday in the media we heard a bipartisan chorus of everyone but his wife Melania saying exactly that. But what was Trump even doing giving a professional Clinton apologist like Stephanopoulos unlimited access to him for two whole days?

Has he forgotten that his chief enemy is Fake News, Inc.?

And can’t the president restrain his ego for a few days and let the news media focus on something else but him? How about the total collapse of the Mueller Report, the impending investigation into the corrupt origins of the Russian Collusion Hoax, the southern border crisis or the latest bumblings of old Joe Biden?

No chance.

For better or worse, Trump is still Trump – and always will be.

But that’s no excuse. His statement was not just wrong, it was politically dumb.What he said to Stephanopoulos didn’t merely provide several days of fresh free ammo to the Democrats on the House committees who want to impeach him.

It also may have tested the loyalty of the 42 percent of MAGA Americans who so far have been willing to support him no matter what crazy thing he says or does. In this case, most hard-core Trump supporters probably will say, “So what? Hillary Clinton didn’t just accept Russian dirt on Trump during the 2016 election.

“She and her corrupt campaign actually paid someone to get fake dirt on Trump from Russia and put it in a dossier to give to her soulmates running the FBI.”

Stephanopoulos and his liberal pals in the mainstream media conveniently forgot what Hillary’s gang actually did with Russian dirt because they were so busy beating up Trump for what he said he might do if he were offered dirt on an opponent. But the media’s blind liberal bias doesn’t absolve Trump of his stupidity or his mistake. And it doesn’t absolve his die-hard supporters of their hypocrisy.

Imagine if President Obama or any other Democrat had made that statement to Stephanopoulos. Talk radio and the conservative media world would have gone nuts – justifiably. Meanwhile, what’s happening in Washington on important problems like health care reform and border security? Nothing – not even gridlock.

Republicans and Democrats in Congress can agree on just one thing, and we’ll see what it is when they vote for it in a few days – a pay raise for themselves. In our upside-down Trump World of Washington, Democrats and Republicans have flipped 180-degrees on issues like immigration and the national debt ceiling.

Today Democrats want open borders and Republicans don’t.

And remember how Republicans were always worrying about the soaring national debt, even before Obama nearly doubled it to $20 trillion? Now, after Trump has added about $2 trillion more to the federal debt, all we hear from Re-publicans on the subject are crickets.

The only person left who consistently warns us about our rising national debt these days is William Devane in those Rosland Capital gold commercials on TV. You’d think that after what happened in last fall’s election you’d see some action in Congress on health care or immigration, but there’s been nothing.

That’s because it’s been clear for more than three decades that Democrats and Republicans would rather have both issues as political weapons than come up with the bipartisan answers to fix them. If they fix them, they lose the issue.

Which is why the 2020 election is going to be about health care and immigration, the 2024 election is going to be about health care and immigration, the 2028 election is going to be about health care and immigration, the 2032 election is…

Copyright 2019 Michael Reagan. Michael Reagan is the son of President Ronald Reagan, a political consultant, and the author of “Lessons My Father Taught Me: The Strength, Integrity, and Faith of Ronald Reagan.” He is the founder of the email service reagan.com and president of The Reagan Legacy Foundation.

Pinot Grigio with Heirloom Tomato and Summer Squash Casserole

| Entertainment | June 21, 2019

By Beth Heiserman

There’s nothing better than a crisp, cool and refreshing wine with a light dinner on a hot night. Most of us will agree that when we get home from a long day at work during summer, sometimes we don’t feel like cooking. I tend to cook a few meals at one time and then enjoy them all week. I will say I do have more of a challenge than others in reheating foods, since I don’t have a microwave at home. With this in mind, I tend to prepare dishes that can be reheated in the same dish I originally prepared it in, or I just make enough to eat that evening.

My dad and I recently went to the farmers’ market again. We found some delicious fruit and we also got that amazing orange juice that we love. As we were walking around, I saw mini summer squash and heirloom tomatoes and thought I just had to get some. I make a lot of casseroles for my dad each week and thought this would be perfect for him. Of course, I started to think about what wine would pair the best with this dish, and that’s 2016 Renaissance by Reyes Pinot Grigio. Coincidently, last June, I wrote about Pinot Grigio. To me, summer and Pinot Grigio go hand in hand.

Pinot Grigio can have notes of tropical fruits, pears, apples and even melon. It is generally harvested early to retain its acidity. The 2016 Pinot Grigio won a silver medal in the 2017 O.C. Fair Commercial Wine Competition and it received 83 points from the Wine Enthusiast Magazine (12/2017 edition). On the palate, this wine has notes of green apples and a bit of pear. Serve chilled, this wine can be enjoyed with linguine and clams, pesto parmesan cheese or a torta di mele (an Italian apple tart).

I know that having French ingredients with an Italian wine sounds funny, but I have a Dijon mustard addiction and love to add it to many dishes. This time, I used a Dijon that is made with rosé wine and grapefruit. This has notes of citrus and red berries with just the right amount of acidity and sweetness to pair well with summer vegetables.

Heirloom Tomato and Summer Squash Casserole

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
6 medium yellow summer squash or zucchini
6 medium patty pan squash
1 large sweet onion
1 tsp Dijon Mustard (I used a Rosé wine and grapefruit Dijon, but a country-style would work, just add a squeeze of grapefruit juice)
¼ cup 2016 Renaissance by Reyes Pinot Grigio
½ cup grated Parmesan
½ cup panko crumbs
1 cup shredded gouda cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Heat the oil and butter in a large cast iron skillet over medium heat.
3. Sauté the squash, and onion for about five minutes.
4. Add 2016 Renaissance by Reyes Pinot Grigio to pan and continue to cook for about 10 minutes.
5. Add mustard to mixture and turn off heat.
6. Let rest in pan for about five minutes.
7. Stir into mixture the Gouda cheese and sour cream.
8. Add salt and pepper, to taste.
9. In a small mixing bowl, mix together the panko crumbs and parmesan cheese.
10. Then, top squash with mixture.
11. Place in oven and bake for 20 minutes or until the top is golden and bubbly.
12. Serve.

The Silent Muslim Majority & Jihad

| Opinion | June 21, 2019

By L. Rob Werner

We’ve all heard of the terrible massacre of people at the Al Noor Mosque in New Zealand. But have you heard that mosque produced at least two Al-Qaida terrorists whose parents claim were radicalized by teachings at the mosque?

In our country, we value freedom of religion and insure this via the First Amendment to our constitution which states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”

Many American settlers fled the old world because the established religion did not tolerate their religion. Our founding fathers did not want the government to establish a national religion. The reference to “free exercise thereof” should not be used as a shield to excuse a religion’s abuses that violate our laws.

Most religions have at some point in their history engaged in persecutions. When Moses led his people to the promised land, it was occupied, and he ordered their extermination. Christians have the inquisition and crusades while the Muslims have their invasions and mass killings in the Christian world.

Religions within the United States have almost universally moderated their views to accept coexistence with competing religious thoughts. The odds are that if you attended a Christian or Jewish service which advocates butchering people who don’t accept your faith, you would speak up. You would do something to bring attention to this horrid behavior. You would seek the exclusion of this teaching from your house of worship. You might seek criminal prosecution of the advocate.

Islam is an old-world religion which lacks reformation. Orthodox preaching, if accepted, justifies physical and sexual abuse, as well as murder. Practicing another faith is penalized by execution. A major difference in the Muslim community is that those who do not practice Jihad do not fight against its preaching in their schools and houses of worship. Many of the Muslim faith still hold onto the cruelties inherent in an ancient religion. Muslim-run countries are not democratic, and citizens are not allowed to question established views. American Muslims enjoy our freedoms enough to speak against our country but not enough to speak out against their religion’s teachings. Maybe this is because the first is advocated by their religious leaders and the second is not tolerated.

There are people who want America Muslim. Valerie Jarrett, a senior advisor to President Obama stated in her 1977 Stanford University Yearbook, “I am Iranian by birth and of my Islamic faith … using freedom of religion in America against itself.” The problem with this is that it would be a violation of our constitution for the Muslim faith to be our national religion. Nor would our founders have extended the definition of “free exercise” of religion to include practices that destroy other rights guaranteed by our constitution.

Our nation can fight back by revoking citizenships and seeking criminal prosecutions of violators of the law but this is not enough.

It is time for Muslims who value freedom, who love this country, who don’t accept the violent preaching to speak up and act to preserve their liberties. Albert Einstein tried to teach us a lesson when he said, “The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.”

Take the PC Police Pop Quiz

| Opinion | June 21, 2019

By Harry Parmenter

After reading Doug’s Rant a few weeks ago about the PC police cracking down on the word “owner,” I picked my jaw up off the floor and decided to share some other words I’ve learned are now verboten; that is if you fear the PC police, which you should NOT.

First, however, I wondered exactly who are the people making these rules? Academics? Left-wing pundits? Random crackpots? The media? The inverted pyramid (“Who/What/When/Where/Why”) that used to form the backbone of journalism school has been erased and replaced by agenda driven opines masquerading as news, and this politically correct drivel has probably sprung from there as well.

So, again, thanks to Doug. I now know that my wife and I are the “managing partners” of our home. That makes the bank holding our mortgage the racist “owner.” I want MY reparations!

Recently I was in a meeting where we had to strike the word “freshman” from a speech because it is not gender neutral. This was the day before I walked into a Manhattan theatre to find a sign outside the men’s room encouraging me to use the bathroom I most identified with, i.e. I could just sail into the ladies room with my deep voice, five o’clock shadow and a pithy “Hello, ladies!” I kid you not. And, literally, as I was drafting this, I got an email telling me someone’s new post-op byline is (names changed) Emma Tom Van Wicklen. But I digress.

Let’s test your PC vocabulary, as well as your memory about anyone or anything in history that can be construed as racist (Kate Smith, Confederate Army, Robert C. Lee Parkway) while we give Castro, Mao Tse Tung and t-shirt idol Che Guevara a free pass.

Is the italicized word or phrase below allowed in today’s America? YES or NO?

“Bernie’s a real basket case.” NO. Demeans the mentally ill. And don’t even think about “retarded.” But you knew that.

“Root for the Giants? No can do.” NO. Mocks Chinese people learning to speak English.

“That guy at the mall gypped me!” NO. Implies root word expansion “gypsies” are tramps and thieves. Cher beware. By the way, if you’ve been to Italy in the last 30 years you know gypsies are shifty, to say the least.

“Reading the Gazette every week…that’s just a rule of thumb.” NO. The phrase “rule of thumb” connotes domestic violence. This makes me love the Rolling Stones even more for continuing to perform “Under My Thumb.”

“They grandfathered in Jakes’ Way to Canyon Country.” NO. It’s something to do with an 1867 southern voting act benefitting white people.

“They had to send the paddy wagon over to Jake’s Way again.” NO. “Paddy wagon” disparages the Irish and infers they are all drunks who wind up in the paddy wagon. (I am Irish and just said “paddy wagon” ten times in a row and nothing happened.

“That bookstore clerk really sold me down the river recommending the former First Lady’s book.” NO. Slavery. Mark Twain would never find a publisher today for “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” or “Huckleberry Finn,” two seminal novels in American literature.

“She just got hysterical when she couldn’t download the hot yoga app.” NO. Anti-woman.

“Hey you! That’s right, you! You’re a moron!” NO. Cruel.

“And you’re an imbecile, too!” NO. Bullying.

“Eenie, meenie, miney, mo…” Don’t even go there.

When will it end? Never. When did it start? I actually think the morphing of the word “gay” with its joyful connotations from “the gay ‘90s” and “have a gay old time” to a word defining homosexuality was pivotal. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Words change meaning over time (“sick” now equals “cool,” “awesome,” etc.) as language evolves. But random rules about what common words and phrases can or can’t be uttered are just silly. Again, don’t know where they’re coming from but guessing some freshman took ownership and started saying no can do as a rule of thumb, refused to grandfather anyone out of the paddy wagon and sold them down the river to some hysterical, imbecilic moron.

Just say NO to the PC Police.

Lakers Turn Their Attention to Signing Other Key Free Agents

| Sports | June 20, 2019

By Diego Marquez

The Los Angeles Lakers finally completed one of the most anticipated trades that’s been lingering over the franchise’s head since about halfway into the season. They acquired All-Star power forward/center Anthony Davis from the New Orleans Pelicans in exchange for the majority of their “young core” that the Lakers had intended to groom, sending players: Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Josh Hart along with three first round picks, including this year’s No. 4 overall pick in tomorrow’s draft.

Signing Davis was a high priority for the Lakers front office, and now that it’s complete, they can turn their attention to thinning out the rest of the roster and the signing of another max free agent like Kawaii Leonard, Jimmy Butler and Kemba Walker.

“Lakers are trying to expand Anthony Davis trade and create ability to open max salary slot on July 6, sources tell @BobbyMarks42 and me,” said ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski via Twitter. “Lakers offering contracts of Mo Wagner/Jemerrio Jones/Isaac Bonga to additional teams, so L.A. can satisfy CBA rules on creating $32M in space.”

In order to complete the third signing of a max player, Los Angeles’ General Manager Rob Pelinka must have Davis waive his $4 million trade kicker so that the Lakers can free up $32 million in cap space to offer potential free agents. Then the organization can turn its attention to filling out the rest of the roster with complementary role players, with names like Patrick Beverly, JJ Redick and other notable key free agent shooters.

The Beach Boys, Rick Springfield, David Spade and Travis Tritt Included in 2019-20 Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center (PAC) Season

| Canyon Country Magazine | June 17, 2019

If the 2019-20 Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center (PAC) season is any indication, there’s no reason to leave the Santa Clarita Valley in search for quality entertainment from internationally acclaimed acts and artists.

The PAC’s lineup features a wide range of performers and musicians, as well as family-friendly programs, as part of its College of the Canyons Presents season.

Highlighting the 2019-20 PAC schedule are performances by:

Grammy Award-winner Rick Springfield — Sept. 13, 2019
Comedian David Spade — Oct. 19, 2019
The Beach Boys Christmas Tour — Dec. 4, 2019
A Charlie Brown Christmas Live — Dec. 18, 2019
Laser Spectacular Featuring the Music of Pink Floyd — Jan. 11, 2020
Grammy Award-winner and country music legend Travis Tritt — Feb. 18, 2020
Llama Llama Live — Feb. 9, 2020

Other acts and artists visiting the PAC this season include: Red Hot Chilli Pipers; Santa Clarita International Guitar Festival; Stunt Dog Experience, Dinosaur World Live!

“This year’s PAC season is one not to be missed,” said Lindsay Gambini, PAC director. “We are very excited to offer high-quality entertainment for audience members of all ages.”

As in years past, the PAC will also host a number of College of the Canyons theatre, music and dance department productions, as well as other community group performances.

PAC series ticket package sales will begin at 10 a.m. Tuesday, June 11.

Individual ticket sales will begin at 10 a.m. Monday, June 17.

Tickets can be purchased online, over the phone, or in person at the PAC box office.

For more information about the PAC 2019-20 season or to purchase tickets, visit www.canyonsPAC.com or call the PAC box office at (661) 362-5304.

VIA Presents ‘The Truth about Your Company Culture’

| Community | June 14, 2019

The Valley Industry Association will be presenting “The Truth About Your Company Culture… and what it’s really costing your business” at their monthly business luncheon on Tuesday, June 18, 2019 at 11:45 a.m. at the Hyatt Regency Valencia, located at 24500 Town Center Drive in Valencia. Celebrated speaker Jorge Lopez of J&M Entertainment will present information designed to help business leaders evaluate their company culture and provide tools for improvement.

“One question business leaders should ask themselves is how engaged or disengaged are their employees, and what is that costing them,” said Lopez, a seasoned professional in the events and entertainment industry. “More importantly, what can they do about it?”

“In a period of low unemployment, it’s important to not only retain your best employees, but to also attract and recruit new employees,” Lopez said. “In the VIA presentation I’ll also share how to retain your best customers.”

Corporate culture refers to the shared values, attitudes, standards, and beliefs that characterize members of an organization and define its nature, according to Inc. magazine. It is rooted in an organization’s goals, strategies, structure, and approaches to labor, customers, investors, and the greater community.

“While every company has a culture, not all cultures help a company reach its goals,” said VIA Board Chairwoman Teresa Todd. “VIA members can realize a competitive advantage in developing and growing their business by recognizing their own culture and how it may or may not contribute to the bottom line. The information provided in this month’s Speaker Series luncheon promises to have actionable takeaways.”

“VIA is known for its timely and relevant programming,” said Kathy Norris, VIA CEO. “Each month we develop programs around topics that are relevant to our local business community.” Future programs include the second annual State of the State on Tuesday, July 23 featuring California State Senator Scott Wilk and Assemblymember Christy Smith, and the return of the VIA CEO Forum on Tuesday, August 20, 2019.

Reservations are required. Tickets are available at www.VIA.org/calendar or by calling 661-294-8088. For more information, contact the VIA office at admin@via.org.

About the Valley Industry Association (VIA)

The Valley Industry Association of Santa Clarita represents business interests throughout the Santa Clarita Valley. VIA provides its members – industrial, commercial and service companies – the opportunity to collaborate on a broad range of business issues. In addition to being a legislative advocate, VIA serves as a one-stop shop for relevant business information, supports local educational initiatives, professional development, and provides networking opportunities. Visit www.VIA.org for more information.

Raging Moderate: Some Final Thoughts About Mueller

| Opinion | June 14, 2019

Breaking his two-year vow of silence, special counsel, professional Boy Scout and part time monk Robert S. Mueller III took time from his busy schedule of transitioning to the public sector and spoke to the country for almost ten whole minutes. And we were honored.

Part of the thrill was hearing what the man sounds like, as this was the first time he’s spoken to the press since his appointment. Too bad we can’t say the same thing about the major subject of his investigation.

It’s pretty obvious the hastily arranged press conference was designed to keep Democrats from calling Mueller to testify on Capital Hill about his investigation. And the fact that Attorney General William Barr was out of town probably didn’t hurt.

Mueller knows most of America would rather dive into a piranha tank wearing a raw meat bathing suit than slog through the 448 pages of his investigative gobbledy-gook, so he grasped this opportunity to give the world the Reader’s Digest Condensed Version, highlighting the sticky bits.

He maintains the report is his testimony and there is nothing else to add, at all, ever. In other words, he asks the questions pard’ner, he don’t answer them. Which is fine, because Bob Mueller is not the most colorful speaker in the world. The man is so dry, when he talks, little puffs of dust fly out of his mouth.

It was never a fair fight. Robert Mueller is the ultimate “by the book” guy who believes in playing by the rules. Whereas Donald Trump believes the rules are meant to be broken and has never read a book.

A particular phrase from the report was emphasized: “If we had confidence the president didn’t commit a crime we would have said so.” Boom. The essence of the whole thing condensed to a single line. Too complicated for you? He said if they thought the president was innocent, they would have said so. But they didn’t say so. Ergo…

He also said Donald Trump’s conduct warrants an investigation, which he wasn’t able to do, because of a justice department policy that prohibits charging a sitting president with a crime. If he could have, he would have, but he couldn’t, so he didn’t. There you go, Congress. No pressure.

They’re still deciding whether to subpoena Mueller to testify in front of Congress, but the former FBI Director’s desire to sit in front of a doubly hostile crowd of half angry Democrats and half angry Trumpsters appears to be between zero and you-got-to-be-freaking-kidding.

Mueller doesn’t want to testify. The attorney general refuses to co-operate. Nobody from the administration is turning over requested documents. The White House is expanding executive privilege to pizza delivery orders. Congressional Democrats must be developing a complex.

Responding to the sideshow, the president tweeted “I had nothing to do with the Russians helping me win the election.” Oops. Then he said that wasn’t what he meant and people are picking on his every word. Well, yeah. You’re the guy in charge. Every word matters.

Perhaps this is just one more reason why, traditionally, the presidency has not been an entry-level position.

Copyright 2019, Will Durst, distributed by the Cagle Cartoons Inc. syndicate.

Will Durst is an award-winning, nationally acclaimed columnist, comic and former sod farmer in New Berlin, Wisconsin. For a calendar of personal appearances, including his new one-man show, “Durst Case Scenario,” please visit willdurst.com.

New Art Exhibit At City Hall To Showcase  ‘Quilts For All’

| Community | June 14, 2019

Works created by various artists from The Santa Clarita Valley Quilt Guild will soon grace the walls of the First Floor Gallery at City Hall in the newest exhibit starting this week called “Quilts for All.” The exhibit will be on display through October 10. The community is invited to celebrate the new exhibit at a free art reception being held on Wednesday, June 26, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at City Hall. Come enjoy light refreshments, live music, meet the artists and discuss art.

This Santa Clarita Valley Quilt Guild promotes the art of quilting through sharing, friendship, education and meaningful service to the community. In 2018, the Guild developed several projects for the residents of Santa Clarita, including the donation of 27-bed quilts for Habitat for Heroes, 78 quilts to Home4Families (one for each new homeowner that closed escrow), 350 placemats for seniors who receive home food delivery and much more.

The First Floor Gallery in City Hall is located at 23920 Valencia Boulevard. City Hall business hours are Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

For more information regarding the art exhibit, contact Jeff Barber at jbarber@santa-clarita.com or call (661) 290-2256. For details regarding other city art exhibits, visit SantaClaritaArts.com.

Drag Queen Story Hour Comes to the Library

| Opinion | June 14, 2019

A friend emailed me recently asking if I’d ever heard of “Drag Queen Story Hour.”

At first, I thought it was something like Oprah’s Book Club, only with better-dressed participants. But I did a little research, and realized that this was a “thing” that had been going on for a while across the country.

In fact, if you go to Dragqueenstoryhour.org, this is what you find under a photo of a drag queen, a smiling mother and a petrified looking toddler: “DQSH captures the imagination and play of the gender fluidity of childhood and gives kids glamorous, positive and unabashedly queer role models. In spaces like this, kids are able to see people who defy rigid gender restrictions and imagine a world where people can present as they wish, where dress-up is real.”

No child should be forced to confront radical ideas and controversial social movements before they are able to use the potty by themselves. We are talking about children who are settling in at the library to hear about Peppa Pig and Horton hearing a Who. This is a time when the little ones should be held in their mothers’ laps, sipping chocolate milk or juice from their sippy cups as they become mesmerized by the magic of carefully chosen words.

This is not a time when some man in spandex, tulle and glitter should be confusing them with the sight of a dude with an Adam’s Apple and well-developed biceps touching up his makeup and hitching up his brassiere.

There is a concerted effort afoot to normalize the whole idea of gender fluidity. Bryn Mawr College, my alma mater, has a guidebook containing approximately 70 different pronouns to be used when addressing strangers. Some school districts in Pennsylvania are allowing transgender students to use either the bathroom or locker room that accommodates their assumed “gender identity.” Sexual orientation and identity are the new buzzwords for “tolerance” and “equality,” and we are all supposed to fall in line and be as open-minded as Twitter will allow us to be.

All well and good, except when it comes to little children. No matter how evolved you want to be, no three-year-old should have to figure out why the person who sounds like daddy but looks and smells like mommy is reading them a story about rainbows and unicorns. We might think it would wash right over their heads and that they would just enjoy hearing the stories. But if that’s the case, why does the Drag Queen web page talk about teaching kids about people who “defy rigid gender restrictions?” Clearly, there is some indoctrination going on here.

Haverford Township Library, my hometown library, announced that in honor of Pride Month, it was going to host a “Drag Queen Story Hour” on Saturday, June 15th. Some residents of the township seem happy enough with the idea. Phil Goldsmith, an old friend and former colleague who is the president of the board of the library, told me we’re risking a very slippery slope if we start canceling events because of some opposition.

“Last year was the first time we had Drag Queen Storytime. More than 200 children and parents attended the event, one of our largest events of the year. We had virtually no complaints either prior to the event or afterwards. I attended and was blown away by the enthusiasm of the children and parents,” Goldsmith said. “I don’t expect everyone to agree with all of our choices – sometimes I don’t – but I would hope that we can all agree that it is up to parents to decide what is appropriate for their children, not others.”

Bill Lorraine, a physician and resident of Haverford Township, said he became very concerned when he first heard of Drag Queen Story Hour.

“Gender dysphoria is a serious psychological condition. It is not genetically determined, but rather is influenced by environmental factors,” Lorraine said. “Therefore exposing young children to something like drag queen story hour can predispose them to the development of gender dysphoria and the many negative consequences that go with it.”

Even though I sympathize with Bill, I also see Phil’s point about wanting to celebrate diversity and be an open and tolerant community. But the rules are different when you are dealing with children.

A few years ago, when the Boy Scouts got into trouble with the City of Philadelphia for not accepting openly gay scouts, I wrote a bunch of columns about how adults should not impose their wishes and will on children. By that I mean that while it is all well and good to talk about tolerance and diversity and inclusion, we have to look deep into ourselves to determine if what we are doing is intended to help our kids, or to validate our own sense of worth as adults.

Reading the web page of Drag Queen Story Hour, it is clear that this whole program is designed to normalize gender fluidity and make “drag queens” just one of many accepted expressions of our “identity.” To me, that is nothing more than adults trying to shove their agendas down the throats of little kids.

Now, about those overdue library fees…

Copyright 2019 Christine Flowers. Flowers is an attorney and a columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News, and can be reached at cflowers1961@gmail.com.

Local Organization Teaches More Than Just Performance

| Entertainment | June 14, 2019

by Natalia Radcliffe

The stage: Some live for it, some are terrified of it.

It is a place that allows escape from the mundane realities of daily life and into the fantastical world of imagination.

ESCAPE musical theatre is a local company that offers children the opportunity to explore the world of the stage when they need a getaway from daily life.

The company started back in 2002, rehearsing and performing in local grade schools. Nowadays, the nonprofit organization boasts over 300 participants in the program. It conducts shows at COC’s Performing Arts Center and has its own building in Santa Clarita.

“We went from one show a year, then maybe a year or two later, two shows a year, and now, this will be our third year with two shows and two weekends each,” said Elizabeth Burson, founder of the company and the artistic director, musical director and conductor.

For some ESCAPE alumni, it was more than just a pleasant activity to do a few times a week; it was their home.

“It was kind of like a childhood daycare, in a sense, all four of us kids growing up in the company,” said Kayla Burson, daughter of the founders and a choreographer for the company. “Being brought up in the company just meant that theater was always my home. I can’t even consider … my life without ESCAPE Theatre, and that just continued a passion past high school for performing for me.”

Those that participate in ESCAPE don’t just learn performance techniques. They also learn about themselves and the heights they can reach.

“I think it helps you to be creative, I think it helps you face your fears, I think that it helps you to talk to people of many different ages (and) communication skills,” said Kayla.

“Theater gives all kids a place,” said Leesa Veluzat, an assistant director of the company. “You can be somebody that … doesn’t really know what they like and hasn’t figured out what that hobby is or what that passion is, and it doesn’t have to be theater. …. That’s the thing that’s so beautiful about it … we have a lot of kids that end up, maybe being the shyest, quietest child, and then when they’re done with ESCAPE, they can talk, or (be) a lead in a show.”

The experiences children gain through participating in ESCAPE can help them not just on the stage, but in other aspects of their lives as well.

“What we want them to do is have some confidence,” said Kyle Burson, founder of the company and the show director, set designer and set fabricator of the company. “You can go into a job interview and say ‘Hey, I got no problem with this, I was in front of 900 people and performing, so it’s not as scary.’”

One long-time participant in the program put it this way: “(Children have) an opportunity to take risks and try things that they (have) never done before … with the support of friends, and then to discover that they could sing, and they could dance and they could learn lines and be funny in a role … their confidence grew,” said Barry Kemper, an assistant director of the company and technical director and stage manager.

Nine years after they first performed the show, ESCAPE will be doing “Li’l Abner” once again on June 14-16 and 21-22 at the Performing Arts Center. For more information, visit their website at www.escapetheatre.org.

Bad Boys and Girls

| Police Blotter | June 13, 2019

Two unemployed individuals were arrested for burglary, including a 47-year-old Porter Ranch resident and a 36-year-old Van Nuys resident.

A 32-year-old caregiver from Newhall was charged with rape by force/fear. And a 19-year-old unemployed Canyon Country resident was booked for resisting an officer.

Three individuals were arrested for corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant/etc., including a 33-year-old unemployed Saugus resident, a 26-year-old sales representative from Northridge and 37-year-old firefighter from Saugus.

DUIs with prior arrests include:

24-year-old server from Agua Dulce
20-year-old care salesman from Canyon Country
28-year-old baker from Saugus
52-year-old film editor from Stevenson Ranch
26-year-old loan officer from Malibu
36-year-old cook from Canyon Country
25-year-old laborer from Canyon Country
25-year-old occupational therapist from Corona

Charges of possession of a controlled substance went to:

31-year-old cashier from Canyon Country
46-year-old unemployed Lancaster resident
26-year-old salesman from Canyon Country
20-year-old unemployed Porter Ranch resident
40-year-old unemployed Canyon Country resident
25-year-old “stage setter” from Canyon Country
54-year-old contractor from Porterville
35-year-old tow truck driver from Palmdale
28-year-old mechanic from Canyon Country

What is the Function of a ‘Punt’ on a Bottle?

| Entertainment | June 13, 2019

by Beth Heiserman, Reyes Winery

This past weekend, a customer had asked the question, what is a punt for? First, I will describe what a punt is before I answer what it is used for. A punt is the indentation at the bottom of a wine bottle. This is generally a topic which there has been no true explanation for its use or its history. I was taught it was from the mold.

More recently, someone had told me they thought it was when they were blowing the glass. As they started to blow glass using a blowpipe, they would place it on a base and the base would leave the indent, or what we refer to as a punt. A pontil or a punty is the rod they use when blowing glass. The punt is the blemish that is created during the process.

Back in December 2016, I wrote about the history of a corkscrew. I had mentioned that Kenelm Digby is considered the creator of the commercial wine bottle. In the 1630s, Digby manufactured wine bottles which had a tapered neck, a collar and a punt. Digby’s bottles were much more durable than what was available. He made them in colors of green or brown, which protected the contents from light. In 1662, parliament recognized his invention of his technique for the modern wine bottle.

About 15 years ago, I took many wine classes and I was taught many different theories about the wine bottle. It was mentioned that the punt was part of the structure that allowed it to handle the pressure of champagne or the re-fermentation of white wine in a bottle.

Nowadays, I have heard that the punt was created to allow the sediment to collect and helped to prevent it from being poured from the bottle to a glass. I was always skeptical about this theory. The size of the punt doesn’t mean the quality of the wine is better. Sometimes, I have seen people look at the punt without knowing the wine, thinking the bigger the punt, the better the wine should be. That is not true. A deeper punt does make the wine bottle look pricier and more special.

Baby Boomers’ One Nation Under God

| Opinion | June 13, 2019

by Gary Curtis

Earlier this week, I attended the Board of Directors meeting for our 55+ senior community. The meeting was called to order and hundreds of Baby Boomers stood with their hands over their hearts and recited the brief, 31-word Pledge of Allegiance, exactly as they had done since their childhood:

“I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

June 14 is observed as “Flag Day,” in what radio commentator Michael Medvid calls “this greatest nation on God’s green earth.” Interestingly, it is also the birthday of our 45th president, Donald J. Trump.

This national banner, our “stars and stripes,” has not always had the institutionalized form of patriotic recognition, which this pledge provides. Over the more than two centuries of our nation’s existence, millions upon millions of members in our armed forces have pledged their support to defend with their lives the Constitution of the United States and our great democratic way of life. But, for well over a century, average citizens have shared their patriotic allegiance to this nation, with its values and dreams, by voluntarily reciting this public Pledge of Allegiance.

According to Smithsonian Magazine, the pledge originated as part of a patriotic program for schoolchildren at the dedication of a prominent exhibition for the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’s arrival in the New Word, in October 1892. Just a quarter-century after the end of our Civil War, this original pledge invoked allegiance to one indivisible nation:

“I pledge allegiance to my flag and the Republic for which it stands — one Nation indivisible — with liberty and justice for all.”

This original version remained in public use until 1923, when the words “my flag” were changed to “the Flag of the United States.” The following year the Pledge was modified again with the addition “of America” after “Flag of the United States,” to help clarify to immigrants which country’s flag they were pledging their new allegiance. This version of the Pledge was then codified by Congress into Public Law in 1942, as patriotism swelled following the attack on Pearl Harbor and our entrance into wars on two fronts.

The Pledge remained unchanged until the realities of the “Cold War” swept across our nation in the early 1950s. Atheistic Communism was resisted in the West and religious leaders reminded Americans that our nation was founded by “religious people” (as noted in the Declaration of Independence) with monotheistic, Judeo-Christian principles and precepts:

“Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.” (Ps. 33:12)

Soon, a new sense of a national conscience and patriotism prompted Congress to pass a bill adding the words “under God” to the Pledge of Allegiance. President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed it into law on Flag Day, June 14, 1954.

Shortly, legislation to add the motto “In God We Trust” to our currency (already existent on our coins) was passed in 1955; and in 1956 the unofficial national motto “E Pluribus Unum” (out of many, one) was changed when “In God We Trust” was officially adopted.

Collectively, these measures (less than eight decades ago) form a public testament to a shared religious ethos, backed by the First Amendment to our Constitution, which provided “free expression” of religious freedoms and practices. The Supreme Court has even acknowledged an American “civil religion,” which allows public expressions of non-sectarian religious faith in certain public, ceremonial events.

Jesus told His disciples to give to Caesar the recognition due him and to God the allegiance due Him. So, in settings where a “civil religion” might call for a patriotic allegiance, the national pledge seems appropriate and even desirable.

But, as “a religious person” and follower of Jesus Christ, I also want to teach my grandchildren a more personal expression of my devotion to God, with this heartfelt recitation:

I Pledge Allegiance to the Christian flag, and to the Savior for whose kingdom it stands. One Savior, crucified, risen and coming again, with life and liberty for all who believe.

U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team Facing Scrutiny after Record Win against Thailand

| Sports | June 13, 2019

by Diego Marquez

The U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team is in some hot water after defeating Thailand 13-0 in the first match of group play in the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup on Tuesday.

Defeating Thailand by such a huge margin, the USWNT has been awarded the title of the biggest blowout in the tournament’s history. Alex Morgan tied the tournaments record with five goals, Rose Lavelle and Samantha Mewis each added two goals each while Lindsey Horgan, Megan Rapinoe, Carli Lloyd and Mallory Pugh also contributed with a goal of their own on this historic night.

What people took offense to was the manner and fashion that the U.S. Women celebrated even after they had the game in hand. It became evident as Twitter blew up after Rapinoe’s celebration after scoring the ninth goal.

“0.0 problem with the score line as this is THE tournament BUT celebrating goals (like #9) leaves a sour taste in my mouth like many of you. Curious to see if anyone apologizes for this postgame. #USWNT #FIFAWWC,” tweeted Taylor Twellman, an ESPN soccer analyst and former U.S. men’s national team player.

“I would tone down the celebration on the 9th goal, but that’s just me,” tweeted Max Bretos, an ESPN analyst and the play-by-play announcer for LAFC.

Entering the tournament, the U.S. Women won six straight matches and were 7-1-2 overall in 2019, and according to head coach Jill Ellis didn’t want to let up because it would be disrespectful to their opponent. The previous World Cup margin of victory was in 2007 when Germany defeated Argentina 11-0.

The USWNT continue­­s group play against Chile at 9 a.m. on Sunday on FOX.

Live Music

| Entertainment | June 13, 2019

June 14, Fri
6–9pm Wolf Creek Brewery The Storyteller band Live music
6–10pm Luther St area City’s Summer Bash Live music
7–9pm Rock Inn Nathan on piano Piano
7–9:30p Val. Blues & Jazz concerts The Delgado Brothers Val. Mall
7–10pm Hyatt Valencia Vinyl Gypsies Classic rock
8–11pm Wine 661 Bill Cinque & friends Classic rock
8–11:30p Vincent Hill Station Wildside band Cover rock
9–12m Newhall Press Room Carlos Lopez Live music
9–12m Salt Creek Grille Lance Allyn Classic covers
9–1am Doc’s Inn Frankly Speaking Rock classics
June 15, Sat
12n–7p Wolf Creek Brewery Rotary Car Show & Catch 22 Rock
6–10pm Vincent Hill Station Sweetwater Gentlemen Bluegrass
7:30–10p Vincenzo’s Newhall The Grateful Dudes Bluegrass
8–10pm Double Trouble Wines 1969 Rock Band Classic rock
8–11pm Wine 661 Sean Hughes Covers & orig
8–12m VFW 6885 Big Coyote Country
9–12m Salt Creek Grille Galo Pacheco Classic rock
9–12m Newhall Press Room Mike Fitzgerald & Jon LaCroix music
9–12m Rock Inn (Lake Hughes) Apache Rose band Live music
June 16, Sun
10a–2p Saugus Swap meet Urban Soul Live music
12n–6p Wolf Creek Brewery Blues & Brews Steve Jones
3–7pm Vincent Hill Moldy Marvin’s open mic Various
5–9pm Amer Legion Newhall Thom Teresi hosts Jazz Jam
5–9pm VFW 6885 Servants of Soul Classic rock
7–10pm Backyard Grub & Brews The Saloonatics Cover rock
June 18, Tues
6–9:30p Wolf Creek Brewery Community Pints night Live music
7–10pm Bergie’s steakhouse Orlove, Keller & Morgan Blues mix
June 19, Wed
6–9pm Route 66 Classic Grill Various bands Live music
June 20, Thur
6 – 9pm Tomato Joe’s Cyn Ctry Various bands Live music
6:30–9p Brewery Draconum Ben Bostick Country
7–10pm Bergie’s steakhouse Alan Wright band Blues n rock
7–10pm Old Town Newhall, Senses! Coney Island theme Live music
June 21, Fri
6–9pm Wolf Creek Brewery Various bands Live music
7–9pm Rock Inn Nathan on piano Piano
7–9:30p Val. Blues & Jazz concerts Jim Gustin & Truth Jones Val. Mall
8–11pm Wine 661 Bill Cinque & friends Classic rock
8–11:30p Vincent Hill Station Overdrive on the patio Classic rock

City Launches Community Survey To Inform Parks And Recreation Work Plan

| Community | June 13, 2019

In an effort to update the Parks, Recreation and Open Space Master Plan to a fluid Work Plan, the City of Santa Clarita has partnered with True North Research, Inc., to conduct a community survey soliciting feedback and information about the programs and services the city offers. The results of the survey will inform the Parks and Recreation Work Plan, which will then be integrated into the city’s next comprehensive strategic plan.

The community survey will measure residents’ satisfaction, priorities and concerns as they relate to parks and recreation opportunities in the City of Santa Clarita. A random sample of city residents will be invited to participate in the survey via mailed information, email invitation or telephone call. Residents who may be selected to participate are asked to please complete the survey at their earliest convenience.

Some residents may have already received an emailed link to participate in the community survey. This email, from SantaClarita@surveynetwork.com, was sent from a trusted source and should be treated as legitimate.

For more information about the City of Santa Clarita’s Parks and Recreation Work Plan or the ongoing community survey, contact (661) 284-1407.

Valencia Nanoscience Students Take 2nd in ‘Shark Tank’ Competition

| Community | June 13, 2019

Two different teams from Valencia High School’s Honors Nanoscience class competed in the finals of the California NanoSystems Institute’s third annual Nanosystems Competition, with one team awarded second place.

In what was a “Shark Tank” style of competition, middle and high school students from across Southern California pitched their cutting-edge nanoscience-based business ideas to a panel of judges who were venture capitalists, entrepreneurs and UCLA faculty and staff. The students were required to not only explain the science behind their idea but to also present their business plan to bring their idea to market.

Valencia students Brock Bowers, Lauren Chen, Isabelle Goralsky and Nicholas Lottermoser claimed second place and $1,000 with their idea “UltraClear,” a microplastic filter for drinking water marketed to millennial parents and health conscious consumers.

The second team of Cody Aung, Andre Baghdassarian, Noah Besina and Makayla Vicente pitched their idea called “CellShock,” a sheer thickening fluid case to better protect valuable electronics like phones, laptops, and medical devices.

“This competition provides a unique opportunity for my Nanoscience students to apply their imagination, scientific knowledge, communication skills, and business principles in a high stakes real world context,” said Daniella Duran, teacher of the Honors Nanscience class from which the teams were created. “To prepare we partnered with Mr. Mifflin’s entrepreneurship class to get feedback on the business aspects before the final pitch which helped students see the value in cross curricular collaboration. The chance to pitch an idea to a venture capitalist is an opportunity most of us adults never get, which makes it so exciting.”

Teams began this process back in January when they submitted a 450-word abstract summarizing the need that was being filled, the current state of the art for the need, and their new nanotechnology-based solution idea. Ten teams were then selected to participate in a kickoff event the following month at UCLA to meet their graduate student mentors and get a crash course in Design Thinking.

Carousel Ranch to Host 23rd Annual Dinner, Auction, and Children’s Riding Demonstration August 24

| Community | June 13, 2019

With the general invitation mailing for Carousel Ranch 23rd Annual Dinner, Auction, and Children’s Riding Demonstration set to hit mailboxes this week, organizers confirmed they are already two-thirds of the way to a sold-out event. The event, presented by Princess Cruises Community Foundation, will be held on Saturday, August 24, 2019 starting at 6 p.m. on the grounds of Carousel Ranch located at 34289 Rocking Horse Road in Agua Dulce.

“It is both amazing and overwhelming how this event has grown to what it has become today, and especially for the support we receive from the community for our kids and the work that we do,” said Denise Redmond, executive director of Carousel Ranch. “Each year we sell out earlier than previous years, which is testimony to the support and encouragement we are so fortunate to receive toward fulfilling our mission.”

Since 1997, the Ranch has provided equestrian therapy for children with disabilities. The nonprofit added its Ready-to-Work vocational training program three years ago for young adults with special needs.

For this year’s Heart of the West event, over 420 seats have been reserved to date, out of a maximum 650 seat capacity. “Our sponsor list continues to grow,” said Redmond.

“This is where the magic happens,” Carousel Ranch Board President Marianne Cederlind said, referring to the Ranch property that hosts the annual event on its vast grounds. “The camaraderies of the people who attend create a unique opportunity for the community to gather, witness first-hand the transformative potential of equestrian therapy, and empower guests with the capacity to open their hearts to the children of Carousel Ranch.”

The evening begins by showcasing four student horseback demonstrations in the outside arena area. “Our students inspire me to be a better person,” said Cederlind. “To witness the sheer joy equestrian therapy brings to their lives despite the incredible personal challenges they face puts my own life into perspective.”

“Heart of the West is a magical evening with the excitement of fabulous live and silent auctions, great food, music, line-dancing and, most important, a demonstration by the kids that we have all come together to support,” Cederlind said. “These beautiful children serve to remind us all that anything is possible.”

A dinner catered by Salt Creek Grille will be served during a live auction, and more than 250 silent auction items will be available for bid. The festivities continue after dinner as guests experience “Heart of the West After Dark” in the Western Town, which features a live band, dancing and casino games.

Sponsorship opportunities range from $375 to $8,000; individual tickets are priced at $100 for general seating and $200 for VIP seating. Guests are encouraged to reserve early. Visit www.carouselranch.org for more information or call 661-268-8010.

Summer Beach Bus Service Returns

| Community | June 13, 2019

With the summer season right around the corner, residents can board Santa Clarita Transit’s annual Summer Beach Bus with service to Santa Monica on Saturdays and Sundays. Santa Clarita Transit is excited to bring back the popular service that allows residents to visit the beach using the city’s air-conditioned commuter express buses through Sunday, September 1.

Summer Beach Bus fares are $3.00 each way for children and adults and $1.50 each way for Senior Citizens and persons with disabilities. Riders may pay using the Token Transit mobile app, stored value on their TAP card or exact cash. Monthly passes will not be accepted.

Buses will depart at approximately 8:40 a.m. and return at 4:30 p.m., ensuring a full day of beach activities without the stress of driving on the freeway and finding parking.

Two bus routes will depart each Saturday and Sunday from various stops in Santa Clarita and take residents to the Santa Monica Pier. Shuttle departure stops include:

Canyon Country Park
Soledad Canyon Road and Solamint Drive
Soledad Canyon Road and Shangri-La Drive
Via Princessa Metrolink Station
McBean Regional Transit Center
Railroad Avenue and 15th Street
Newhall Metrolink Station
Newhall Avenue and Valle Del Oro
Newhall Avenue and Sierra Highway

Travelers may bring their beach chairs, coolers and surfboards. For more information on Summer Beach Bus routes and times, visit SantaClaritaTransit.com.

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