A critical thinking course at Dos Pueblos High became the latest local casualty of the nation’s culture war, as religious zealots this week browbeat SB school officials into obliging ecclesiastical dogma over secular education.
Callie Fausey, the Independent’s crack schools reporter, returned to Newsmakers TV on Friday, to detail her story of how Catholicism won out over civics in the SB Unified School District: under religious pressure and legal threats, educators agreed to remove a famous 1987 photograph by the artist Andres Serrano, known as “Immersion (Piss Christ)," from discussion in an advanced studies course called (checks notes) “Theory of Knowledge.”
Because, God knows, we can’t have college-level students thinking for themselves about the nature of art.
It’s a big week for weird Indy stories, as Ryan P. Cruz recounts his scoop about who’s behind the first proposed housing development in Santa Barbara under the state-mandated, so-called “Builders Remedy,” which usurps local control over housing issues; it’s a strange tale about an L.A. couple with a, um, colorful history (think: defenestrated liposuction specialist meets cannabis queen, hatches scheme for using human fat to fuel cars before lurching into bankruptcy and moving to Bali) showing up in our idyllic burg to try to cash in on Sacramento’s build-baby-build frenzy.
Enhancing the episode's tabloid theme, KEYT digital news honcho Lily Dallow joins the gang to break down a new study, by oceanographic researchers at CSU Long Beach, that maps the incidence of great white sharks on the California coast. They learned that Carpinteria, which you would think already has enough problems with that whole pot thing, is one of two locales with the highest population of baby sharks (for those keeping score at home “Shark Week 2023 airs July 11-18 on the Discovery Channel - which reminds us of an old song).
And Newsmakers mainstay Josh Molina enlivens the news-of-the-weird parade, going behind the scenes on that politically juicy eruption at SB City Hall of fiery and unexpected declamation and discourse over the red ink spilling into this year’s budget, a civic soap opera spectacle that, in the end, led to the fiscal deliverance of the endangered Monroe after-school program and the imperiled public Library (Newsmakers gets results).
Plus: Hilda Maldonado cleans up a $950,000 scandal left by her predecessor; an update on this year’s endearing Fiesta Grand Marshal; Oscar visits “Santa Barbara Talks” – and, beginning of the end for parklets?
All this, right now, right here on Newsmakers TV.
Watch the latest episode via YouTube below or by clicking through this link. The podcast version is here. The show airs on TVSB, Cox Cable Channel 17, at 8 p.m. on weekdays and at 9 a.m. on weekends. KCSB, 91.9 FM, broadcasts the program on Mondays at 5:30 p.m.