Another busy week ahead of us in Oakland. Here are some meetings and events worth checking out:
Monday, February 23rd – East Bay Young Dems Meeting
Join the East Bay Young Dems for our first general meeting of 2009. We’ll be introducing the club’s NEW initiatives to engage more young adults into the political process, hold our elected officials accountable, increase our online presence, and continue to celebrate our successes with style. At this meeting, we’ll also be electing our new club Treasurer. The meeting will be from 6:15-8:00pm at Spud’s Pizza, 3290 Adeline Street (at Alcatraz) in Berkeley. The Executive Committee will convene after the general membership meeting. All are welcome to stay and participate.
Tuesday, February 24th – Walk Oakland Bike Oakland Meeting
Help put the “Walk” in WOBO! At last month’s meeting (which saw our biggest volunteer turnout yet) we told you all about our priority bike campaign. Apparently you liked what you heard, because we got tons of sign-ups up to help with Broadway bike counts, outreach at community events (like to Bike to the Movies Night) and collecting signatures from businesses in support of the campaign. At this month’s general meeting, we’re asking for your help identifying WOBO’s next pedestrian campaign. Come to this Tuesday’s general meeting – at a new location this month: 2301 Broadway, Suite B – with your top ideas for how WOBO can make walking in Oakland safer and more inviting! Snacks will be served. The meeting will be from 6:30-8:30pm at Bay Area Wilderness Training, 2301 Broadway, Suite B – enter on 23rd Street.
Wednesday, February 25th – MTC Hearing on Use of Stimulus Funds
The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) is proposing spending $70 million of new federal economic recovery funding on an “Oakland Airport Connector,” which even BART acknowledges is nowhere near “shovel ready.” This $70 million is urgently needed RIGHT NOW to keep existing local transit agencies from imminent service cuts and fare hikes. If you ride BART, AC Transit or any transit in the Bay Area, we need you to join us in fighting service cuts and fare hikes! Join us on Thursday, Feb. 25th at 10am at MTC (101 8th St., across from Lake Merritt BART) in telling MTC to direct new funding to critical public transit needs, not the costly Oakland Airporter.
For further info on this issue, check out V Smoothe’s article at OakBook. Also, look for a lengthier post here tomorrow (Monday) about this MTC hearing.
Thursday, February 26th – Charter Schools: A Step Forward or Backward for Public Education – CANCELED
UPDATE: This event has been canceled. You can find out why at NovoMetro.
Charter schools are a hot topic in Oakland, and this debate will be a face off between pponents and advocates of charter schools. Arguing that charter schools are part of a new Jim Crow system of education that forces an increasing number of black and Latino students into separate, inferior schools will be Shanta Driver and Yvette Felarca, representatives of the civil rights group Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, Integration and Immigrant Rights and Fight for Equality by Any Means Necessary (BAMN). Arguing that charter schools provide students with an education to enhance their academic skills in order to compete and be productive members of society will be Ben Chavis, founder of the American Indian Public Charter School in Oakland, and Janet Roberts, current Principal of the American Indian Charter School. Oakland Unified School Board Director Chris Dobbins will be moderating the event. The public is invited to attend and will have ample opportunities to pose questions to the speakers in what is sure to be a hotly contested debate. The debate will take place at 5pm in the OUSD Administration Building, Hunter Hall, 1025 Second Avenue.
Thursday, February 26th – The Strength in Debate Series Part 1: Global Warming & Environmental Justice
The Bay Area Urban Debate League (BAUDL) and Standing To Represent Our Next Generation (STRONG) will host the first public debate event in the Strength In Debate Series, featuring the most talented orators in Oakland high schools. The purpose of the Strength in Debate Series is to showcase the exceptional talent of these students and to reward their dedication and commitment to argument and advocacy. Eight Oakland high school students will face off to debate about engaging and controversial issues and to propose solutions to such important problems as global warming and urban decay. The evening promises to be both exciting and informative — these young people have a lot to tell us about urgent matters and they are eager to do so. The debate will be held from 7:00-8:30pm at St. Sugustine’s Episcopalian Church, 529 29th Street.