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Old 06-26-2003, 10:12 PM   #1
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No Mexicans on Our Beach! U2Bama posted a thread a while back....

about a local politician making inappropriate remarks.

Well, we have a situation here that won't go away.
Quote:

Councilman opposes grass areas on beach

Corona del Mar's Dick Nichols says he doesn't want 'Mexicans' using those areas all day.

June Casagrande
Daily Pilot

June 18, 2003

NEWPORT BEACH As City Council members prepare to hear a proposal for improvements at Corona del Mar State Beach, Councilman Dick Nichols on Tuesday said he opposes adding more grassy areas to the beach in part because "Mexicans" dominate these areas.

"With grass we usually get Mexicans coming in there early in the morning and they claim it as theirs and it becomes their personal, private grounds all day," Nichols said in a phone interview.

The comment was just one of many points the councilman made as he explained his opposition to the proposed improvements, but it is the one that most troubled his colleagues.

"This concerns me," Mayor Steve Bromberg said. "I'm very bothered because this is not the way the people of Newport Beach are. The people of Newport Beach are very progressive and it's indeed unfortunate if we have an elected official spewing what might be interpreted as a racial epithet."

John Heffernan, who like Nichols was supported in his council run by the city's controlled-growth Greenlight movement, also said he disapproved of the comment.

"When you're a public official, you can't make comments that are racially toned," Heffernan said. "What you say is taken far differently because you're a public official."

Greenlight officials also quickly distanced themselves from Nichol's comments.

"We are troubled by Dr. Nichol's alleged quote," said Greenlight spokesman Phil Arst. "He was endorsed by Greenlight because of his long record of community service as opposed to that of his principal opponent. Greenlight is committed to a better quality of life in Newport Beach and while we stand behind the reasons for our endorsement of Dr. Nichols as an insightful and hard-working community activist, who has been making a difference in speaking up for the residents, we are sorely disappointed with his comment."

It's the second time that Nichols used the word "Mexican" in a way that raised concerns. At the Oct. 22, 2002 City Council meeting, Nichols referred to a motorist as a Mexican, though he did not know the man, his country of origin or citizenship.

Nichols made the more recent comment while discussing details of the beach improvement plan that will be heard at an upcoming City Council meeting.

In addition to expanded grassy areas, Nichols said he also opposes plans to build added facilities for lifeguards because they will take up more of the sand area than is necessary for public safety.

Fire Chief Tim Riley said that the fire department, which oversees the lifeguards, supports the improved lifeguard facilities because they will allow for a higher level of safety in a beach area that's difficult to serve because the harbor entrance separates Corona del Mar from most of the beach area the city lifeguards patrol.

Better amenities are needed there because of this access issue, he said.
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Old 06-26-2003, 10:17 PM   #2
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oh no not those dirty mexicans. now i will be around those beaches in july, maybe i should go do my part and pollute the beaches with my mexican-american self.
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Old 06-26-2003, 10:29 PM   #3
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SenoritaVeletDress,


Stay OFF the grass!

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Old 06-26-2003, 10:46 PM   #4
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And no more lifeguard facilities because we don't want to lose sand area? He probably never goes to the beach.


Loser
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Old 06-27-2003, 06:51 AM   #5
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wink

Quote:
Originally posted by deep
SenoritaVeletDress,


Stay OFF the grass!

*does a very dirty mexican hat dance with joy and glee on the forbidden grass*
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Old 06-27-2003, 10:20 AM   #6
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This guy sounds like a real Neanderthal. The ironic thing is that the name of the beach is Spanish! My sister's boyfriend is Mexican. I don't like this guy's attitude.
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Old 06-27-2003, 11:32 AM   #7
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stupid
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Old 06-27-2003, 01:12 PM   #8
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Who said racism doens't exist anymore?
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Old 06-27-2003, 01:37 PM   #9
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And he just digs himself in a little deeper...

Quote:
Nichols cant quite pull foot out of his mouth


By GORDON DILLOW
The Orange County Register


We went 'round and 'round and over and over it. But for the life of him, Newport Beach City Councilman Richard Nichols still couldn't seem to understand why he's in such big trouble.

Nichols is the guy who's in hot water for his recent comment about "Mexicans." Specifically, in an interview with a local newspaper about plans to add more grassy areas to a local beach, Nichols said this:

"With grass, we usually get Mexicans coming in there early in the morning, and they claim it as theirs and it becomes their personal, private grounds all day."

As you might imagine, Nichols, who is white, was widely denounced for making a racist remark. His council colleagues want him to resign, there's talk of a recall against him, he's been hounded by reporters.

And through it all, Nichols, 63, still doesn't understand why people are mad at him.

"I'm not a racist," he told me. "I was just making an observation. It wasn't a racial slur. I was just making a statement. You ought to be able to make a statement."

Well, the education of fledgling politicians - Nichols has only been on the council since November - isn't really my job. But Nichols seemed so genuinely baffled, so utterly at a loss, that I felt like I had to try.

No, I said, there isn't anything inherently racist about the word "Mexican" when referring to citizens of Mexico; it's like calling citizens of Canada "Canadians." But I still thought he had screwed up.

After all, being of Mexican descent doesn't mean you're not an American. And not all Hispanics are of Mexican descent, and it's uncivil and impolite to suggest they are. For example, I'm of European descent but that doesn't mean I want to be called a Frenchman.

And if Mr. Nichols wanted to make an argument about illegal immigrants overusing public facilities, fine, it's a legitimate issue. But absent a documents check, who's to know whether these alleged grass-hoggers are Mexicans or Spanish-speaking Americans or immigrants from Poland?

But Nichols doesn't get it.

Yes, he repeated an earlier statement that he probably should have said "people" instead of "Mexicans." But then he went on to say, "What I was trying to convey was that the people we've seen (monopolizing the grass) are predominately old-time residents who happen to be of Mexican nationality."

Stop it, Dick. You aren't making it better.

Now, as I've said before in this space, there is a double standard of racial outrage in this country. White guys seem to get in a lot more trouble for alleged racist remarks than anybody else. And allegations of racism are thrown about far too freely.

So I'm certainly not going to join the chorus that's calling Nichols a racist. Racism is more a matter of what's in your heart than what comes out of your mouth - and I wouldn't presume to know what's in his heart.

But I do know this much: Politeness and civility in racial issues are important.

And somewhere between your heart and your mouth, you should always try to get your brain involved.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Gordon Dillow may be reached at (714) 796-7953 or by e-mail at GLDillow@aol.com.
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Old 06-27-2003, 01:49 PM   #10
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lol. i'm sorry to laugh, but it is sorta funny and sad at the same time.
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Old 06-27-2003, 04:27 PM   #11
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omg that is just too funny. I say "funny" because he is so obviously clueless about what he said.

dork.

]
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Old 06-27-2003, 06:26 PM   #12
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It is a bit funny, his days are numbered.

Quote:
Mayor suggests that Nichols resign
Steve Bromberg says if his colleague has problems with minorities, it's not representative of the city.

June Casagrande
Daily Pilot

June 19, 2003

NEWPORT BEACH Mayor Steve Bromberg said Wednesday that Councilman Dick Nichols should consider stepping down from the council in the wake of Nichols' comments about people he identifies as Mexicans using the beach. But Nichols on Wednesday vigorously defended his statement.

"If Mr. Nichols' comments about specific minorities reflect the way he truly feels, he should consider resigning as councilman because that's not truly representative of the best interests of this community," Bromberg said.

Nichols had said during a phone interview Tuesday that he opposes some of the renovations proposed for Corona del Mar State Beach, including expanding the grass areas.

"With grass, we usually get Mexicans coming in there early in the morning, and they claim it as theirs, and it becomes their personal, private grounds all day," Nichols said Tuesday.

In a phone interview from a Santa Ana hospital where he is being treated for an infection in his leg, Nichols on Wednesday defended the previous day's comment and said that it had been taken out of context.

"Why don't you go down there and take a survey and see what fraction of the people on the weekends are from where? You're going to see a predominance of people that don't live in the area," Nichols said Wednesday. "My statement was honest. It doesn't say I'm discriminating against them. Where the hell am I in any way discriminating or being a bigot by making a statement that is blatantly true?"

Some of his colleagues criticized Nichols' comment, but none has publicly accused him of discrimination or of being a bigot.

Nichols pointed out that the comment was just one of about 25 points he had made in an extended phone interview on Corona del Mar State Beach improvements. He said that the fallout over his comment amounted to political correctness.

"This is P.C.," he said. "Evidently, if you use one of these special words, you've done a no-no and you've already been fired from office if you're a Republican. If you're a Democrat, you can join the Ku Klux Klan, and not a thing happens to you."

Rusty Kennedy, who heads the county's Human Relations Commission, was speaking to the Newport-Mesa Interfaith Council at the Orange Coast Unitarian Universalist Church in Costa Mesa on Wednesday. He found Nichols' comments surprising.

"It is hard to believe that someone in a position like that would say something so insensitive," Kennedy said. "He should apologize."

Last week, Nichols' colleagues debated censuring him for a comment he made at a Planning Commission meeting. At that meeting, Nichols told Planning Commissioners that he thought their opposition to a variance request was illogical and unfair.

"It doesn't look good," Nichols said at that meeting. "It looks like you're taking money for this one."

Nichols apologized for the remark, and colleagues ultimately dropped the matter.

In October, Nichols drew heat from a community member for describing a motorist as a "Mexican" in a televised council meeting, even though Nichols did not know the man, his nationality or whether he was a U.S. citizen.
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Old 06-28-2003, 10:24 PM   #13
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It can be seen as funny, but I'm sure for the "mexicans" is a very serious issue, racism is heavy in those areas, and yes is very sad.
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Old 06-29-2003, 01:02 AM   #14
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Quote:
"Why don't you go down there and take a survey and see what fraction of the people on the weekends are from where? You're going to see a predominance of people that don't live in the area," Nichols said Wednesday.


Nichols is upset because South Orange County's affluent white enclave known as Corona Del Mar is being "invaded" by non-whites. Hmmm. Last I checked, CDM is a state beach. It's not Malibu Colony. Everyone is entitled to enjoy it.

I say the presence at Corona of beach-goers who happen to be hispanic or any other ethnicity is a good thing. South O.C. needs some color splashed onto its whiteness.


http://www.beachcalifornia.com/cdm.html
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Old 06-29-2003, 10:07 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by verte76
... The ironic thing is that the name of the beach is Spanish!

i know what a fucking idiot! he might as well change the name of the beach to an anglo name to satisfy his racist views.
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Old 06-29-2003, 10:09 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally posted by pub crawler



I say the presence at Corona of beach-goers who happen to be hispanic or any other ethnicity is a good thing. South O.C. needs some color splashed onto its whiteness.


[/B]
i can give it a much needed splash. *wonders if this beach is near the O.C airport*
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Old 06-29-2003, 11:22 AM   #17
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wink

Not too far...

edit: Well I can't link to mapquest but it's basically a 30 minute drive (though mapquest says 10 mins) down Macarthur Blvd from the airport to the beach.
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Old 06-29-2003, 02:13 PM   #18
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Give it fifteen minutes tops - right through my neighborhood.


*ponders Ms. I-Lo gracing our beaches*
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Old 06-29-2003, 02:33 PM   #19
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It is a really short drive about 10 minutes. We have pretty good traffic circulation management in our planning.



I know all seven council members and the other six have very publicly called on him to resign. The other council members find these remarks extremely offensive. They are pretty progressive on social issues like this.


There have been dozens of articles in the papers, here is one more.


Quote:
Councilman Visits Archie Bunker Dimension to Justify Comments

Steve Lopez



At the risk of being deported, I bought a beach chair Wednesday at a drugstore on Coast Highway in Newport Beach, then went to the home of a councilman who made barbed remarks about all the Mexicans at Corona del Mar State Beach.

Dick Nichols wasn't home. He's in the hospital with a leg infection. But I called on my cell phone to let him know a guy named Lopez was camped out on his front lawn.

I thought it might send him into shock, but Nichols chuckled and said I could stay in his yard if I liked. He chatted for half an hour or so, and from my end, it got more and more like an episode of "The Twilight Zone."

Nichols claimed his comments in the Daily Pilot were taken out of context, which the reporter denied to me in great detail. The story said he opposed expanding grassy areas at the beach because: "With grass we usually get Mexicans coming in there early in the morning and they claim it as theirs and it becomes their personal, private ground all day."

But in defending himself to me, Nichols kept pulling Archie Bunkers.

He repeatedly referred to all Latinos as "Mexicans" or "non-locals." He asked if I was born "in this country or in Mexico." He claimed he had witnessed a car accident staged by a couple of "Mexicans" running an insurance scam. And he lamented the "political correctness" that got U.S. Sen. Trent Lott in hot water for lauding Strom Thurmond's days as a segregationist.

I was worried he might ask me to mow his knee-high grass while I was there, and maybe wash his car.

Nichols had an American flag in the yard and a banner that said, "Let Freedom Ring." Speaking of freedom, I respect everyone's right to speak their mind. If not for the likes of Nichols letting loose now and then, we'd have to constantly remind ourselves why we have civil rights attorneys.

But in a town that has former NBA star Dennis Rodman running around like a goofball, I don't understand why anyone would have a problem with "Mexicans" at the beach.

By coincidence, Nichols made his comments to me on the same day the Census Bureau announced that Latinos had surpassed African Americans to become the largest minority group in the U.S. The total number of Latinos hit 38.8 million last year, and could reach 60 million by the year 2020.

There's no telling what percentage of that population will end up crowding Dick Nichols at Corona del Mar State Beach, because California is way ahead of the national curve. Many moons ago, Latinos became the largest minority in this state, and they account for nearly a third of the population today.

Some people, obviously, don't like it, which is their prerogative. But if you fall into that group, you might want to consider moving to another state.

In my chat with Nichols, I explained that there happen to be Latino countries other than Mexico, and a guy named Lopez might conceivably trace his roots to Spain. Not that Spaniard Americans are any less likely to end up on "his" beach.

The councilman gave me a clue as to where he was coming from. He wanted to know if I thought illegal aliens ought to be able to pour across the border and be automatically guaranteed every right enjoyed by those of us who were born here.

As a matter of fact, no. I've written about the ravages of overpopulation and the need for stricter immigration control, and I've taken some heat for it.

But Latinos don't come to California to freeload. They come here to better their lives. Most of them work harder than I ever have. They make a contribution, and they become citizens too. And when they take a day off and go swimming at a state beach maintained with their tax dollars, they don't need some flat-footed coot asking their business.

Nichols told me to go see for myself all the "Mexicans" and "non-locals" who flock to the beach he's been going to for 30 years. I'm not sure how you can be a "non-local" at a state beach. But I did as he suggested, walked up to the very first Latino family I saw and introduced myself.

Otilia Hurtado was making sandwiches for her husband, Valente, 48, his brother, and their two families. They told me to please help myself at a neat little spread of lunch meats and fixins.

Otilia and Valente used to live in Costa Mesa, but moved to Palm Springs 14 years ago, where he works as banquet captain at the Hilton. Still, they've come to this same beach once or twice a year for two decades.

"It's a family tradition," Valente said. "We've been coming here since my son Cesar there was 2. He's 25 now."

Cesar looked at the headline in the local paper: "Corona del Mar's Dick Nichols says he doesn't want Mexicans using those areas all day."

Cesar seemed to think it was a joke. When he found out otherwise, he said, "That's messed up." Valente Hurtado said they've never had a problem at the beach, but now he wonders if people have been looking at them as if they don't belong.

Only one that we know of.

When lunch was ready, several of the Hurtado children and grandchildren were playing nearby with Boogie boards and beach balls. You've never seen "Mexicans" look more all-American.

*

Steve Lopez writes Sunday, Wednesday and Friday. Reach
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Old 06-29-2003, 04:04 PM   #20
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I wouldn't want this representing me. Ugh.
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