Contact Form

    News Details

    Santa Ana takes pointless stand on Middle East policy
    • March 13, 2024

    Santa Ana is facing a number of serious problems related to its budget and its provision of public services, yet that hasn’t stopped the City Council from spending its time debating divisive and symbolic issues that are outside its control. After boisterous public meetings, the council recently voted for a resolution calling for a permanent ceasefire in Israel and Gaza.

    The council also called on Hamas to release Israeli hostages, for the recognition of Israel’s right to exist and for a two-state solution. After introducing the resolution, Councilmember Benjamin Vazquez said “it is our duty to speak up in the times of injustice.”

    Councilmembers Jessie Lopez, Johnathan Hernandez and Thai Viet Phan voted yes. Mayor Valerie Amezcua voted no. The only sensible response came from Councilmembers Phil Becerra and David Penaloza, who stepped out before the circus started.

    There’s little justification for performative local policy making. The Israeli-Gaza war is upsetting and many Santa Ana residents have connections in that region and deep-seated emotions about the war. But no one in the Middle East cares what Santa Ana’s council believes. There’s nothing to be gained by turning council meetings into a foreign-policy debating society with packed chambers and chanting – and law enforcement on alert.

    Related Articles

    Opinion |

    Why are American progressives silent after reports of Hamas’ rape, sexual torture of Israelis?

    Opinion |

    Single-payer pipe dream is dead in California, and that’s a good thing

    Opinion |

    San Francisco’s rightward turn is a warning for progressives

    Opinion |

    The left has a new goal: degrowth!

    Opinion |

    California’s secretive approach to lawmaking could use some sunshine

    Back to reality. City officials don’t know how they are going to backfill 22 percent of their annual budget when a voter-approved sales tax decreases in five years, per news reports. Filling that $30 million shortfall without slashing services will require advance planning.

    Recent news reports also note the city is looking at doubling street-cleaning fees or cutting service because of a new statewide wage mandate.

    Cities that can’t figure out how to keep their streets clean – or clear out homeless encampments – ought to focus attention at home. Santa Ana isn’t the only city with an outsized sense of its international influence, as other OC cities have weighed in on the matter. But that doesn’t justify this waste of time.

    Regardless of their views on the Middle East, residents are united in wanting the budget balanced and the streets clean.

    ​ Orange County Register