Category Archives: Commentary

’97 Giants left lasting legacy

Before Brian Johnson won the Giants’ biggest game of the 90s, Rod Beck saved it. And together the 1997 Giants put San Francisco on the baseball map in a way…

Moderate Obama deserves GOP gratitude

With Inauguration Day behind us, Republicans at last can embrace a president who promotes the ideals of their party: Barack Obama. Though Republicans reviled, opposed and obstructed him for eight…

Be proud of Kap

Colin Kaepernick and the 49ers gave their fans a long-awaited gift on Christmas Eve: a rousing, comeback win over the Los Angeles Rams to snap their 13-game losing streak. The…

Roust the rebels from our mountains

“May God have mercy on Bobby Lee, for I will have none,” decreed Union General Joe Hooker during the Civil War. His druthers are my druthers. Confederates have invaded the…

How the other half lives in Yosemite

When my wife and I carried our bags down the red carpet into a plush lobby, I could still hardly believe it. In all the years we had visited Yosemite,…

Supreme Court shows its value in marriage rulings

Like a starting pistol, the buzzer sounded at 10 a.m. and nine robed justices entered the chamber. Chief Justice John Roberts immediately called on his colleagues to announce the court’s…

Super Bowl XLVII: Niners lose but hospitality wins

NEW ORLEANS – Looks like I should have paid that street magician who promised to fix the game with a spell, but though the Niners lost the Super Bowl, the…

Some Republican ideas won in 2012

President Obama’s re-election and the Democrats’ generally good showing at the polls have caused the GOP a good deal of despair and anguish. But Republicans should take heart that many…

Wilson: great player, better person

Giants of recent glory years are even better people than they are players, General Manager Brian Sabean says. That’s certainly true of Brian Wilson, the newest former Giant, who was,…

Zito at the Bat

The outlook wasn’t brilliant as the Giants left the Bay. They trailed the Reds by two games in Division Series play. But they rallied in game three; in game four…

Don’t fall for deceptive Prop. 32

Coming soon to California schools near you: larger classes, fewer courses, and an end to sports and arts programs. All of this and much worse could come to pass after…

True Tea Party endorses President Obama

Tea Party activists have made history in recent years and our movement will continue to shape the nation’s future. To fully promote our conservative principles, the True Tea Party wishes…

Hayashi interview provides teachable moment

Kids love field trips and this one proved more memorable than most. Strange as it was, an interview with Assemblywoman Mary Hayashi produced interesting lessons for all involved. Four Castro…

Beware Death Eaters, tea partiers and other extremists

Lord Voldemort killed Harry Potter’s parents and tried, many times, to slay him. Draco Malfoy only broke Harry’s nose and the two eventually made up. There’s a lesson here for…

Help win education’s STAR Wars

Forcing Carl to focus through a week of STAR testing was harder than beating Darth Vader in a light saber duel. “Do I have to take the test?” Carl moaned….

How to love your job

Noelia could always make a teacher’s day, so I was glad to do the same for her. A 17-year-old who moved to the country just recently, she told me she…

“Don’t ask” repeal offers hope for greater equality

Rousing hymns, stirring prayers, a candlelight procession and blissful smiles filled one of the most beautiful weddings I’ve ever attended. Happiness permeated the recent ceremony in Oakland  for my wife’s…

Before winning golden trophy, Giants gave golden memories

I’ve felt out of sync since the World Series ended, like a hitter swinging late at a fastball. Now that my pulse has finally slowed from a month of heart…

This crazy Congress shows courage

When the government bans homework, lowers the drinking age and prohibits senior citizens from driving all on the same day, there can be only one explanation: those yahoos in Congress…

Warp speed for equality

When Captain James T. Kirk, the most heterosexual man in the universe, agrees to perform a gay wedding on the Starship Enterprise, the future bodes well for equality. As Mr….

Kids lose when schools cut sports

Before the big race, my teammates and I huddled together, stacked our hands and cheered like the pumped-up teenagers we were. Twenty-five years later, I still hear the echoes. Castro…

Bachar lived with risks shared by many

Ascending a sea of knobs on the steep west face of Yosemite’s Fairview Dome, John Bachar was enjoying a fine autumn day, cool and quiet without another climber in sight….

Imperiled rock climb offers lessons for state crisis

Near the top of Mt. Diablo stands a challenging rock climb called Amazing Face. Climbers who wish to scale it had better go soon, as the state may close the…

Protect marriage … from straight people

As homosexual marriage spreads state by state, everyone knows the struggle is far from over. Now Americans must speedily unite to ban the unholy unions of … straight people. Why?…

End the tyranny of hiking fees

An awesome view of the snow-capped Sierra Nevada range rewards visitors to the summit of Mt. Whitney in Sequoia National Park. Each time I visit this treasure, it rewards and…

To save education, scrap BTSA

Teachers face no shortage of adversity, from high-maintenance kids and parents to high-stakes tests and false fire alarms. Sometimes the good news seems rare, so this article tacked to my…

Bring on the phone cops

Fans of the television sitcom “WKRP in Cincinnati” may remember Dr. Johnny Fever’s funniest moment in the series. After he smashed a telephone to pieces in a fit of rage,…

A Giants fan dumps Barry

Last Christmas I gave my friend Aaron a Barry Bonds “babooshka” doll. Aaron is only a casual fan, but he dabbles in the mystic arts, and I asked him to…

The hidden morals of “Grand Theft Auto”

I picked up some bad habits lately: running over pedestrians for their pocket money, incinerating enemy gangsters with Molotov cocktails, and blowing up cops with a rocket launcher. But starting…

Student election theatrics mirror national politics

Campaign posters blanket the walls each election week at the high school where I teach. This year, some posters reflected a more unscrupulous election than usual. “Bob has no friends,…

“It’s like impossible”

Anyone who spends much time with teenagers has noticed their unfortunate use of the word “like” outside the parameters of affection or comparison.

Don’t wish upon a STAR

Aaron and Travis didn’t even try to fake it. When the test started, they started bubbling in their answer forms without even reading the test questions. Choosing answer “A” for…