Sunday, June 14, 2020

A frank discussion of race and white privilege is planned for The Richard Beene Show this week, The Cat People hold a fund raiser and what in hell are all those fireworks going off in all hours about town?

Welcome to Bakersfield Observed. Our mission is to celebrate life in Kern County by focusing on newsmakers and events and the local characters who make this community such a special place. The views expressed here are strictly my own and do not represent any other person or organization.

 * ... OUR NATION: Protests and riots are erupting across our county as people take to the streets to protest systemic racism not only in police departments, but in society in general. Are we in for a
summer of protests and violence? Will all of this ever end? We will devote two days this week on The Richard Beene Show (daily from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on KERN NewsTalk 96.1 FM/1180 AM) to the topics of racism, white privilege and historic grievances rooted in our shared history. On Monday Pastor Angelo Frazier of Riverlakes Community Church joins us at 2:30 p.m. and on Tuesday at 1:30 p.m. Keith Wolaridge of the Panama Buena Vista School District and Michael Burroughs of CSUB's Kelley Institute of Ethics join the show.

Looking to help a good cause? The Cat People, one of our community's more active non profits engaged in reusing stray cats, is holding a fund raiser where a photo of your car will be mounted on a ceramic tile for $30.

 * ... SPOTTED ON TWITTER: "A 70-year-old man in Seattle survived the coronavirus, got applauded by staff when he left the hospital after 62 days -- and then got a $1.1 million, 181-page hospital bill."

* ... TRASH:
We all know Kern County's reputation as a dumping ground, where some residents don't think twice about leaving a mattress, box spring and broken TVs next to the road. But few roads are more littered than Camino Grande Drive right off Fairfax and Alfred Harrell Highway, a stretch known to cyclists as the "old dump road" that leads to a cogeneration plant. Almost every day someone, too lazy to take a load to the Kern County Dump off Bena Road, unceremoniously leaves mountains of trash by the side of the road.

Are you one of the hundreds of residents who have heard fireworks going off during the past few weeks? People are speculating why: is it related to the Black Lives Matter protests? Early warning that July Fourth is coming? Just more random noise from the mischievous?

 * ... GRANITE STATION: My friend John Kelley posted these pictures, old and current, of Granite State just outside of Woody. Said Kelley: "Built it 1873 by John Elden, this stand of buildings served as store, restaurant, and lodging place on the stage route between Bakersfield and Glennville. In later years it became a stopping place for freighters and sheepmen who were on their trek to the Mojave Desert. Granite Station had one of the longest bars in California, the building it was in burned down several years past BIG loss."

 * ... MEMORIES: The old Highland Cafe back in 1920., thanks to Steven Humprhreys.

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