Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Local radio shot host Ralph Bailey suffers a broken jaw in a fight at KC Steakhouse, Louis Gill resigns as head of the homeless center and the Wasco City Council removes Alex Garcia as mayor

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 company or publication.

 * ... ALEX GARCIA: The Wasco City Council has voted to strip Mayor Alex Garcia of his title after

Garcia was cited for driving under the influence. The vote was 4-1 with Garcia objecting. Garcia claimed the move was in retaliation for his proposal to fly the LGBQT flag over Wasco City Hall, while his critics said it was a matter of personal responsibility. Garcia will remain on the City Council through the end of his term and has since pleaded no contest to reckless driving in exchange for the court dismissing a charge of driving while under the influence and acquitting him of a related charge of driving with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent.

 * ... LOUIS GILL RESIGNS: Louis Gill, one of the most prominent local players in the battle against homelessness, is leaving the nonprofit that operates the Bakersfield Homeless Center and the Alliance Against Family Violence and Sexual Assault. Gill has served as head of the homeless center for 21 years and he said it was time to move on. Gill's move immediately triggered speculation he may run for local office, although he has not said what may be next in line. Local Democrats have been privately hoping Gill might consider a run for office.

 * ... MORE TROUBLE FOR RALPH BAILEY: Longtime local radio talk show host Ralph Bailey has found himself embroiled in another late night controversy, once again involving his birthday celebration and KC Steakhouse, Bailey's favorite cocktail lounge. This time it happened over the weekend when Bailey, out with two friends to celebrate his 58th birthday, suffered a broken jaw when he was punched during an altercation on the dance floor involving a waitress and another customer. Grainy security footage appears to show Bailey headed to the dance floor with the waitress, but once there another man steps in to dance with the woman. Words are then exchanged, Bailey is pushed, Bailey reacts by grabbing a bar stool and then the unidentified patron punches Bailey twice before a crowd separated the two men. Bailey said he broke his jaw and it will be surgically repaired on Thursday.  Ironically, it was during the same birthday weekend in 2013 that Bailey once again found himself at KC Steakhouse before he was arrested for public intoxication while walking home. Bailey also pleaded no contest to DUI after a 2006 arrest on E Street near 20th Street and in September 2005 he was charged with DUI and ended up pleading no contest to reckless driving. Bailey currently does not drive, opting instead to use ride sharing services. The Ralph Bailey Show airs weekdays from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. on KERN NewsRadio 96.1 FM/1180 AM.

 * ... SPOTTED ON TWITTER: "I’m on a plant based diet, and right now my favorite plant is the one where they manufacture the Tyson chicken nuggets. "

* ... ALL THE HATE: A sign of the times: of all the competition in the Olympics this year, few teams have proved more controversial with some U.S. fans than the U.S. women's soccer team, whose two losses  eliminated the team from the Gold medal round. The face of the women's soccer team is none other than Megan Rapinoe, whose fondness for bending the knee during the national anthem has incurred so much wrath among some Americans. After the U.S. women lost to Canada, the internet exploded with anti-Rapinoe vitriol.

 * ... MISSING: Did you read the story in The Californian about the search for two men who appeared in the newspaper more than 20 years ago at the California Living Museum (CALM)? Steven Mayer writes the museum is trying to locate the two young men - identified in the photo caption as Zach Elliott and J.J. Thomas - to recreate the photo two decades later. 

 * ... MEMORIES: I spend far too much time on the Kern County History Fans Facebook page where contributors share historic photos and postcards like the ones here. Enjoy.

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