June 30, 2000
(Since Mr. Hanks Commentary on the Highland Ave police blockade appeared in La Prensa San Diego (6/23/00) citizen reaction was swift.)
The business community was outraged at the police-state methods were imposed. La Prensa San Diego was quickly made aware of the grave impact, that the closing down of 23 blocks of Highland Ave, mostly the business district and during the weekend, had upon their businesses.
The Mexican American community voiced their outraged that a practice that had once before been closed down because of its selective racist-discriminatory nature, would once again be carried out by the city of National city and its police department.
It didn't take long for dormant groups to gather together and lunch a PETITION campaign demanding that the offending action be terminated. It is now obvious that the Mayor and his City Council should immediately take action to remove MUNICIPAL CODE 11.68.050 from the books.
The Petition being circulated reads, in part:
DEMANDING THE CLOSURE OF HIGHLAND AVENUE BE STOPPED AND THE TERMINATION OF EMPLOYMENT OF THE CHIEF OF POLICE SKIP DICERCHIO.
WE THE PEOPLE...
The residents of the community of National City, California, County of San Diego do hereby petition our elected officials to order the City Manager, Tom McCabe to order the Chief of Police Skip DiCerchio to STOP the closing of higland Ave.
WE THE PEOPLE..
...Demand that our elected officials order the City Manager, Tom McCabe to terminate the employment of Skip DiCerchio, Chief of Police and replace him with a chief who respects the basic right of the people, to move about freely withOUT restraint.....
(As of today over 500 signatures have been collected!)