Update from Abby 10/4/08

Things are heating up!

Have you noticed lately that the NHDC has been accused of being intimidating and hostile? We’ve been called bullies. The recent email that is going around from Home Depot’s Outreach Team called us a neighborhood gang. Last year we were accused of being racists – that didn’t stick, of course, because it isn’t true. And these new accusations aren’t true either.

You’ve all seen the video of Jeff Nichols giving Joe a little shove. Joe didn’t let himself get provoked, and to his credit he didn’t react, because he’s not that kind of guy.

The thing is, very recently a member of the NHDC was threatened by an individual who is possibly working with Home Depot’s PR organization and may be trying to create a confrontation that would discredit the NHDC. We don’t want that to happen.

You may remember that there were some fairly provocative signature-gatherers a couple of years ago. We believe that there may soon be some similar or possibly even more outrageous behavior intended to try the patience and tempers of our citizens. I’m not saying this to scare anyone – I’m only saying this to inform all NHDC and STA supporters that we must be prepared for … well … almost anything.

We are strictly a non-violent group.

Cesar Chavez said it so well: “Nonviolence is not inaction. It is not for the timid or the weak. It is hard work. It is the patience to win.”

This describes our philosophy pretty well, I think.

If you find yourself in a situation where you feel angry or frustrated, remember:

You need to walk away and not allow yourself to be provoked.

Here are a few tips:

Don’t yell or use abusive language.

Don’t let yourself be bullied or hurt.

Don’t shove back.

Don’t damage anyone’s personal belongings.

Don’t trespass.

We are not against people, we are against shady tactics.

Remember to stay safe and sane while continuing to exercise your First Amendment Rights!

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2 Comments

  1. Elaine Brown

     /  Saturday, October 4, 2008

    Over the years, I have been very active in confrontations in Sunland Tujunga with power, influence and money, and I absolutely agree with Abby.

    A tiny little group of us defeated BP/ARCO when they tried to put a trophy station on the old Ford property which is presently being developed into a “large,” but much needed shopping center.

    We were told over and over by the powers that be, that we could never defeat BP, the largest corporation in the world. But we never looked back and eventually we won. If we had not confronted that huge corporation, today, instead of a shopping center, we would have a twenty-pump gas station where more beer than gas is sold.

    Some of those battles included a devious attempt to bring a CRA project to Sunland Tujunga with the hidden intention of tearing down all of the buildings in our historic old town on Commerce, and on Foothill, where the torn-down buildings would have been replaced with six-story condo buildings.

    Next time you drive down Foothill look at how much of the view is gone just from the few two- and three-story buildings we already have, think about the increased traffic, the torn up streets, the large grading and dirt hauling equipment, trucks, cranes, everything that comes with continuous demolition, grading, hauling, and construction that would have lasted as long as 40 or more years as it has in Valley Village. We ended that hallucination just as we did the ARCO project.

    How have we always won these battles with powerful, wealthy and/or influential developers, corporations and politicians? By exposing the lies and the deceit that surrounds these power grabs; by reaching out to our neighbors and listening to their views; by volunteering and donating; by organizing and researching; by relying on the laws and ordinances; by publicizing and educating; by maintaining polite but firm protest; by diligence, patience, and perseverance; by staying focused, calm, determined, logical, united, and peaceful. And as we saw recently at the DAC, even passion and theatrics do not have to contain aggression.

    They try to wear us down, but we always refresh, regroup and keep on plugging for this is the ROCK, folks, and we hang together no matter how tough it gets. It is the water! And the air! And the vibrations!

    So, what do we have to say to Rick Percell, Jeff Nichols, Home Depot, Consensus Planning, the City Attorney, the Mayor, and the DRP?

    “NO HOME DEPOT!”

  2. Carol T.

     /  Sunday, October 5, 2008

    As always the motivational words from our true community leaders come at just the right time .

    Patience is our virtue here in S-T and being reminded of past success for due diligence to do what is right is what keeps us going.

    Thanks and hip hip hooray for the STA !

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