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On November 8, San Antonio votes on Proposition 2, which would amend Texas' Bill of Rights to define marriage as "the union of one man and one woman." Last week, the Ku Klux Klan of Cleveland, Texas, issued a press release supporting the amendment, stating "Homosexuality is like cancer ... if untreated it will ... eventually destroy our society. This is not the word of the Klan; this is the word of Yahweh."

Meanwhile, the First Unitarian Universalist Church announced support for gay marriage and opposition to the amendment, which it said would write discrimination and prejudice into the Texas constitution. "Our church voted to actively oppose this mean-spirited amendment."

Free bird

In these times of diminishing donations and budget cuts, communities and organizations struggle to maintain their information systems and software, much less upgrade. On Saturday, November 5, Salsa-Net and the Urban-15 group will join forces to host Penguin Day, a one-day intensive workshop and training session for individuals, governmental agencies, and non-profits that want to know more about free and Open-Source software.

Penguin Day will be facilitated by software consultant Aspiration, which will address a range of topics, from demystifying free and Open-Source software to identifying the software challenges faced by non-profits. The workshop is $50 for organizations, $25 for individuals, and runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Urban-15 Studios, 2500 S. Presa.

One less live oak

Acting on a tip from environmental activist Kathleen Trenchard, last week City Arborist Debbie Reid issued a violation to Jack Tho Phung, owner of Saigon Express, 1626 McCullough, for cutting down a 25-inch heritage live oak tree. Phung declined to comment on his reasons for cutting down the tree.

Reid says the City will seek a civil settlement, rather than a criminal charge, for the initial amount of $7,500, which is based on the diameter inches of the felled tree. Phung could reduce the fee by planting another tree on his property. According to SA's tree ordinance, the fee may be applied to environmental education, tree planting, or tree maintenance.

Susan Pagani

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October 21, 2020

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