January 30, 2010

The "Mt. Reagan" proposal: Art Mijares has had his 15 minutes. Can we move on now?

The Mayor of Claycord had a fun story Wednesday about a proposal by Oakley resident and devout Christian Art Mijares to change the name of Mount Diablo to Mount Reagan. To Mijares, "Diablo" is “derogatory and profane," and our 40th U.S. president was a great man--or something--and deserves this honor.

So, the initial story was fun, and then the dreaded MSM (mainstream media) got involved (and, as usual, didn't give credit to a local blogger for his scoop.) And, looking for a story that would be fun or entertaining and maybe create a sensation, they blew this whole issue up into something like Balloon Boy.

Now, we've got a "furor" and a "firestorm" on our hands. The headline for today's column by Contra Costa Times' Tom Barnidge is indeed "Devil of a Furor over Mount Diablo name change."

Seriously? A furor over this? A proposal that, as Barnidge says, "won't even make it into the foothills."

The Mayor of Claycord also pointed out that Mijares has asked for the name change in the past, "and just like before, I expect this to be denied."

That was back in 2005, and the US Board on Geographic Names also denied requests to change our 3,849-foot geographic landmark's name to Mount Yahweh, Mount Miwok, and Mount Ohlone.

It is true that lots of people are chiming in on the issue--including, now, yours truly, who missed the initial "furor" because of other pressing work/family issues. Claycord's original post has 236 comments on it. Barnidge says that 1,700 people responded to a Times poll on the issue. Only 9 percent liked Mijares' idea.

The rest (91 percent), according to Barnidge, said this poll question by the Times was "the stupidest poll question we'd ever asked."

It seems we have a lot of smart people our area. They are in no way taking Mijares' proposal seriously; nor are they feeling threatened by his attempt by him to put forth a certain political or religious agenda that they  might not agree with.

But, then, maybe we're all suckers, too. This proposal is ultimately a non-issue. Yet, we're commenting on it, or, like me, getting annoyed by it. Why? We all want a non-issue to get all hot and bothered about? So, we don't have to deal with more challenging issues, like the economy, jobs, wars...

So, Mr. Mijares has had his 15 minutes of fame on this Mount Diablo issue. But, perhaps we'll be hearing from him some more.  According to the Mayor of Claycord, he is likely to be seated on Contra Costa County's Alcohol and Other Drug Advisory Board.

No comments: