50 Years Ago
There are now between four and five thousand Negroes in Marin, or about 2 per cent of the population. Half of them live in Marin City… Marin City remains a ghetto, with all the familiar problems of rootless and angry young men and families supported by hard-working women who do the domestic work for their white sisters.
Half the remaining Negroes are prisoners in San Quentin…
With the exception of an exceedingly small number of professionals, Marin’s Negroes have little experience of the Good Life as the rest of the County knows it. Their problems are not the problems of the white people on the lagoons, the bay shores, and the hills. If there is substance to the rumors I have heard occasionally that some of the young men of Marin City have been thinking of making forays, armed with Molotov cocktails and firearms, upon the nearby white towns, then our problems will merge forcibly with theirs in a way whose outcome is hard to predict and dismaying to think about.
—Kenneth Lamott, 3/11/70
40 Years Ago
The Corte Madera City Council passed an ordinance Monday night prohibiting the sale of drug paraphernalia – hash pipes, roach clips, etc. – to minors, despite the fact that no stores in town sell such items. Phillip Green, police chief for Corte Madera and Larkspur, even expressed the opinion that such an ordinance was premature since the constitutionality of a similar measure has yet to be decided by the Court of Appeal. Nevertheless, the city council felt it was important to take an official stand against blatant commercialization of the drug culture.
30 Years Ago
Is the good life really slipping out of our grasp here in Marin? The perception that only the rich can afford to live here is reinforced when disgruntled residents, pleading poverty, pack their bags and head for cheaper pastures. And statistics like those in the census study released two weeks ago, ranking Marin the fourth wealthiest community in the country, don’t help. Nevertheless, plenty of Marinites with modest incomes are digging in their heels. They believe that the rewards of living here more than make up for the sacrifices. They have, in effect, redefined “the good life.”
—Nancy Hoffman, 3/9/90
20 Years Ago
By the time you read this, Super Tuesday will be freshly pasted into the historical record and the presidential campaign picture fine-tuned to a significant degree. My guess is that Dubya’s big bucks bandwagon will once again be flashing an eerie glow of invincibility. Nice run, McCain.
…I love this stuff, can’t get enough. But I’m not entirely comfortable with my political junkiedom. Far from it, in fact. Our culture clearly overvalues the slick, competitive aspect of politics at the expense of thoughtful exploration of how things should be run. How to fix what’s broke. Every time I watch the news and see the spread of American-style campaigning world-wide, I can’t help but think, “Oh, my God, what have we done to these poor saps?” Is the whole damn planet headed for hell in a Headline News hurry?…Has superficiality decisively Trumped substance?
—Mike Thomas, 3/8/00
—Compiled by Alex T. Randolph