Fear, Loathing and Envy From Down Pacific Coast Highway – Santa Monica Paints Malibu As Racist Snoots

Written by on April 19, 2021

Guns were blazing … evil and vicious things said … as Malibu and Santa Monica duked it out in divorce court Saturday.

Malibu residents poured out injustices and slights. 

Santa Monicans …. most unkind towards Malibu

After the hearing … Malibu’s independence advocate on the board Craig Foster was upbeat.


“Malibu’s latest offer is to let the county decide the finances.

“It’s not about money for Malibu.

“It’s about local control, with a 41 percent is enrollment we have s serious problem in our city, not just in our school.

“And it’s only going to be solved by local control.”

And that was the upbeat campaign voiced by dozens of Malibu independence advocates.

Even some Malibu independence advocates who reside in Santa Monica.

But… the overwhelming message from down PCH … Malibu is a nasty racist and exclusionary place.


SM PARENT 1: “The Malibu petition would also create one of the whitest districts in the country … 80 percent white.

SM PARENT 2: “Hard-won educational equity is now threatened by Malibu’s efforts to separate from the district … on terms highly unfavorable to students of Santa Monica.

SM PARENT 3: “We cannot sit silently by …, when the impact of Malibu’s request for a fiscally inequitable split will leave the currently far-more-diverse less than 50 percent white studcent population in Santa Monica with less than half the per student level of funding.”

Speakers calling Malibu racist and exclusionary were following the tone set by school board members… Jon Kean … and Laurie Lieberman … and superintendent … Ben Drati.

True … those three did not toss the racism mudpies … they let the Samohi community carry that water.

This is the bottom line from the Santa Monica negotiator … Paul Silvern


“Despite the obvious diseconomies of operating a school district with a very small and shrinking student body … and the diversity and equity concerns articulated by the ACLU and NAACP among others …

“I urge the committee to deny the petition unless it can find based on substantial evidence that there will be no reduction current funding for the remaining Santa Monica school district compared with SMMUSD in the absence of unification.

“Finally … I urge the committee to clearly state that any unification proposal that may ultimately receive approval by the state Board of Education … must receive a majority vote in both Santa Monica and Malibu and Santa Monica to become effective.”

That would be a deal killer.

Few voters in Santa Monica are going to walk away from the pot of gold in Malibu tax revenues.

In the end … Craig Foster said hw thinks Malibu’s message is one of fairness and local control will carry the day.


“You know the old expression?

“If the facts are with your, argue the facts.

“If the law is with you, argue the law.

“And if the facts and law are both against you … stand on the table and scream for justice.

“Santa Monica just simply doesn’t have the facts or law on their side so they are making up a bunch of stuff simply because it’s a money grab.”

One major issue may have been the flood of public comments and videos submitted at the last minute.

More than 200 … so many that the bureaucrats at the Office of Education needed three hours to process them and send them on to committee members,

They complained of being up until 2:30 in the morning … before the 9:30 am hearing … looking at videos and e-mails.

So where do we stand now?

Where do the cars fall?
County staff will present a report … for the next and final meeting in June.

One important thing to listen to are the comments of committee member Barry Snell at the end of the meeting.

You may recognize that name.

You have sen it on your ballot hereon Malibu.

Barry Snell represents both Santa Monica and Malibu on the Santa Monica College Board of Directors.

And he sits on the county’s committee … the divorce court.

Listen carefully to his summation.


“Many of the speakers today I now personally … living in the district .. and I do understand their passion for this issue.

And I trust that the committee wanted to find an answer that would be an answer that would be fair and equitable.”

Fair and equitable … the slogan repeated by the Santa Monica people and the Malibu people.

Will Santa Monica continue to negotiate with Malibu … maybe reach a compromise … between now and then?

That story tomorrow.

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