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Roundtable: Vets React To Fallujah Loss; Racial Profiling And SDPD; Chargers In Denver; Jerry Coleman

Audio

HOST:

Mark Sauer

GUESTS:

Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times

Megan Burks, KPBS News

Jay Paris, San Diego sportswriter

Transcript

Some Vets Disheartened By Fallujah Loss

The Iraqi city of Fallujah was taken by U.S. Marines in house-to-house combat over several bloody weeks in 2004-2005. This week it fell to al-Qaida-linked fighters.

Approximately 100 Marines died in Fallujah nine years ago, and another 1,000 were wounded. The current battle is between the insurgent, resurgent Sunnis and the government troops, made up mostly of Shiite Muslims.

Some experts feel that Fallujah is merely one battle in a regional war fought by zealots from several Middle Eastern states. Others, including veterans, are disheartened that the city they fought so hard for has been lost.

And some Americans who fought — and their families — are now asking if it was worth it.

Racial Profiling In San Diego?

A decade ago, the San Diego Police Department was a leader in collecting and monitoring racial data for traffic stops, a policy put into place by current San Diego Police Chief William Lansdowne.

Tracking demographic information helps a police department determine whether its officers may be engaging in racial profiling.

Today, most big-city police departments collect such data, but SDPD has fallen behind. Officers now do so for only 20% of traffic stops. Lansdowne says the decrease is because San Diego residents are not subjected to racial profiling and complaints are minimal.

Residents of areas like City Heights with large minority populations beg to differ. This year, a federal judge ruled that the Fourth Amendment rights of two City Heights residents were violated during a traffic stop in 2010. The city agreed to pay a settlement of $450,000.

Chargers In Denver; San Diego Mourns Jerry Coleman

The San Diego Chargers have won their last five games, including last week’s wild card game, and will meet the Denver Broncos in the playoffs on Sunday.

Not many San Diegans would have predicted a playoff berth for the Chargers in the first few dismal weeks of the season, but here we are.

Jerry Coleman, broadcaster for the San Diego Padres every year since 1972 (except for 1980, when he managed the club), died last weekend at age 89.

Coleman has been lauded here and nationally for his war service and his baseball career. Most of all, friends, sportswriters and colleagues have shaken their heads in wonder at Coleman’s humility and his kindness, especially rare qualities in professional sports.

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