Messages of love, optimism in La Mesa.

Love is the solution.
Love is the solution.

This weekend I walked a little around La Mesa. I hadn’t been out that way since January of last year.

My heart was warmed to see many messages of love and optimism decorating the chain link fence surrounding property that was destroyed during the late May riot, which was fueled by the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis that same month.

The community–mostly young people–produced idealistic artwork full of hope. I saw the heartfelt desire for equality, peace, understanding, and the end of racism. Love and kindness were in most of the messages.

The result of arson during a riot in La Mesa, California.
The result of arson during a riot in La Mesa, California.
Unity in the community.
Unity in the community.
Positive messages of love and equality on a fence in La Mesa.
Positive messages of love and equality on a fence in La Mesa.
Paintings donated by Pink Rose Cafe with support of the La Mesa community.
Paintings donated by Pink Rose Cafe with support of the La Mesa community.
Love sees no color. End racism.
Love sees no color. End racism.
Hopeful images painted by a young person.
Hopeful images painted by a young person.
We are all under the same sun.
We are all under the same sun.
All we need is love.
All we need is love.
Strong. Hope. Heartbeat. Heartfelt.
Strong. Hope. Heartbeat. Heartfelt.
A wise quote about improving the world from Dr. Seuss.
A wise quote about improving the world from Dr. Seuss.
Step into the daylight.
Step into the daylight.
Be positive.
Be positive.
Let us embrace all the colors.
Let us embrace all the colors.
Artwork along the fence represents the optimism of La Mesa residents.
Artwork along the fence represents the optimism of La Mesa residents.
Together friends.
Together friends.
La Mesa kids stand for change, unity, hope, love.
La Mesa kids stand for change, unity, hope, love.
There can be miracles when you believe. Though hope is frail, it's hard to kill.
There can be miracles when you believe. Though hope is frail, it’s hard to kill.
What I'm looking for is not out there, it is in me.
What I’m looking for is not out there, it is in me.
Do justice. Walk humbly.
Do justice. Walk humbly.
We're in this together.
We’re in this together.
A hopeful vision.
A hopeful vision.
Fight for what's right.
Fight for what’s right.
Be kind.
Be kind.
More heartfelt sentiments along the fence.
More heartfelt sentiments along the fence.
Be you. Shine bright.
Be you. Shine bright.
Be the change.
Be the change.
Love and respect for your neighbor.
Love and respect for your neighbor.
We can't help everyone, but everyone can help someone.
We can’t help everyone, but everyone can help someone.
Listen.
Listen.
Grow through what you go through.
Grow through what you go through.
Love one another.
Love one another.
Fine artwork full of humanity.
Fine artwork full of humanity.
Make the world a better place.
Make the world a better place.
Love wins.
Love wins.
Peace and love. Love will win.
Peace and love. Love will win.
When you focus on good, the good gets better.
When you focus on good, the good gets better.
Shine like stars.
Shine like stars.
Wisdom from Martin Luther King, Jr. Hate cannot drive out hate--only love can.
Wisdom from Martin Luther King, Jr. Hate cannot drive out hate–only love can.
Love not hate makes America great.
Love not hate makes America great.
Peace. Love. Hope.
Peace. Love. Hope.
Believe there is good.
Believe there is good.
Kindness is the sunshine in which everything and everyone can grow.
Kindness is the sunshine in which everything and everyone can grow.
Kindness matters.
Kindness matters.
All black lives matter.
All black lives matter.
The dove of peace.
The dove of peace.
Love. United we stand.
Love. United we stand.
Love grows here.
Love grows here.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

The answer to hate, violence and anger.

In this old world, there seems to be no shortage of hate, violence and anger.

In my experience, there’s only one answer to all that is negative.

Love.

A positive, unselfish love for one another.

During my walks around San Diego, I’ve photographed many words and images that express a simple idea: We should love one another.

And why not?

Life is short for every one of us.

Only love in our hearts gives us true fulfillment.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Two wise MLK quotes for challenging times.

Peace as the world commonly understands it comes when the summer sky is clear and the sun shines in scintillating beauty, when the pocketbook is full, when the mind and body are free of ache and pain..but...true peace...is a calmness of soul amid terrors of trouble, inner tranquility amid the howl and rage of outer storm...
Peace as the world commonly understands it comes when the summer sky is clear and the sun shines in scintillating beauty, when the pocketbook is full, when the mind and body are free of ache and pain..but…true peace…is a calmness of soul amid terrors of trouble, inner tranquility amid the howl and rage of outer storm…

The worldwide coronavirus pandemic has suddenly made all of our lives very challenging. There is disruption, isolation, uncertainty, fear, and for too many, grieving.

As I took my exercise in downtown San Diego, careful to maintain social distance as other walkers neared, I noticed a couple of wise quotes by Martin Luther King Jr. enshrined along the MLK Promenade. They are perfect for this difficult time we live in.

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera. You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter.

Optimism and love at the big MLK Parade!

The big 40th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day Parade was held this afternoon along San Diego’s beautiful Embarcadero. So many faces were radiant with optimism and love.

Isn’t that the way our world should be?

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Only in the darkness can you see the stars.

An insightful quote by civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. can be seen in North Park. The few words are powerful and true.

This inspiring street art is painted on three sidewalk electrical boxes on 30th Street, just north of Redwood Street.

Only in the Darkness
Only in the Darkness
Can you See the
Can you See the
Stars
Stars
Martin Luther King Jr.
Martin Luther King Jr.

Only in the darkness can you see the stars.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Student posters: Equality and Justice For All.

Justice and Equality.
Justice and Equality.

Today is Martin Luther King Jr. Day. It’s a day for reflection and hope.

This morning I walked past San Diego’s downtown Edward J. Schwartz United States Courthouse. I paused by several window displays to take photographs of colorful youth art.

The artwork was chosen from many entries to the San Diego County Bar Association’s 2018 Law Week Poster and Video Contest. The theme was: What does Equality and Justice for All mean to students?

Taking sharp photos through the windows was a challenge. I had to increase the contrast for each of these images.

Enjoy a few bits of wisdom from young hearts and minds:

Equal and Free!
Equal and Free!
Respect . . . Fairness . . . Education . . .
Respect . . . Fairness . . . Education . . .
All should mean Everyone.
All should mean Everyone.
Equality and Justice for All.
Equality and Justice for All.
Equality and Justice.
Equality and Justice.
Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.
Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.

“Now, I say to you today my friends, even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream. I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”

Martin Luther King Jr.

Faces of civil rights leaders on Imperial Avenue.

A street mural in San Diego that features many famous faces. Martin Luther King, Jr. is joined by others who have worked to advance civil rights.
A street mural in San Diego that features many famous faces. Martin Luther King, Jr. is joined by others who have worked to advance civil rights.

A long mural at the corner of 32nd Street and Imperial Avenue celebrates many of history’s most recognized civil rights leaders. Among them are those who have fought to empower the poor, advocates for democracy, human equality and social justice, and peacemakers.

Originally painted in 1986 to honor Martin Luther King, Jr., the mural was restored and augmented in 2002 by internationally renowned muralist and activist Mario Torero with the help of the local community. The mural now includes faces from around the world, as you can see in these photographs.

The colorful mural spans two walls near the border of two neighborhoods east of downtown San Diego: Logan Heights and Stockton. The images have again faded with time, but the idealism represented remains timeless and powerful.

The face of Cesar Chavez.
The face of Cesar Chavez.
The face of the Dalai Lama.
The face of the Dalai Lama.
The face of Óscar Romero.
The face of Óscar Romero.
The face of Corazon Aquino.
The face of Corazon Aquino.
The face of Desmond Tutu.
The face of Desmond Tutu.
The face of Nelson Mandela.
The face of Nelson Mandela.
The face of Mother Teresa.
The face of Mother Teresa.
The face of Chief Joseph.
The face of Chief Joseph.
The face of Mahatma Gandhi.
The face of Mahatma Gandhi.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

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Happiness and togetherness at MLK Day Parade.

People gather along Harbor Drive awaiting the start of the 2017 Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Parade in San Diego.
People gather together along Harbor Drive and await the start of the 2017 Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Parade in San Diego.

San Diego’s 2017 Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Parade started this afternoon at 2 o’clock. I arrived a bit early and made my way onto the tall ship Star of India. Best seat in the house!

What all did I see? Read the photo captions!

Lots of friendship and smiles up and down the street.
Lots of friendship and smiles up and down the street.
Some Navy officers gather near the MLK Day Parade's starting area.
Some Navy officers gather near the MLK Day Parade’s starting area.
The San Diego Padres would be in the parade. They were waiting with some baseball balloons by the Maritime Museum.
The San Diego Padres would be in the parade. They were waiting with some baseball balloons by the Maritime Museum.
One benefit of being a member of the Maritime Museum of San Diego--I could watch the parade from atop one of the world's most famous tall ships--the Star of India!
One benefit of being a member of the Maritime Museum of San Diego–I could freely watch the parade from atop one of the world’s most famous tall ships–the Star of India!
Now I'm looking down from the deck above the historic ship's forecastle. Joe who works at the museum and I had the best view of the parade all to ourselves!
Now I’m looking down from the deck above the historic ship’s forecastle. Joe who works at the museum and I had the best view of the parade all to ourselves!
Look at all the folks gathering for the big MLK Day Parade. Every year, it's one of the most popular parades in San Diego.
Look at all the folks gathering for the big MLK Day Parade. Every year, it’s one of the most popular parades in San Diego.
From the Star of India we overlooked the parade's starting point. Lots of groups were waiting by their vehicles, including these Homeland Security guys posing for a picture.
From the Star of India we overlooked the parade’s starting point. Lots of groups were waiting by their vehicles, including these Homeland Security guys posing for a picture.
I also spotted law enforcement officers from around San Diego and the Border Patrol.
I also spotted law enforcement officers from around San Diego and the Border Patrol.
But the politicians manage to always go first. I spotted Todd Gloria, Toni Atkins, Susan Davis and Shirley Weber.
A pigeon joined us on the tall ship’s rigging.  Funny how the politicians manage to always go first. I spotted Todd Gloria, Toni Atkins, Susan Davis and Shirley Weber.
Tending to the flags.
Tending to the flags.
The parade has begun and here comes the Padres' happy mascot, the Swinging Friar!
The parade has begun and here comes the Padres’ happy mascot, the Swinging Friar!
The Chargers might be history, but San Diego's beloved Padres remain a strong part of our wonderful community.
The Chargers might be history, but San Diego’s beloved Padres remain a strong part of our wonderful community.
I think these guys marching are the San Diego County Sheriffs.
I think those guys marching are the San Diego County Sheriffs.
Oh, goodness! It's the Geico gecko.
Oh, goodness! It’s the Geico gecko.
Fellowship and laughter in one group before beginning down the parade route.
Fellowship and laughter in one group before beginning down the parade route.
From our cool vantage point above the starting point, sometimes the big event seemed like two parades in one!
From our cool vantage point above the starting point, sometimes the big event seemed like two parades in one!
It's a small planet. Perhaps we human-types ought to be nice to one another. Martin Luther King, Jr. knew that love overcomes hate.
It’s a small planet. Perhaps we humans ought to be nice to one another. Martin Luther King, Jr. knew that love overcomes hate.
I realized my small camera struggles at a distance, so after a bit I said bye to Joe and headed down to Harbor Drive to get closer shots.
I realized my small camera struggles at a distance, so after a bit I said bye to Joe and headed down to Harbor Drive to get closer shots.
Here comes the Saint Peter Grand Lodge!
Here comes the Saint Peter Grand Lodge!
Hello!
Hello!
Here comes a bright yellow float carrying some beauty queens!
Here comes a bright yellow float carrying some beauty queens!
Wow--look at all the color. The Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Parade is a happy celebration of human diversity and togetherness.
Wow–look at all the happy people. The Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Parade is a joyful celebration of human diversity and togetherness.
Here come some drummers!
Here come some drummers!
I believe these guys are students from UCSD. The County Administration Building rises in the background.
I believe these guys are students from UCSD. The County Administration Building rises in the background.
Lots of colorful costumes and finery representing different backgrounds and cultures. San Diego comes together as one family.
Lots of colorful costumes and finery representing different experiences and cultures. San Diego comes together as one family.
Smiles, happiness and togetherness. May the parade go on and on...
Smiles, happiness and togetherness. May the parade go on and on…

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Music and fun at San Diego Multicultural Festival!

This super nice lady posed while blowing some bubbles! And I got photobombed! What fun!
This super nice lady posed while blowing some bubbles! And I got photobombed! What fun!

Lots of photos today!

Let’s start out with the fun San Diego Multicultural Festival, which was held in sunny Ruocco Park, downtown near Tuna Harbor. I always enjoy walking through the annual event, taking in the cool, happy vibe and listening to some great live music. Here are a few pics!

Remember–tomorrow is the big MLK parade which goes down Harbor Drive along the Embarcadero! It begins at 2 o’clock!

Folks were at the San Diego Multicultural Festival in Ruocco Park listening to lots of great live music.
Folks were at the San Diego Multicultural Festival in Ruocco Park listening to lots of great live music.
This smiling lady representing the WorldBeat Cultural Center in Balboa Park had a table full of beautiful crafts. They'll be having a Let Freedom Ring event on MLK Day.
This smiling lady representing the WorldBeat Cultural Center in Balboa Park had a table full of beautiful crafts. They’ll be having a Let Freedom Ring event on MLK Day.
Super colorful art and wares at the WorldBeat table. Celebrating life, diversity and Martin Luther King Jr. Day in San Diego!
Super colorful art and wares at the WorldBeat table. Celebrating life, diversity and Martin Luther King Jr. Day in San Diego!
People were enjoying drumming on the grass in Ruocco Park, near Seaport Village.
People were enjoying drumming on the grass in Ruocco Park, near Seaport Village.
This cool musician on the stage saw me taking a photo! Hello!
This cool musician on the stage saw me taking a photo! Hello!

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Quotes on the Martin Luther King Jr. Promenade.

Walking past a plaque which is engraved with one of many important quotes by Martin Luther King Jr.
Walking past a plaque which is engraved with one of many important quotes by Martin Luther King Jr.

I frequently walk along the Martin Luther King Jr. Promenade in downtown San Diego. Whenever I do, I like to randomly read some of the historic MLK quotes that are engraved in plaques along the long pathway. I’ve never counted the number of quotes. There are easily dozens. Every quote on every plaque is important and powerful, and reflects the intelligence, energy, optimism and wisdom of America’s great civil rights leader.

Here are photos taken at different times of a few of Dr. King’s quotes…

Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor. It must be demanded by the oppressed.
Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor. It must be demanded by the oppressed.
The deep rumbling of discontent that we hear today is the thunder of disinherited masses, rising from dungeons of oppression to the bright hills of freedom in one majestic chorus.
The deep rumbling of discontent that we hear today is the thunder of disinherited masses, rising from dungeons of oppression to the bright hills of freedom in one majestic chorus.
Along the way of life, someone must have sense enough and morality enough to cut off the chain of hate. This can only be done by projecting the ethic of love to the center of our lives.
Along the way of life, someone must have sense enough and morality enough to cut off the chain of hate. This can only be done by projecting the ethic of love to the center of our lives.
We have flown the air like birds and swum the sea like fishes, but have yet to learn the simple act of walking the Earth like brothers.
We have flown the air like birds and swum the sea like fishes, but have yet to learn the simple act of walking the Earth like brothers.
Two people walk side-by-side down the Martin Luther King Jr. Promenade in downtown San Diego.
Two people walk side-by-side down the Martin Luther King Jr. Promenade in downtown San Diego.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.
The democratic ideal of freedom and equality will be fulfilled for all--or all human beings will share in the resulting social and spiritual doom...
The democratic ideal of freedom and equality will be fulfilled for all–or all human beings will share in the resulting social and spiritual doom…
The greatest victory of the civil rights period was something internal...We armed ourselves with dignity and self-respect...We straightened our backs up...
The greatest victory of the civil rights period was something internal…We armed ourselves with dignity and self-respect…We straightened our backs up…
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
Any law that uplifts human personality is just, any law that degrades human personality is unjust.
Any law that uplifts human personality is just, any law that degrades human personality is unjust.
Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.
Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.
Breaking the Chains sculpture, by Melvin Edwards, reminds people on MLK Promenade of the positive legacy of a great civil rights leader.
Breaking the Chains sculpture, by Melvin Edwards, reminds people on MLK Promenade of the positive legacy of a great civil rights leader.

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