Filner's name defaced on Ingraham St. bridge

Crown Point passers-by have their opinions

Fisherman's Channel Bridge in Crown Point
  • Fisherman's Channel Bridge in Crown Point

On the morning of August 8, I opened an email that linked me to a photo of the Fisherman's Channel Bridge plaque.

The sender asked "if anyone knew the story of the scratched out Council Member."

The photo depicted former mayor Bob Filner's name etched off of the metal plaque on the northwest side of the bridge.

The plaque commemorated the building of the bridge in 1990.

The plaque commemorated the building of the bridge in 1990.

At about 3 pm that day, I drove to the Fisherman's Channel Bridge and parked off of Riviera Drive.

The two-foot wide metal plaque commemorated the building of the bridge in 1990. Of the eight city council members Filner's name was the only one ground off; Bruce Henderson's name which is about a quarter inch above Filner's, is partially scathed.

Filner's name was the only one ground off; Bruce Henderson's name is partially scathed.

Filner's name was the only one ground off; Bruce Henderson's name is partially scathed.

"You get a cordless Makita with a grinding wheel on it," said "John," who was parked at the Ski Beach Park on the south side of the bridge. "It takes nothing for a tool like that. I don't own one, but I am well versed in tools."

Miracle, a 24-year-old Army veteran was hanging out about 20 feet away from John.

"[The vandal] invested in that tool just to do that, like it was thought out," she said as she laid out her blanket underneath a tree, "maybe that person is a relative or a victim, for them to be that upset about the situation."

In 2013, Filner resigned as mayor of San Diego after numerous accusations of sexual misconduct; he then pled guilty to charges of sexual battery and false imprisonment.

"I had a similar situation in the military," Miracle said, "and maybe that person had a situation that was worse than mine, and they had ill feelings [towards Filner]."

I saw Cherry doing a speed walk towards the waterway that flows underneath the bridge.

"I don't think anybody should be defacing any property, period," Cherry said. "We have people running around creating negativity and we have enough to deal with without creating unnecessary drama and hatred."

I then tried talking to the lifeguard that was in a boat patrolling underneath the bridge; he ignored me.

"It's the same thing they are doing with President Donald Trump's star up there," John said, "I'm not defending or condemning that, but people that are offended are going to do that."

"We have the right to feel what we feel," Miracle said, "but it's not our right to condemn him by scratching off his name."

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I’m offended that tax dollars are wasted on these plaques in the first place. All these people, the ones with their names are on the plaques, did was spend, and sometimes waste, other’s people money. Whoop-dee-do!

Hey, Mr. Madriga, how about telling us how much these brass markers to politicians’ egos cost the taxpayers. I have no doubt the money would be spent more wisely repairing something else from the long list of unfunded infrastructure needs.

Finally, if these plaques are necessary, and I doubt it, then a simple year marker and “Funded by the Taxpayers” statement would be more accurate.

Plaques like that are an ego trip for those who have their names on them, and a way to keep name recognition in further elections. If you think about them, they should be offensive, and are utterly unnecessary.

The plaque looks like bronze, not brass.

dwbat: Thank you for your insightful analysis. 🙊🙉🙈

Glad to help out. Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc. Bronze is an alloy of copper and tin.

dwbat: Thank you for the general, yet imprecise, minutiae of the components of brass or bronze plaque which was purchased with taxpayer dollars and vandalized by an unknown suspect. It added much to the discussion.

If you are correct that it’s a bronze plaque, then additional metals (such as aluminium, manganese, nickel or zinc) and sometimes non-metals or metalloids such as arsenic, phosphorus or silicon could have been used to create it. Not to mention any impurities, you know, foreign substances which may have contaminated the forging processes.

Alas, without a scientific forensic analysis we will never know with certainty what it is.

Right, that's why you shouldn't call it "brass" (which you did). ;-)

Most likely, this plaque is made from 22000 Navy G bronze, which by weight is 88% copper, 6% tin, 1.5 % lead, and 4.5% zinc. This formula has been found to be most effective in the casting process.

Now I know why I slept through chemistry class.

It was much easier getting his name off of the plaque than it was to get him out of office.

it's sad to see how wound up everyone is.....I have no issue with Filner's name on a plaque or Trump on a star....can't folks just mellow out and if you don't want to see something like that, don't visit it or look at it if you are walking by.....the idea that criminal vandalism is celebrated anymore is so disturbing.

Just curious...would you be in favor or against removal of Confederate-era statues?

Read "Animal Farm" and get back to me about erasing history.

Politics is show biz. All those involved are equally obsessed about their billing. The naming of stadiums, bridges, hospital wings is just one of the sought-after side-benefits of doing that job. Rather than prohibit it, let’s take a little time to consider how we use these “markers” in helping to identify our culture and environment.

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