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    A Case of EOW: Early Obama Withdrawal

    I am suffering from EOW (Early Obama Withdrawal). No week seems to go by without the President doing something that reconfirms why I have been a fan of his since the very beginning. I especially applaud his most recent gun control executive orders, and I am sure that I wasn’t the only one who was left speechless after watching him tear up during his emotional press conference. We often expect our leaders to show authenticity and to stand up for what is right, even against all odds. I can’t think of any recent President who has been more approachable or authentic than Obama, despite a Republican party that has made it its mission to destroy his policies and presidency from day one.

    The GOP clown car of presidential candidates doesn’t seem to get it. Trump proclaimed proudly that he would get rid of gun-free zones in schools on his first day in the White House. Cruz auctioned off engraved limited edition rifles, and Rubio claims that no gun control laws would have prevented any of the mass shootings in recent history. Thankfully, it seems like the Republicans are out of touch again, as 67% of Americans support the President’s decision. I am equally excited that Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom is championing a tough firearms-control measure in California, and look forward to supporting it. It is going to be a tough fight, but the time is right to make a change to how this country approaches gun ownership. Enough is enough.

    Speaking of against all odds…I want to commend everyone who has been vocal and fighting against our rogue and out of control Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC). After a strong push from the Save City College Coalition; Congressmembers Pelosi and Speier; our state delegation of Ting, Chiu, and Leno; City College Trustees; the California Community College Board of Governors; the San Francisco City Attorney’s Office; and the Courts; we can now add the Department of Education (DOE) to the group questioning ACCJC. On January 8, Acting Secretary of Education King upheld a DOE decision from 2014 that found ACCJC out of compliance with education standards. Like my mother always said, “When you point a finger, two fingers point right back at you.” I wonder if Barbara Beno ever thought about that one.

    Although it is great news that the days of ACCJC terrorizing public education institutions are nearing the end, it has also come at a huge cost to City College. We are left to pick up the pieces locally. Our enrollment is still down significantly, CCSF is still dealing with tremendous administrative and financial challenges, and trust still has to be earned back. I was incredibly honored to join fellow Trustees Mandelman and Selby on January 7 for an enrollment outreach campaign at BART stations all around San Francisco. I hope you saw our many incredible faculty volunteers who braved the cold and rain from 6:30 am to 7 pm handing out schedules and enrollment information. Classes start January 19. Lifelong learning is sexy! Enroll today at

    Alex Randolph is a Trustee for City College of San Francisco. He previously served in President Obama’s administration and as an LGBT advisor for Mayor Newsom. He lives in the Castro with his partner Trevor.