By John Ramos

PLEASANTON (KPIX 5) — Like many suburban towns, local news and reviews are often featured in Facebook group pages, and “Pleasanton Rants and Raves” is one such page that enjoys a certain amount of popularity – with more than 6,000 subscribers.

But earlier this week, a photo – taken from the internet – was posted of a heavily-armed man in traditional Arab clothing mowing his lawn. It included a joke caption … but not everyone thought it was funny.

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“I’ve always used it as information as, you know, what’s going on in Pleasanton, what are nice places to go for dinner,” said Pleasanton resident Sandy Schneider. “And it degenerated from there from people that were posting things that were actually quite rude and racist.”

For days now the site has become a battlefield between people who object to the posting and those who think they’re being too politically correct. And the fight has become quite personal with a lot of name-calling.

“My husband just recently said, ‘I have to get off this site because all I’m getting are rants,'” said Pleasanton resident Theresa Luevano. “Nobody’s raving about stuff. It’s just rant, rant, rants.”

One reason it continues is because the offending post was actually made by one of the website’s administrators. Schneider objected, and she and others who have complained have been banned from the site.

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If you try to sign up for Pleasanton Rants & Raves now you have to answer questions like, “Can you take a joke?” and “Will you report something if you don’t agree with it?”

But Schneider wasn’t waiting to change anyone’s mind. On Tuesday, she launched a new Facebook site called Pleasanton Community … designed for people who are tired of everything being a fight. It’s already attracted more than 300 members in just two days.

“It’s brand new, there hasn’t been any name calling,” said Schneider. “There’s been lots of thank you’s. Polite thank-you’s.”

An administrator for the Pleasanton Rants and Raves page did not immediately respond to an inquiry from KPIX.


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