Sat. Mar 25th, 2023

Nothing sums up the “go to meetings, we know better than you” culture of Santa Ana’s infamous “Usual Suspects” quite like the “5-on-5” rules governing pick-up soccer games in our city’s parks.  Well thanks to Councilman Sal Tinajero the City Council’s Parks, Recreation, Education and Youth Committee has taken a new look at the ordinance and is going to send it packing, much like the council did to the “Usual Suspects” who used to infect our city commissions.

The ordinance, which was pushed through doing the “Usual Suspects” heyday, limits the number of people that can play soccer in our parks to teams of 5 to a side.  Traditionally soccer consists to 11 players on each team, but in soccer-crazy Santa Ana that is illegal in our parks!  Somewhere former councilmember and anti-Chivas USA activist Tom Lutz is still smiling at the thought of the “5-on-5” rule.

According to the O.C. Register’s Andrew Galvin, the ordinance came to Councilmember Tinajero’s attention when he saw one of our City Park Rangers break up a soccer game because the number of players exceeded the ridiculous, and racist, “5-on-5” rule.  Tinajero found out from the Park Ranger that a nearby neighborhood association had called and complained about the soccer players.  To be clear, most of these neighborhood associations are nothing more than madrasas for “Usual Suspects.”  Some people join the neighborhood associations with good intentions but sooner or later most of them end up siding with the haters.

Ironically the “Usual Suspects” scream “open space” and “parks” whenever they oppose certain projects.  Yet when our residents, particularly our Latino residents, try and use existing parks and open space, the “Usual Suspects” want ordinances that prevent their Latino neighbors from doing so.  These are the same folks that support having an exclusive lawn bowling facility in a city park over open space that can be enjoyed by all of our residents.

It is time that we scour the books and look for all the other ordinances put forward by the “Usual Suspects” and the Lutz era city councils.  You can be sure that the “5-on-5” rule isn’t the only ridiculous one that we need to get rid of.  This current council owes it to the residents of Santa Ana to undo the damage caused by Lutz and company and eliminate their petty “Usual Suspect” rules and regulations.

The City Council’s Parks, Recreation, Education and Youth Committee met today at 4:30 p.m. in room 831 at City Hall, 20 Civic Center Plaza, and I am hearing that they are going to recommend that the Santa Ana City Council revise, if not abandon, the “5-on-5” rule.  Thank you Councilman Tinajero for standing up for your constituents!

By Editor

The New Santa Ana blog has been covering news, events and politics in Santa Ana since 2009.

14 thoughts on “Santa Ana City Council to revise Usual Suspects’ anti-soccer ordinance”
  1. Well done Zorro. That is an obvious blatant discrimination policy. Must have been part of the “gaytrification” efforts. just kidding. What about softball teams? 5 on 5 only?

  2. Good for Sal!

    Policies such as this one are absolutely ridiculous and I applaud his efforts in taking a closer look at it.

    Soccer is the sport of choice here in our city and it takes little more than a ball and some friends for a game, thus making it quite inexpensive for working class folks to play.

    Pick up soccer games are akin to sandlot baseball and what’s more American than sandlot baseball? Can you imagine city councils around the country placing limitations on sandlot baseball?

    Silly rule, smart move by Sal.

  3. The Park Rangers should spend more time rounding up the perverts polluting Santiago Park and less time harassing Latino’s playing soccer.

  4. Well this ordinance was a good use of city resources!!

    What are these morons thinking?

    If they hate the culture so much they could just move.

  5. I think that ordinance is a silly one, indeed. However, It does become a bit dangerous and incontinent when there are 22 soccer players running and kicking while there are other people and kids bicycling, running, or walking.

    Anyhow, many residents in Santa Ana are probably not aware of this ordinance. It is also rarely enforced. I always see large numbers of players during soccer games at the park. Recently, My partner and I were taking a jog at the park (Thornton), and some soccer dude couldn’t slow his speed while attempting to save the ball. Consequently, he abruptly rushed into my girlfriend. He got a few boo boos, but nothing serious.

  6. They need to create an ordinance that makes it illegal for five or more Anglos to drink wine in their neighbors front yards…Oh I forgot they already have such an ordinance, it’s the open container law.

    Next time Tom and Nancy decide to drink in public the cops will be called!!!

  7. It must have gone hand in hand with the fee charged to the soccer league for using the public parks as their home fields.

    Now that the coucil gave the public parks to the soccer leagues for free, the 5 on 5 rules is not needed.

  8. cook says: “Now that the coucil gave the public parks to the soccer leagues for free, the 5 on 5 rules is not needed.”

    Soccer players pay taxes too cook.

    The soccer leagues and those that play soccer are a greater representation of Santa Ana than are neighborhood associations. Its about time the council started looking out for the REAL Santa Ana.

  9. Paying taxes is not a perquisite to using the parks.

    Soccer leagues should PAY RENT to use Eddie west field and the high school fields for their business and not take away the limited parks space from the neighborhoods. The Soccer leagues are “business”.

    Pele, has you ever played Paint Ball?

    Maybe I should organize a paint ball club and start playing in the public parks. We can crowd out the neighborhood kids and families for out own personal enjoyment. And with a few dollars into the right campaign funds, we should be able to tear up the fields without needing to pay any “use / repair “fee’s too.

  10. cook,

    If my family of 7 wants to play against my friends family of 7 in a game of soccer at the park under the current rules we would be breaking the law.

    However if my family of 7 wants to play against my friends family of 7 in a game of softball or football or any other sport at the park we can legally do so.

    That law descriminates against those of us that play soccer whether we are part of a league or just part of a family.

    Your analogy of paintball is off base because paintball guns are not allowed in parks. The shoot projectiles and that is forbidden not only in Santa Ana and all other cities that I can think of.

  11. You are purposely mixing family use of the parks with adult business use to cloud the issue.

    Pop Warner, JAAF, and AYSO etc, all obtain permits for their field use and park use.

    If you want to take over a field for your personal use, get your permit. No problem.

  12. I believe the soccer ordinance is ridiculous. The parks are meant to be used for recreation, whether that means baseball, soccer, tag, or jogging. Either way, I think denying people the ability to play soccer when the number exceeds a specific number of people is in violation of their civil rights. If an organized team wants to use the park, let them reserve it and pay the fee. If it’s just a pick up game, or a group of kids that want to play, why should they be denied? It’s no different than theoretically than a group of preschool kids who meet regularly at the jungle gym. The impact may be different, but the intent is the same. The ordinance has to be concentrated on the organized type of team that meets regularly.

  13. You know what would help with these type questions.

    the notes and reasoning behind the original ordinance. An easy way to read up on the history of why the council first read it, and then second read it, and voted to pass it.

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