Ryan hasn't learned

EDITOR: Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan just doesn't get it, even after his Republican Party lost the November election. Speaking at the National Review Institute's conference on the future of conservatism, Ryan insisted that Republicans must reject President Barack Obama's attempts to move the country forward, presumably as a way of accusing him four years from now of not accomplishing anything ("Ryan: GOP must be united against Obama," Jan. 27).

The American people have had quite enough of this oppositional attitude. We want a House and Senate that work with the White House for the country, not against its president. This is a lesson Mitt Romney failed to learn in 2012, and it seems his running mate has not yet learned it as we begin 2013.



Unequal treatment

EDITOR: It's interesting (and telling) that the female members of the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors want parity for our female youthful offenders, while the males, after "agonizing," all voted for fewer classes and less professional, cheaper counselors for females ("Vote delayed on Sierra Center," Wednesday). Discrimination is wrong. Period.



Cast your vote

EDITOR: Thank you for your coverage of the Boy Scouts' potential policy change, which would allow troops to consider ending discrimination based on sexual orientation. While the policy change put forward does not take a strong enough stand against discrimination, as Steven Cozza stated, "I do think it's a start" ("Scouts' shift on gays 'a start,' " Thursday).

It was heartening to read that our local BSA organization has led and influenced this proposed policy shift.

Boy Scouts of America is accepting public input prior to a Feb. 6 board meeting. Please call (972) 580-2330; I did, and it took less than a minute. A representative will ask that you state whether you are for or against the policy, and with that one word, you've made a difference.



Dictatorship rising

EDITOR: So, now we reveal the lack of understanding (ignorance?) of two city councils. Why is it that nobody ever learns from history? Never has a ban or limitation of weapons for the citizens at large resulted in a decrease in criminal usage, except in a total dictatorship.

Add to that the fact that the Second Amendment wasn't placed there for the sake of hunting ducks, rather for the purpose of protecting the citizenry at large from a government gone rogue. It should be obvious for any thinking person that the reason for gun restriction is to make it easier for the government to control its citizens.

I predict that there will be some event in the near future to encourage the imposition of martial law and the suspension of the Constitution, accompanied by a roundup of private weapons. When that happens, the dictatorship will be right behind. Wake up. It can happen here. It is happening here, right now.



Proven effective

EDITOR: Hurrah for the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors and Dr. Lynn Silver-Chalfin for doing something positive to help prevent the most common chronic disease in our children: dental decay. For more than 25?years, I've seen how this disease damages teeth. As my colleague Greg Mlynarczyk stated ("Children's dental health," Letters, Jan. 2), community water fluoridation has been studied for more than a half-century, scientifically proven to be safe and cost-effective and successfully implemented in many municipal areas.

Unfortunately, some communities fail to take advantage of this public health success when the anti-fluoridation fear-peddlers scare the public into inaction and deny the average citizen the benefits of community fluoride. Over the years, this crowd tried to link fluoride to rickets, Down syndrome and even AIDS. Their latest scare: lower IQ scores.

I consider myself a "small government" guy, with a libertarian point of view on many issues, but I recognize my freedoms aren't threatened by common sense concepts like stop lights, fire codes and required hand washing. I try to keep an open mind and follow the principles of the scientific method, which lets reality speak for itself. It's time for the good people of Sonoma County and their representatives to act in their own best interests and do something proactive about tooth decay.


Santa Rosa

Kerry coverage

EDITOR: David Leibert's letter ("Media hypocrites," Friday) left me to wonder if he was such a keen media observer during the 2004 presidential race. If so, he must have noticed that the media establishment gave then-Sen. John Kerry a pretty thorough examination regarding his financial holdings and activities.

I can recall seeing coverage of both his and his heiress wife's family fortunes. There was also significant reporting on the senator's sailboat being registered and moored in a Rhode Island marina so as to avoid tax liability in Massachusetts.

Mitt Romney's stock and trade was in leveraging distressed companies well beyond their value and liquidating them at their highest point of value. This process left many thousands of American workers without jobs.

Shocked as we may be by what some would consider hypocritical demonization, it's patently unfair to deny the weight of the moral components that color this issue.

Fairness in media is mostly observed in a subjective context. There's no substitute for accuracy — facts are facts.