No threat from oysters
EDITOR: Chris Kuhn (“Time to move on,” Letters, Tuesday) said that he appreciates the Department of Interior’s efforts to keep his land and water as clean and natural as possible (“Oyster bid rebuffed,” July 1). Apparently he does not realize that the oysters would not survive if the water wasn’t clean.
Point Reyes joined the national park system 53 years ago. All of the owners of the oyster farm, the present and former ones both, have provided employment and good food to the people of this area for 40 years. Why is Drakes Bay Oyster Co. suddenly a threat to the environment? Kuhn needs to take another look at who is really suppressing who.
NANCY HOLMES WATSON
Sheriff must act
EDITOR: District Jill Attorney Ravitch concluded that the facts supported the perception of Deputy Erick Gelhaus that a 5-foot-2 13-year-old walking in a field with a perceived weapon represented an imminent threat to his life. Gelhaus fired eight shots within seconds of perceiving this threat, resulting in Andy Lopez’s death. This is how Gelhaus responded, despite his many years of experience as a deputy and in the military.
The incident didn’t occur at a school or a crowded public place with potential danger to others. The perceived danger was to this experienced deputy outfitted in body armor.
Accepting Ravitch’s conclusion, one wonders about the state of mind that formed this perception. Questions concerning Gelhaus’ mental state and fitness for duty arise. I would urge Sheriff Steve Freitas to show leadership and address the issue.
This level of response seems far from appropriate, and although apparently not criminal, I believe that Freitas could send a strong message to the community by dismissing Gelhaus, demonstrating that his actions aren’t indicative of what generally is a fine group of officers.
Strong leadership was shown by the Board of Supervisors in creating the task force on gun violence, and the sheriff needs to lead by condemning the actions of this deputy in a consequential way.
BARRY D. HIRSCH
EDITOR: I read that President Barack Obama wants an appropriation of $3.7 billion for assistance to the migrants. Do we really need to spend that amount of money?
I am sure that there are many recently closed military bases that could be rendered useful. The Army could deploy a battalion to assist these migrants while they await processing for proper deportation. We already pay these members of the armed forces, so the only cost would be feeding and housing, which would be markedly less the $3.7 billion.
For those who feel this is the wrong direction, I can only ask, Where does it stop and at what cost?
EDITOR: The inequality of donations and volunteering at local schools should come as no surprise, as open enrollment allows students to change schools at will, and those parents take resources with them (“Donations to SR schools vary widely,” July 5).
The French American Immersion School raised $61,000 this year while Brook Hill Elementary raised $176. The French school has an organic chef with an annual salary of about $95,300 of taxpayer money (“Chef to fix lunch for French charter school kids,” May 23, 2013) while Brook Hill students are mostly free-lunch recipients.