EDITOR: It recently came to my attention that only one member of the City Council lives on the west side of Santa Rosa. As an occupant of the west side myself, I was disappointed by the lack of representation for myself and my neighbors. But I was pleased to see the possibility of district elections in place of at-large elections (“SR moves toward elections by district,” Thursday).
More than 30 percent of Santa Rosa’s population is Latino, and the majority of local Latinos live on the west side. But their representation in city government is weak. Shouldn’t they have a voice as well as the rest of the city?
One reason for a lack of Latino representation is that the cost of running for City Council is too much, and west side occupants are generally less affluent in comparison with the rest of the city. Government shouldn’t be about who is wealthier but about representing the people — all the people.
Why shouldn’t the council make the switch? If this allows the entirety of Santa Rosa to be represented, shouldn’t it be worth the process of making the change?
You may find me at the next public council meeting to see the progress on this issue.
Art, not history
EDITOR: This is in response to Bruce Johnson’s letter equating the removal of confederate statues with erasing history (“Erasing history,” Monday). Statues aren’t history, they’re expressions of art. History is fact (or should be), while what constitutes good art is constantly evolving with society.
Time marches on. After 167 years, it’s time — time to accept the fact that the war that almost tore our country apart wasn’t an honorable time, and the architects of it shouldn’t be glorified in art. Taking down these statues isn’t malice toward these men, as Johnson suggests. It’s merely saying they belong in history books where our children can learn the simple facts of this war, and they should no longer be depicted in one person’s opinion of art. They’re just statues, not undeniable facts. They’re not even great art.
As for blowing up the pyramids because they were built with slave labor, I think we can agree that some art stands on its own merit.
EDITOR: My wise and beautiful friend Amity Hotchkiss made a declaration this past Saturday as we were driving with hordes of people through the town of Bodega Bay to beat the heat. She said that we shouldn’t call it “climate change” anymore. We need to start calling it “climate changed.” Because it did, and we haven’t.
Labor Day blues
EDITOR: According to Thomas Hobbes, life in the state of nature was “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short.” It was man against man and survival of the fittest. Our ancestors decided that giving up all their natural rights to gain a semblance of equity and an opportunity for individual development and social cooperation was worth it.
In the state of nature, the largest and strongest man had the advantage, whereas today the man with the greatest fortune rules. Our political, social and economic leaders are the “strong men” today. The rest of us are merely worker bees who build the hive determined by others.