s
s
Sections
We don't just cover the North Bay. We live here.
Did You Know? In the first 10 days of the North Bay fire, nearly 1.5 million people used their mobile devices to visit our sites.
Already a subscriber?
iPhone
Wow! You read a lot!
Reading enhances confidence, empathy, decision-making, and overall life satisfaction. Keep it up! Subscribe.
Already a subscriber?
iPhone
Oops, you're out of free articles.
Until next month, you can always look over someone's shoulder at the coffee shop.
Already a subscriber?
iPhone
We don't just cover the North Bay. We live here.
Did You Know? In the first 10 days of the North Bay fire, we posted 390 stories about the fire. And they were shared nearly 137,000 times.
Already a subscriber?
iPhone
Supporting the community that supports us.
Obviously you value quality local journalism. Thank you.
Already a subscriber?
iPhone
Oops, you're out of free articles.
We miss you already! (Subscriptions start at just 99 cents.)
Already a subscriber?
iPhone
X

The "Follow This Story" feature will notify you when any articles related to this story are posted.

When you follow a story, the next time a related article is published — it could be days, weeks or months — you'll receive an email informing you of the update.

If you no longer want to follow a story, click the "Unfollow" link on that story. There's also an "Unfollow" link in every email notification we send you.

This tool is available only to subscribers; please make sure you're logged in if you want to follow a story.

X

Please note: This feature is available only to subscribers; make sure you're logged in if you want to follow a story.

True betrayal

EDITOR: On the surface, they are two disparate subspecies living independently. However, their inter-connectedness and evolved dependence on one another hasn’t been observed since the co-evolution of flowering plants and insects. I’m referring to Traitorius tillersonus rex and Kleptogarchia putinius vladimirosis.

One might mistake them for two fossils coincidentally discovered in the same dig, but no, they are alive and so intimately intertwined as to embarrass a Kama Sutra instructor. The survival strategies of these creatures have become perfectly aligned over the years by the universal currency of their respective food chains: oil. T. rex, former CEO of Exxon Mobile and currently king in name only, is subservient to his true leader, K. vladimirosis, who seeks to expand his range and wealth. T. rex is busy clearing the way.

Even the casual observer can no longer be forgiven for overlooking this symbiotic abomination. The evidence is available for all to see. Under the reign of T. rex, our State Department, the historical nemesis of K. vladimirosis, has become an empty shell of what it once was.

Do your own research, and you will come to the grim conclusion that T. rex isn’t working on our behalf.

MAX BYNUM

Santa Rosa

A gun safety plan

EDITOR: Since our elected officials are unwilling to take any meaningful measures to legislate sensible gun safety laws, let’s try a different approach. I propose the National Thoughts and Prayers Act.

Here’s how it would work: All guns and ammunition would be legal for purchase by any adult. Whenever anyone dies at the hand of a gun, be it by murder, accident or suicide, all gun and ammunition sales would be halted for 24 hours so that we may grieve the deceased and hold them in our thoughts and prayers. As soon as the 24-hour grief waiting period is over, we would resume gun sales, lock, bump stock and barrel.

According to the Gun Violence Archive, the number of gun deaths in 2018 so far is only 2,478. We’d be done mourning 2018 in under seven years, assuming there are no more gun deaths between now and then. We could then resume normal gun sales while preserving the Second Amendment. Problem solved.

MARYA GLASS

Cotati

A management failure

EDITOR: It is clear that Sonoma County’s emergency services department failed in its duty to adequately communicate the fire hazard to the community. But responsibility for the failure extends well beyond the department’s organizational boundaries.

As reported in recent Press Democrat articles, statements by county supervisors and senior administrative staff imply that the department manager’s decision not to utilize the wireless warning network was unknown to them. If they didn’t know, the county’s management practices and organizational culture contributed to the failure. Supervisor Shirlee Zane’s reported comment that supervisors weren’t welcome at emergency services staff meetings is further evidence of a larger problem.

Employee behavior is predominantly influenced by clearly delineated goals and responsibilities, which are established and enforced by senior management. Organizational leadership flows from the top; failures at lower levels reflect failures at the top.

The recent consumer account fraud problems at Wells Fargo Bank were perpetrated by lower-level employees, but responsibility and accountability were recognized as much broader management and cultural problems. Job losses and financial penalties were properly distributed to the highest levels of the bank.

Sonoma County needs more than an emergency services department overhaul.

BOB MELLBERG

Santa Rosa

Speaking truth to power

EDITOR: By calling out BS, a small group of traumatized teenagers has shown our nation that they are more articulate and rational about gun violence than the current occupant of the White House or leaders in Congress. Instead of planning for proms and their future, they are giving us glimmers of hope and sanity. Please support these young people any way you can.

JANET RODINA

Windsor

Making votes count

EDITOR: Peter La Follette found out months after the fact that his ballot was rejected because his signature on file didn’t match the one on his ballot (“State law on ballot signing rejected,” Thursday). One thing each of us can do immediately to ensure that our votes count is to take an objective look at our own signatures.

Over time, many signatures change due to injuries, various conditions and eyesight problems. Ours have changed considerably since we were young. I jammed a finger in a fall and can’t hold a pen the way I used to. My husband’s signature is nearly unrecognizable. So we went to the registrar of voters office and changed the signatures on our registration cards.

We sometimes drive over to the registrar’s office to turn in our ballots in person and have an employee watch as my husband signs. The staff is very patient and courteous. It’s just common sense and quicker than a lawsuit or waiting for a new bill to become law.

ROSEMARY BERGIN

Santa Rosa

Show Comment