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Nobody wins a war

EDITOR: If soldiers die on the battlefield, both sides suffer the same kind of losses.

If civilians die when cities are bombed, both sides suffer the same kind of losses.

If North Korea’s Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump are unable to come to an agreement, both sides in that war will suffer the same kind of losses.

I’m a wounded World War II veteran, and I’ve seen many casualties on the battlefield. The pain and suffering experienced by these humans is the same kind of hurt both sides would receive from their mothers who have lost sons.

Does anybody win in a war? I don’t think so.

CHUCK GALLETTA

Novato

Guiding lights

EDITOR: A friend of mine and her husband lost their home in the Tubbs fire.

They have found a house to rent in Healdsburg. When I visited recently she gave me a tour. The house was furnished and comfortable. As we walked the rooms she pointed out to me what additions had been donated by local merchants and/or discounted. She has filled their new home with tiny white lights, which give her a feeling of hope. We chatted about how we love the lights that decorate our homes, our businesses and our community streets this time of year.

We would like to ask that, if possible, keep your lights on a bit longer this year to guide us out of the darkness and into the light of spring.

Happy New Year.

BARBARA YUNGERT

Santa Rosa

Sonoma transit options

EDITOR: The elimination of bus service between Napa and Sonoma reduces the transit options for Sonoma Valley residents to a disheartening level (“Napa bus route to Sonoma ending,” Tuesday).

With the cancellation of Vine Route 25, connections to East Bay locations, the Vallejo Ferry, Sacramento and Amtrak are no longer available. Commute-time only routes to San Rafael and Petaluma remain the only options for trips south. Existing service to Santa Rosa takes 75-80 minutes each way.

There is much that could have been done to save the Napa-Sonoma route. Despite traveling on Sonoma County roads for 5-plus miles, riders could only board at the Sonoma Plaza location. The bus normally used was unmarked, without Vine livery. Despite the claims of Vine officials, no marketing was apparent; no newspaper ads, no posted schedules, no billboards, no outreach. The only indication that the service existed was the small sign at the Plaza bus stop.

Regional transit options are important and vital. Unfortunately, instead of promoting and improving public transit opportunities, officials have decided that driving is the only option. Sonoma is once again a transit wasteland.

ALEXANDER McMAHON

Sonoma

The gift of drills

EDITOR: This winter season let’s all give one another the gift of emergency drills. Just like in school when we’d line up on the playground or cover our necks under the desk. Drills help us prepare for the inevitable, and the more we are prepared the greater our chances for survival. It isn’t just for children.

So every quarter in 2018 and beyond, with family, friends and neighbors, choose a time, remind one another and practice for an earthquake or house fire or when your neighborhood might be in danger. We now know it can happen.

Check out the websites shakeout.org and preparednessmama.com for examples of how to prepare. Then plan for at least 72 hours without power, food or fresh water. We can do it. How about tonight?

MARSHA TAYLOR

Santa Rosa

Enlightening the left

EDITOR: With Roy Moore’s defeat in the Alabama Senate election and President Donald Trump’s tanking approval ratings, we expose the right’s misreading of America on the questions of jobs, taxation, women’s rights, the Affordable Care Act and more. Now the Salt Lake Tribune says Sen. Orrin Hatch shouldn’t run again because he stood with Trump on scaling back national monuments.

The petulant attempt to erase every aspect of the Obama presidency is backfiring. When Republicans come after Social Security and Medicare, I hope it’s the last straw for voters.

Does the blame for our condition lie on the Democrats who didn’t vote in 2016? Those who couldn’t bring themselves to pull the lever for Hillary Clinton? Politicians aren’t “all the same,” and now we know why it’s fake news to suggest they are.

The left outnumbers the right in practically every precinct in the country. Witness that a Democrat can even win in Alabama. We simply must show up and vote. Maybe after the 2018 and 2020 elections, I can thank Trump for enlightening the left. I can only hope his presidency imprints us for a long, long time. I never want to feel this dread again.

BOB MARKETOS

Petaluma

A note of caution

EDITOR: No good deed goes unpunished. I’ll have to admit that I have not followed the exact particulars in this story, but on the surface it seems a beloved teacher was reprimanded for non-permitted use of school property for the purpose of feeding fire victims (“Santa Rosa culinary program leader put on leave,” Dec. 20). What’s there to argue about? On the surface, nothing. Dig a little deeper, plenty.

Unfortunately, our litigious society has made it nearly impossible to do random acts of kindness. If the food truck were to be damaged, stolen or involved in an accident, the school’s insurance would probably not cover it. If somebody got sick from donated food that harbored salmonella or some other contamination you can bet your sweet bippy that some ambulance-chasing lawyer would find grounds to sue.

Just a thought.

ANISA THOMSEN

Petaluma

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