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Shelter firing

EDITOR: There are some real problems with our county, but the animal shelter isn’t one of them. For the past decade, I have witnessed only positive changes. Yet we have seen two directors fired in the 11th hour (“County animal shelter chief fired,” Wednesday). Baffling.

A couple weeks back there was a report that the shelter was too hot. The allegation was, fortunately, false. The individual used an instrument that measures the temperature where it is pointed. Yes, the roof may have been 102, but it’s not logical that an open-air, concrete facility could be that hot considering the day’s high was only 89 degrees.

The latest figures show an 85 percent live-release rate. This is amazing for a county shelter that is responsible for taking in all stray, sick, injured and pregnant animals. This agency doesn’t pick and choose what it will house, treat and re-home.

Don’t misunderstand: the Sonoma Humane Society does great work, but it is in another league. Any time you have a no-kill shelter, you will likely find a county shelter nearby, mopping up after society not doing its part.

This is baffling decision. The last thing the dedicated staff and volunteers need is yet another distraction.


Rio Nido

Werewolves and witches

EDITOR: “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself — nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror.” That is a quote from FDR’s first inaugural address in 1933.

Go on, Healdsburg, be brave, be fearless, be plucky. Erect those roundabouts proudly, and “never retreat into that nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror that paralyzes” certain unnecessarily fearful drivers who probably badmouthed the inception of the Internet and the death of the rotary phone.

Remember, Healdsburg: Roundabouts are only dangerous on nights with a full moon when werewolves, witches and vampires convene on them. So don’t stop at a roundabout at night to ask a werewolf directions, and you’ll be fine.



The ISIS threat

EDITOR: Trudy Rubin’s Aug. 25 column (“Tell public the truth about this threat”) should be required reading for everyone who voted for our current president. The American people deserve a leader who is going to truly lead and protect us from radical Islamic terrorists — both abroad and in our own homeland. This threat is not new. It has been building over the course of several years. The time to strategize and act is now — and not by downplaying the threat as “JV team” terrorists. Further, one doesn’t accomplish this on the golf course.



Policing our streets

EDITOR: Sunil Dutta (“If you don’t want to get hurt don’t challenge me,” Aug. 23) pretty much said it all, but I would like to add a few thoughts:

Where did people get the idea that a police officer signs on to be a kamikaze?

Our police departments are, and always have been, paramilitary forces.

The risk of more profound error is associated with the acceptance of great responsibility.

Just about all of these cases where the police are dammed if they do and dammed if they don’t are about people at the bottom of the socio-economic ladder who, due to a lack of resources, feel angry and frustrated. To them, the police are the tangible and accessible symbols of the establishment that, they believe, keeps them trapped.

It would be better for community leaders, educators, clergy and social workers to organize them in voting, forming unions and promoting education rather than promulgating the idea that the police are enemies. These communities receive, by far, the greater percentage of police services.

As a Sonoma County resident since 1970, I believe Deputy Erick Gelhaus did nothing wrong, and he is exactly who I want patrolling our streets.



Nuclear danger

EDITOR: After the surprise earthquake in Napa, no one paying even the least attention to the ongoing crisis in Fukushima could fail to connect some dots to Diablo Canyon. The fault line causing Napa’s shakeup had been previously undetected. What unmapped hazards near San Luis Obispo could threaten the nuclear facility there?

Michael Peck, a senior inspector for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, is recommending that Diablo Canyon be shut down while earthquake dangers are re-evaluated “Expert calls for nuclear-plant closure,” Tuesday). PG&E is balking, and the NRC is not insisting. How and why are these institutions allowed to gamble with the lives and health of our state’s citizens? Diablo Canyon faces the greatest seismic threat in the nation. It’s far from inconceivable that undetected faults, both on and offshore, could add up to a megaquake, resulting in a disastrous nuclear meltdown.

I strongly suggest that we Californians act vigorously on our own behalf and demand that Diablo Canyon be permanently shut down.



A new subsidy?

EDITOR: Santa Rosa lowers its fees for water and sewer hookups (“City cuts developer fees for water, sewer access,” Wednesday). Is the water we save subsidizing new development? Is toilet-to-tap in our future? I think you can figure it out.


Santa Rosa

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