Sunday’s Letters to the Editor

Press Democrat readers comment on electric cars, and more.|

Case for electric cars

EDITOR: Can we please have a rational discussion regarding banning of new gasoline stations by some municipalities in Sonoma County?

First, aren’t there already enough stations in the county? Our population growth rate has been 0.1% for several years. I don’t recall (gas shortages aside) having to wait in line. And as electric vehicle adoption rates increase, there will be less need for gas stations.

Second, many argue that electric vehicles are too expensive. Presently that’s true. The average cost is about $65,000 compared to $40,000 for a gas-powered vehicle. But with incentives, that narrows the difference significantly. Furthermore, most electric vehicle makers started with luxury models to fund the cost of producing less-expensive vehicles. More “inexpensive” models are on the way — the Chevy Bolt is less than $35,000. As battery technology improves, the price difference should be more in favor of electric cars.

Lastly, one complaint is concern about power outages and charging. Most electric vehicles can be charged during off-hours, and when the power is out, gas stations can’t dispense gas.



American democracy

EDITOR: If ever there has been a time where the choices are clear about the leadership and direction of this great county, it is now. The future of what kind of nation this will be is on the line. Our elected president gave a speech telling Americans that the foundation of democracy is being challenged by extremism on the right.

At the same time, the former president was announcing that if he were to be elected again, he will pardon and even offer an apology to persons found guilty of storming the Capitol and killing Capitol police officers.

He is making clear that violence to obtain his goals will be fully supported. The GOP philosophy now is that elections are either won or stolen; there is no more losing and acknowledging that fact. I for one will do all in my power to prevent a repeat of 2016. However, with the volume of crimes that Donald Trump is being investigated for, his reelection attempt is in serious jeopardy.



Lawns don’t lie

EDITOR: If your lawn is green, we can conclusively conclude that you have irresponsibly wasted water. In a severe drought, your conduct hurts us all. The city of Santa Rosa should impose a hefty fine on every property owner with a green lawn (except the artificial ones). The lawn does not lie.


Santa Rosa

Statue controversies

EDITOR: In 2013, I crocheted massive winter earflap hats for the two Grandfather statues across from Santa Rosa City Hall. The Press Democrat did a story, and the response was great. Hundreds of people took pictures of the Grandfathers in their woolen caps and posted them on social media. In 2017, I crocheted two large pink pussycat hats for the Grandfathers.

But just like Rasta Charlie, it only took one complaint that the hats were a smear on the Korean people, who gifted the statues to Santa Rosa. Apparently, she didn’t know that on Jeju Island the stone Grandfathers are often decorated with colorful hats, scarves and flower necklaces. I was instructed to remove the hats by the city manager. Furthermore, if city staff were to see any decorations on the Grandfathers, those would be removed. Two years ago, several people created masks for the statues when COVID put us all under lockdown. The masks were removed the next morning.

In the end, the Grandfathers continue to hold sentry but never to be decorated, and Rasta Charlie is relegated to the backroom. It’s sad that one person can ruin the fun for everyone else.


Santa Rosa

Fire trust financials

EDITOR: The Fire Victims’ Trust could vastly increase its transparency by releasing audited financial statements. The trust owes an accounting to survivors of the fires. I recommend that William Abrams, who has successfully litigated for more financial information, go back and ask for release of the audited financial statements. This document will shed a lot of light on the spending.

Any entity in charge of $13.5 billion must have financial statements. The Fire Victims Trust should do the right thing and release its financial statements.

My family is a victim of the 2017 Nuns Canyon Fire. Our house and all our belongings burned to the ground. We moved back into our house three months ago, almost five years after the fire. We have received a pittance from the trust so far. The hardship has been great.

I find it disgusting that we, like everybody I know whose home burned, have received so little while the administrators of the trust seemingly feed at the trough. Transparency would go a long way.



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