Tuesday’s Letters to the Editor
EDITOR: Vietnam 1975, Operation Babylift. When Saigon experienced a forced evacuation just before North Vietnamese forces overtook the city, I was part of the first C-141 aircraft team that landed after the crash of the initial C-5 rescue mission. The crash killed 138 passengers and crew members, mostly children. I experienced the fear and desperation of the local citizens begging us to get them on our aircraft. It was a case of poor U.S. government planning and execution — something I hoped would never happen again. It saddens me to see our new administration repeating military errors by abandoning the peaceful citizens of Afghanistan and allowing terrorists and women-haters to take control of an entire country. Who will they attack next? This is not over.
EDITOR: It was great to read that a clear majority of Sonoma County residents support the option of allowing businesses to require vaccine verification (“Support for vaccine rules,” Sunday). Sonoma County should take the next step. Following the lead of San Francisco Mayor London Breed, the county should require proof of vaccination to enter restaurants, bars, clubs, gyms and large indoor events. Such action will help make us all safer and healthier.
EDITOR: August marks the 86th anniversary of the Social Security Act, an earned benefit that provides critical financial support to current and future generations of retirees.
Since the 1930s, seniors across our nation have relied on this program to secure the dignified retirement they deserve. In retirement, millions of seniors in our country depend on Social Security for most of their income. In our district alone, there are 140,574 Social Security beneficiaries. It’s the money they use to buy groceries, fill their gas tank and pay their bills.
Without Social Security, not only will they lose that dignified retirement they all deserve, but we will lose a key driver of our local economy, because an overwhelming number of Social Security recipients spend their monthly checks locally.
That said, Social Security is facing a real budget shortfall that requires congressional action. That’s why I am an original co-sponsor of the Social Security 2100 Act. This legislation would help increase the program’s longevity and ensure Social Security remains strong for our kids and grandkids.
We must continue to fight to ensure Social Security continues to fulfill its promise to men and women who worked hard, played by the rules and paid into the system all their lives.
REP. MIKE THOMPSON
A scientific revolution
EDITOR: Just as science is undergoing an astonishing revolution in its ability to treat diseases and perhaps even save the environment, anti-vaxxers and their fellow travelers are undermining these efforts. The protein folding problem that has stymied scientists for decades is being rapidly solved. That, along with the revolution in custom protein production, promises big successes in the fight against disease, disabilities and even the effects of aging. But anti-science forces continue to keep us chained to the miserable world that sees life through the lens of rigid ideologies, magical thinking and pseudoscience nonsense.
Taxes vs philanthropy
EDITOR: I’m always amazed by the mess that our federal government can come up with. Joe Biden, Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi and the Democratic legions are pushing for $3.5 trillion for infrastructure improvements for a bunch of things that have nothing to do with infrastructure. Oh, sure, citizens will get a pittance for roads, bridges, planes, trains and dead battery automobiles from the first infrastructure bill. Nothing for the middle class with the next one, though.
Biden and his cohorts claim that higher taxes on the rich and corporations will pay for it. Corporations pass on taxes to consumers, so we get stuck with another tax hike.
I was fortunate enough to take my family to the Oakland Zoo recently. While watching the kids take photos of the elephants and other animals, I looked at a plaque thanking private donors and corporations for financial support. There were plaques in other spots, all saying the same thing.
Obviously, private citizens care enough to maintain the health of the animals (many on the endangered list) and want to help citizens enjoy the zoo. And Biden wants to take more from them? Strange thing, though, I never saw the name of a state or federal politician on any plaque.
EDITOR: Oh, the irony. Bill Gallaher says his reason for pursuing a recall of District Attorney Jill Ravitch is that she “repeatedly abused her powers to pursue personal vendettas.” This is the man who has a spare million or so to try to destroy a woman for doing her job, which in this case included suing Gallaher’s company for morally corrupt treatment of the elderly at Villa Capri. Please reject this blatant attempt to buy the legal system to do his “personal vendetta” bidding. Vote no and send a clear message: We are a county that will not let bullies prevail.
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