Tuesday’s Letters to the Editor

Press Democrat readers comment on changing Kelseyville’s name, and more.|

Righting historical wrong

EDITOR: The group Citizens for Healing wants to change the name of Kelseyville to Konocti due to atrocities Andrew Kelsey committed against Native Americans in the early days of California (“What is in a name?” Feb. 18). An opposing group, Save the Name of Kelseyville, believes the name change won’t make a difference. The reality of past events can’t be altered, but the community can refuse to tolerate what Kelsey’s name represents. Names are not neutral; they are directly connected to power and privilege.

For decades, many people were unaware of the atrocities suffered by Native Californians, Black miners, Chinese laborers and others whose bodies and labor were appropriated for profit. Books like “California, a Slave State” by Jean Pfaelzer provide the untold stories of people who lived through slavery and appropriation from the mid-1800s to the present. The cat is out of the bag. Stories cannot be untold, events cannot be undone, but we can take steps to right historical wrongs.

ELIZABETH EVANS

Santa Rosa

Who is incompetent?

EDITOR: There’s this guy running for president who confuses Nikki Haley with Nancy Pelosi. He also thinks Viktor Orban, who is president of Hungary, is president of Turkey. He’s worried that our current president could get us into World War II. He bragged about how many funerals of our military members he attended. He said he went to many, many, many funerals. He actually went to four. No, it’s not Joe Biden, it’s Donald Trump.

Special counsel Robert Hur wrote a hit piece on Biden. Usually when there’s an investigation and no criminal charges are brought, a one- or two-page summary is given by the Justice Department. Hur wrote 388 pages about Biden who, by the way, did not have any charges brought against him, and what Hur said was pretty cruel.

Hur interviewed Biden while Biden was in the midst of a political crisis with Hamas having just attacked Israel. I think we are fortunate to have Biden as our president. He has done a terrific job, even if the media refuses to report it. I’m voting for him, and I hope you will. Also, Trump is dangerous, he’s unhinged, and he is utterly and completely incompetent.

CONNIE KELLOGG

Sebastopol

Reasons to read

EDITOR: On Feb. 16, you made the lives of those who read the paper, near and far, brighter with your coverage of Paul Miller’s good deeds (“The guerrilla gardener,”). Not only that but various reads like Sonoma County reflections, Bob Padecky’s views, Feast and gardening coverage, letters to the editor and so many other opinion writers have kept us as continuous subscribers. Thanks for doing your part to add to an informed and rich life.

J.D. COPPER

Gold Beach, Oregon

Red flags for fire tax

EDITOR: Everyone wants to be safe from fire and appreciates the lifesaving work of courageous firefighters. But Measure H raises red flags:

— The new half-cent sales tax would apply to all county residents regardless of location or ability to pay.

— If approved by a simple majority of voters, it would be a forever tax until recalled by voters. By contrast, the existing quarter-cent open space sales tax must be reapproved by two-thirds of voters.

— Ninety-five percent of wildfires that devastate human lives and property are wind-driven, caused by flying embers. Home-hardening and maintenance of defensible space are the most effective response. Clearing vegetation beyond 100 feet can exacerbate fires by opening the way for flying embers, drying out soils and allowing flammable weeds to take hold. Even Cal Fire now doubts the efficacy of vegetation management to halt wind-driven fires. Measure H mentions vegetation management 24 times, but home hardening, not once.

Measure H would supplement existing funding. The county already receives and spends millions on vegetation management via several different departments. The public deserves to see how existing fire resilience funds are being spent, before voting for more.

JENNY BLAKER

Cotati

Hospital ships for Gaza

EDITOR: It is getting impossible to turn on the evening news without getting sick seeing the documentation of thousands of dead in Gaza, especially over 7,000 children. I served in Vietnam about the hospital ship USS Sanctuary. The conflict in Gaza reminds me of this service. In Vietnam, we used body counts to demonstrate progress.

I write to propose that the Navy send our hospital ships to the waters off Gaza. No tunnels, no command-and-control centers, no arms supplies or rockets, no excuses. Send the USNS Comfort and the USNS Mercy to the Mediterranean Sea. For them, it would be good training and an introduction to compassion for children caught in the middle of a war. It sends a different message than two aircraft carrier strike groups.

Please contact Sen. Alex Padilla and Sen. LaPhonza Butler and ask them to pressure the Navy to send the hospital ships.

DENNIS HARDLE

Petaluma

You can send letters to the editor to letters@pressdemocrat.com.

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