s
s
Sections
Search
We don't just cover the North Bay. We live here.
Did You Know? In the first 10 days of the North Bay fire, nearly 1.5 million people used their mobile devices to visit our sites.
Already a subscriber?
iPhone
Wow! You read a lot!
Reading enhances confidence, empathy, decision-making, and overall life satisfaction. Keep it up! Subscribe.
Already a subscriber?
iPhone
Oops, you're out of free articles.
Until next month, you can always look over someone's shoulder at the coffee shop.
Already a subscriber?
iPhone
We don't just cover the North Bay. We live here.
Did You Know? In the first 10 days of the North Bay fire, we posted 390 stories about the fire. And they were shared nearly 137,000 times.
Already a subscriber?
iPhone
Supporting the community that supports us.
Obviously you value quality local journalism. Thank you.
Already a subscriber?
iPhone
Oops, you're out of free articles.
We miss you already! (Subscriptions start at just 99 cents.)
Already a subscriber?
iPhone
X

The "Follow This Story" feature will notify you when any articles related to this story are posted.

When you follow a story, the next time a related article is published — it could be days, weeks or months — you'll receive an email informing you of the update.

If you no longer want to follow a story, click the "Unfollow" link on that story. There's also an "Unfollow" link in every email notification we send you.

This tool is available only to subscribers; please make sure you're logged in if you want to follow a story.

Login

X

Please note: This feature is available only to subscribers; make sure you're logged in if you want to follow a story.

LoginSubscribe

The voters’ choice

EDITOR: I’ve been hearing a lot about the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency. First I heard what a terrible job it was doing at the border, separating children from their parents. Then I heard the clarion call for ICE to be disbanded. Disbanding or, as some in Congress have suggested, reorganizing it isn’t a good idea.

When you call a company’s 800 number and get a person who can’t do what you request because it’s against company policy, you shouldn’t take it out on the person. They’re only doing what they were told to do. The same goes for the Internal Revenue Service or your local police. They’re following the law as prescribed.

The problem lies with the people who make the laws — Congress — and the person who sends the edicts — the president. Granted, there may have been a little zealousness on ICE’s part in carrying out the laws and edicts, but in the long run it isn’t their fault.

Look to your representatives and the president to change laws and policies that ICE and other agencies have to follow. If they aren’t doing what you want, vote them out. If you think they’re doing what they should, vote them back in. Either way, the ball is in your court. Be careful what you ask for.

MICHAEL THARIN

Rohnert Park

Raise minimum wage

EDITOR: That we have a housing crisis is obvious: Almost 3,000 homeless, housing construction taking years and some renters paying 50 percent of income for rent. Polls show that many residents can’t afford to live here.

What’s to be done? A Saturday headline — “HUD staying on the sidelines” — makes clear that we will receive no help from the Trump administration. Columnist David Brooks believes that solving problems at the local level is the only answer (“The time has come for a ‘localist’ revolution,” July 24).

Raising the local minimum wage would make rent more affordable. Martin J. Bennett (“Give renters a floor and a ceiling,” Close to Home, July 5) makes a powerful case for rent control and raising the local minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2020. Think of this increase as partial compensation for three decades of wage stagnation. If wages had kept pace with inflation and productivity gains, the minimum wage today would be well over $20 an hour.

Do you wish that you could do something to relieve our housing catastrophe? Contact our Santa Rosa City Council members and urge them to raise the minimum wage for Santa Rosa.

GENE A. HOTTEL

Santa Rosa

Trump’s farm aid

EDITOR: Let’s see if I get this right. Donald Trump, with his tariffs, has raised the price of many of the things we buy. The retaliatory tariffs from our trading partners are hurting American farmers. Trump proposes to ease the farmers’ pain by giving them some more of our money (“Trump to pay farmers $12 billion,” July 25).

Am I missing something?

PHIL MITCHELL

Santa Rosa

No-grow zone needed

EDITOR: Sonoma County Supervisor Susan Gorin wants to bring illegal marijuana grows from the shadows and make them legal, hence the push to issue permits despite numerous violations by the county of its own regulations.

This strategy has a major flaw: Many grow sites are located in remote mountainous areas (previously to hide from detection), accessed by narrow winding roads, have high fire danger, have no water supply for this water-intensive crop and feed contaminated drainage into our creeks. Topping it off, grow sites are readily visible on Google Earth, allowing criminals to target crops and cash-rich sites (they can’t use FDIC-insured banks) and putting innocent residents at risk of home invasion.

Encouraging commercial cannabis growing in unincorporated areas is completely wrong. There should be no grows in water-scarce, fire-prone remote areas. Last October’s fires offered a scary firsthand example of the danger this causes, with pot growers harvesting their crop bordering Hood Mountain Park and interfering with firefighters working gallantly to save our parks and homes.

Ask county supervisors to stop all cannabis growing in unincorporated areas and not to cave to influential growers to reduce park setbacks. Attend the Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday to make your voice be heard.

DEBORAH EPPSTEIN

Santa Rosa

Killing wild animals

EDITOR: I was deeply saddened to read about the killing of P6, the young mountain lion in Kenwood (“Mountain lion reported killed,” Tuesday). I find it disturbing that we have so little respect for wildlife, and we resort to killing any wild animal that has come into “our” space.

The reality is that we share our neighborhoods, our land and our planet with many wild animals. We need to learn to live well with them, not eradicate them and punish them for our lack of vigilance.

As a farm animal sanctuary owner, I am responsible for hundreds of animals’ lives. I love and respect all animals, and I take responsibility for making sure those in my care are secured every night and safe from harm. That responsibility exists with anyone who owns captive animals.

It’s a shame that this mountain lion was just trying to live and to eat in a time when their homes (just like many of ours) have been burned, and they are forced to seek new ones. It is so incredibly sad that we have chosen to punish this wild animal (and his sister last year) for its natural behavior by taking its life. Shame on us.

DEBORAH BLUM

Santa Rosa

Show Comment