Sunday’s Letters to the Editor
Trump and Obama
EDITOR: According to recent polling, an overwhelming majority of Republicans approve of Donald Trump’s handling of the manufactured border crises, which includes a threat to use emergency powers to build his vanity wall. I find this interesting, since a similar overwhelming majority of Republicans were highly critical of President Barack Obama for his much more restrained use of executive orders to resolve contentious issues.
Still, I prefer to look on the bright side. If Trump does invoke emergency powers to build a wall, it may turn out to be a blessing in disguise. For example, if the next Democratic president decides to use emergency powers to respond to the real and existential threat of climate change, right-wingers won’t be able to say a thing about it.
Thompson’s real motive?
EDITOR: Rep. Mike Thompson’s universal background check bill is interesting because his constituents have had this law for years (“Thompson fights guns,” Jan. 9). It didn’t stop mass shootings here, and it wouldn’t have done anything to stop mass shootings nationally. Gabby Giffords was standing at his side, but her deranged shooter passed a background check.
Then what is Thompson up to? Our founding documents were clear that our rights don’t come from government. Government power comes from the consent of the governed. You were born with your rights; the government can protect them or take them away.
The Bill of Rights included the right to bear arms as a checks and balance. The old axiom is a natural law: “When government expands, liberty must contract.” Government and regulations have been expanding at an exponential rate.
Note that those who want to tax and regulate you hate gun rights. The courts haven’t helped them. A pivotal point in gutting the Second Amendment is to have all gun sales go through government. Include this with the recent adoption by many states to confiscate guns without due process and you are set to pull the fangs from the Bill of Rights when needed.
There are things to be done about mass shootings, but passing a bill that only law-abiding people will follow isn’t one of them.
EDITOR: Burbank Housing’s purchase of a Rincon Valley apartment complex is a clear demonstration that unfettered capitalism has failed us in this crucial area (“Long-term availability,” Jan. 10).
The gouging we see around us in both sales and rental prices shows that the market does not self-regulate. The profit incentive is too often mixed up with greed and a race to ensure that one doesn’t miss out on the golden goose.
If one landlord raises rents, others feel they are missing out on profits, and a self-fortifying loop ensues where rents grow with no other real reason for rent increases.
Something like what Burbank Housing is doing in Santa Rosa and what PEP Housing is doing in Petaluma shows that reasonable rents can be maintained as a long-term housing strategy, and quality doesn’t have to suffer. All it takes is the right vision, a good plan and community backing.
Kudos to the Santa Rosa Housing Authority for helping fund this project. Let’s see if other communities can increase their investment in their own future.