Sunday’s Letters to the Editor

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Suing the victims

EDITOR: I’ve been reading about how some parents and students who applied to various admissions programs at the University of California, Stanford (and perhaps other schools) are suing those schools because certain rich parents got their kids into these schools under fraudulent conditions.

But it appears that the accused parents and the accused who aided such undeserving students went through all sorts of gyrations and manipulations to get those kids into the universities of their choice. That implies that the universities didn’t admit such students knowing that the students were lacking in merit and were snookered themselves.

So if anybody should be sued, it’s the rich parents who helped create such fraud, not the universities. By the plaintiffs not having enough common sense to understand the situation only indicates to me that perhaps these same plaintiff students (and, indirectly, this includes their parents) weren’t bright enough in the first place to be considered by the universities in question.


Santa Rosa

Run for office

EDITOR: I took a Democratic Party poll. One question said check boxes for three issues most important to me. I was surprised and disappointed to see that “halting endless wars” wasn’t one of the choices. “Fighting terror” was. What happened to this party that it drags its feet on opposing war, single-payer health care or a Green New Deal?

The answer, of course, is donations from weapons manufacturers, drug and insurance companies and oil companies. Corporate donations have undermined our system and blocked change for decades. That’s why we’re having a progressive political revolution. Our congressman, for instance, isn’t on the wrong side of these issues, but he isn’t working for them. Instead he works on container protocol bills, winery tax breaks and post office name changes.

For a couple years, Democrats had control of the federal government, but because donors prevented them from prosecuting Wall Street fraudsters, pulling out of Afghanistan or doing anything significant about inequality, they lost traction.

Establishment politicians only provide incremental change. We need real change now. We don’t have time for political games. We have problems at every level. Please run for office. Any office. City council, supervisor, school board. We, the people, are the change we’ve been waiting for.


Democratic candidate for Congress, 5th District

Dangerous streets

EDITOR: When we moved here 19 years ago, I visited the AAA office to obtain a car insurance quote. I was greeted with, “Welcome to the pedestrian-killing capital of the United States.”

Not long ago, The Press Democrat’s editorial was headlined “Slow down before you kill someone.”

Until everyone respects the laws established to protect us, until these very laws are strictly enforced, and until the fines for infractions are increased and driver education is emphasized, specifically paying attention and driving responsibly, these senseless deaths will continue.

The pedestrian public needs to take notice as well. Your life and the lives of others depend upon it.


Santa Rosa

The power of words

EDITOR: There has been some concern expressed that the words of our president have inspired violence like the recent mass shooting in New Zealand. On the other hand, our president has stated that this absolutely isn’t true. Thus, there seem to be a couple of possibilities.

One that the words of a powerful, American president, ascribing in this instance malicious and immoral qualities in Muslims, do influence the thinking of people throughout the world and perhaps even the actions like those of the New Zealand shooter.

The other possibility, which our president suggests, is that people don’t pay attention to what he has been saying about Muslims or to the times he appears to advocate violence.

As a retired physician with training and certification in both psychiatry and neurology, I have spent the past 50 years learning about and observing how people typically respond to the statements of powerful people. I’m also familiar with how powerful people often consider their words so meaningful that they do influence how others think and act.

Given all this, I’d give more credence to the first option and be surprised if our president truly believes that his words have minimal effect on others.


Rohnert Park

Road work

EDITOR: Potholes and road conditions in Santa Rosa and throughout Sonoma County were an issue in the last election and continue to be a concern for many people. In many respects, this represents a failure of our government to take care of its responsibilities.

I would like the paper to assign a reporter to call the Santa Rosa Department of Transportation and Public Works, the Sonoma County Department of Transportation and Public Works and Caltrans to find out where work is to be performed, what is to be done and when it will be complete. This compilation should be printed weekly in the paper. I would like to know where my money is going.

I found no related information on the city’s website. The county public works website hasn’t been updated since 2017. Caltrans’ website is full of strategies and “organizational excellence” and “stewardship” and no useful information until you drill down to the individual districts. Sonoma County is part of District 4.

We need to know what is going on because so many roads are in bad shape: Highway 1, Grange Road, Porter Creek, etc. I don’t believe we can continue to use the trauma of the fires as an excuse for not fixing things. We need to know what is going on.


Santa Rosa

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