Re “What’s worse than failing to fix homelessness in Sacramento? Spending $5 million to fail again.” (Erika D. Smith, Opinion, July 13): I respectfully disagree with Erika D. Smith’s views about the possible stance of the Board of Supervisors regarding the presence of the homeless camping on the American River Parkway. Homelessness seems to have become permanent. The issue is as complex as is the demographic of those who are homeless. Having said that, I do not believe the rights of 3,665 people, some of whom camp in the parkway, should trump the rights of those who have helped create this crown jewel of the Sacramento region for decades. They should not have the right to destroy this beautiful parkway. Citizens use the parkway for the purposes for which it was created. They should also carry some weight. I support the supervisors. If $5 million helps protect the parkway, it is money well-spent.
Stephen R. Hoover, Sacramento
It is not just a waste of $5 million. It is a dangerous game of Whack-a-Mole, except we are talking about people. Our neighbors living on the American River Parkway have nowhere to go. Whack them and they will be back. When they return, they will be more frustrated, marginalized and hopeless. The only solution is to empower people to succeed in permanent housing. That $5 million must address the real problem: a humanitarian housing crisis, not a criminal crisis. We need a quick creative resource in addition to shelters and housing. A pop-up, short-term empowerment center could provide shelter, support and dignity to residents rebuilding their lives. Done right, $5 million would go a long way toward restoring lives and parkway safety. Done wrong, it will buy an expensive game of Whack-a-Mole.
Mary Hall, Orangevale
Moving homeless persons off the parkway with no place to go is a bad idea. I work within in sight of the closed Sleep Train Arena. Until the arena is re-purposed, why not use this building as temporary shelter? The arena has restrooms, showers, kitchens, recreational facilities and parking. City and county agencies could work together to transport folks living on the parkway to the arena and provide health and social services and temporary shelter at the arena.
Ruth Rezos, Sacramento
Learning to fish
Re “3,600 homeless people in Sacramento? Time to stop badmouthing San Francisco.” (Editorials, July 10): It is time to teach the homeless of Sacramento how to fish instead of feeding them for a day. The Delancey Street Restaurant in San Francisco provides down and out with a home, drug rehabilitation and the skills needed to run a restaurant. Soon, they are independent and productive. Sacramento could model this at a larger scale. Those off drugs and in sound mental state could gain employment there.
Mark Wirth, Elk Grove
Re “Russian-American lobbyist says he was in Trump son’s meeting” (sacbee.com, July 14): It seems that Donald Trump’s fake news team must admit the truth that their non-stop denial of meeting with Russian agents to damage Hillary Clinton and Democrats in the 2016 election was a lie. Trump’s retort that many others would have done the same is a slimy insult to Americans, especially those who serve to protect the rights of our citizens for free and secure elections. Trump and his team place winning above all else and cross any line so long as they are not caught. He convinced hopeful voters that his presidency would benefit them, though he was unfit to perform the necessary work of adopting national principles and related laws to deliver the goods. Journalists of all beliefs have concluded that Trump is absent-without-leave on every important matter before Congress, tweeting unrelated attacks and delegating commander-in-chief duties to generals. Being described as AWOL is too generous.
Dan Fong, Rancho Cordova
Imagine two crafty foxes pitching a security plan to the feathered residents of a chicken park. That’s the image conjured up of Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin colluding, oops, partnering, to protect the world’s cyberspace. Consider this guide to Trumpspeak: The truth nearly always resides in the opposite of what anyone in the family and crew professes as verity. Campaign officials meeting with Russian state operatives a nothing burger? Do you want prison stripes with that? To quote someone’s newsworthy and revealing remark, “ I love it.”
Spencer P. Le Gate, Sacramento
Which witch hunt?
President Donald Trump calls criticizing his son’s actions the greatest witch hunt in history. As usual, he has that wrong. That honor belongs to the Republicans who conducted a three-year “witch hunt” against Hillary Clinton, including Benghazi and private e-mail server investigations. Trump says this should be ignored because nothing came of it. Using this logic, the U.S. government should have released Benedict Arnold because he was not successful in turning over the fort at West Point to the British. The Russians have never been our friends.
Donald F. Brazell, Roseville
Re “Bungled collusion is still collusion” (Charles Krauthammer, July 13): Collusion is actively planning to do something with someone; listening to information is passive and in no way collusion, just basic information gathering. The meeting with the Russian lawyer was so inconsequential. It is easy to see how, in the campaign, it was quickly forgotten. Why don’t you focus on the important issues: foreign threats like ISIS and North Korea, and homegrown problems like jobs, education and health care?
Ida DeField, Carmichael
Re “Donald Trump, Jr. and the collusion tree” (Jack Ohman, July 12): In implying collusion on the part of a Donald Trump Jr., Jack Ohman should have first checked its definition. It is what occurs when two persons or representatives of an entity or organization make an agreement to mislead or deceive another. Clearly that definition neither fits nor describes Donald Trump Jr.’s email exchange. All he did was agree to a meeting to determine the validity of information about a political opponent. Now had he linked Clinton with the words Ukrainian and uranium, Ohman might have discovered real examples that fit the definition of collusion. Or if he recalled the Bill Clinton-Loretta Lynch airplane rendezvous, would he have dismissed it as just an innocent exchange about their grandkids?
James McCandless, Roseville
My wife and I agree that your constant negative articles about the Trump Administration are tiresome. You cleverly bury any positive news of this administration in the back pages. It’s no wonder President Donald Trump feels he needs to push back.
Doug Hinchey, Lincoln
Re “Tax cuts for power companies offered in Jerry Brown’s climate plan” (sacbee.com, July 12): The Sacramento Bee’s Jim Miller’s excellent article highlights a very serious problem with this proposal. Tax breaks given to the power industry are supposed to be compensated for by cap-and-trade revenue, while consumers benefit from supposedly lower power bills. However, effective carbon pricing is likely to raise rather than lower the cost of energy. These increased costs are most likely to be passed on to consumers all down the line. This means that Californians will end up paying for the carbon price imposed by cap-and-trade and the tax rebate given to the power companies. This burden will fall most heavily on disadvantaged people whose essential services are a larger part of their family budget. A rebated dividend to consumers, as proposed in Senator Bob Wieckowski’s Senate Bill 775, would protect all of us from this.
Lee Ballance, Kensington
It’s time to stop coddling Southern California water users with expensive tunnels. A more reasonable approach would be to have these water users invest their money in alternative projects, such as converting toilets and fire hydrants to salt water since many cities are coastal, solar desalination and solar ponds as used in Israel. Let’s put the onus on them and let us get on with our lives and water.
James F. Trout, Folsom
Re “It’s up to us to decide what it means to be an American” (Another View, July 8): John Paul’s commentary was timely. We hear our political leaders call for polite and civil discourse, but that often means only discourse and opinions with which the speaker agrees. Dissenting viewpoints are quickly labeled and trivialized. Paul is correct when he states that discussion once centered around facts. We have moved beyond that to a point where disinformation and hyperbole have become the core belief system of many. I suspect Paul and I may disagree on issues, but I would welcome the opportunity to have a non-contentious, fact-based, opinion-free discussion about challenges our communities must address.
Barbara Smith, Auburn
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