Letters to the Editor

Death penalty, Clinton, Trump and blame

A supporter of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump holds up a sign referring to Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton during a Trump campaign rally in Miami on Wednesday.
A supporter of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump holds up a sign referring to Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton during a Trump campaign rally in Miami on Wednesday. The Associated Press

We need to abolish the death penalty

Re “Awful as it is, death penalty serves a purpose in California” (Insight, Nov. 2): As a 30-year police veteran, I had always been a supporter of the death penalty. In the 1980s I was appointed as one of the 13 official state execution witnesses. After many delays, Robert Alton Harris was executed for his horrific crimes on April 22, 1992, at San Quentin.

I hated Harris for his cold-blooded murder of the son of a San Diego police detective. I wanted him executed. The execution was botched by a last-second call from U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Harris was unstrapped and removed from the gas chamber. Several hours later he was returned, re-strapped in, and poison gas killed him. As much as I hated him, I didn’t feel any better afterward. In fact, I began to feel like we were sinking to his level.

After much soul-searching and talks with my priest, I turned against the death penalty. Harris wasn’t worthy of my hate. He was a pitiful figure who should have spent the rest of his life shuffling around the general population of prison. I did my duty and witnessed the last gas chamber execution a year later and then removed myself from the list.

Columnist Marcos Breton says it is easy for millionaires who have never been touched by the horror of homicide to be against the death penalty. I’m just an old cop on a pension, and I have been touched by the horror and am steadfastly against the death penalty. It is time for the people of California to get out of the killing business.

James Cost, Folsom

chief of police (retired)

This woman doesn’t blame men

Re “What do men want when they bash Clinton?” (Insight, Nov. 3): I feel sorry for Shawn Hubler’s narrow view, blaming men for bashing Hillary Clinton. She’s done that all by herself. She doesn’t represent me as a female; women who do are in powerful positions throughout this nation. Trying to explain Clinton’s lousy approval rating as sexist is, in and of itself, indefensible.

Donald Trump’s sexual aggressions are also indefensible and show him as morally repugnant. It’s bottom-of-the-barrel time for voting, and I’ll chose Trump as the least morally and ethically challenged.

Pat Whittington,

Citrus Heights

Was column on Clinton a joke?

According to Shawn Hubler, Hillary Clinton is as pure as the driven snow and all the controversy surrounding her and her husband for the last 30 years is nothing but the ranting of sexist men. Are you serious?

To paraphrase someone else, the controversy surrounding Clinton has nothing to do with her gender, and everything to do with the content of her character. There is not one woman within my circle of friends who is going to vote for Clinton. It’s not that they love Donald Trump. It’s that they are repulsed by the utter corruption of the Clinton machine.

Kevin Michael Conde, Yuba City

Issues with Clinton not about gender

What do men want, Shawn Hubler asks? Men and women want a president that will have strong policies in the world and is straight with the American people. We also want a president who doesn’t put their thumb on the scale, doesn’t sell influence, and does not lie.

It’s not a gender issue, it’s about being truthful to the American people. We want a strong president we can believe in.

Doug Hinchey, Lincoln

Message sent in vote for Trump?

What kind of message are you sending to your wife when you tell her you are voting for Donald Trump? Is the message that it is acceptable to you for her to be sexually assaulted, if the man doing the assault is wealthy or famous? Are you telling her that you are OK with a groin groper in the White House? And what about the message you are sending to your daughters or granddaughters?

Women, same question.

We all need to be aware of the legacy we are leaving our children. Believe me, they are watching.

David Emerson, Lincoln


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