Changes needed for CalPERS
Re “With investments soft, CalPERS eyes higher contributions” (Page 1A, Nov. 22): CalPERS needs to look at all the options to solve the dramatically underfunded PERS system.
Passing all costs onto government agencies is unworkable. Changes to the benefits side of the equation needs to happen. For example, using the last highest year of earnings for the benefit calculation, implemented under Gray Davis when times were good, needs to be rolled back. The previous standard of the three highest years is still a rich benefit but much more reasonable and less prone to abuse.
I’m sure there are many more examples of other benefit changes than this very obvious one, and it is urgent that these changes be made now. If they aren’t, we taxpayers will be left holding the bag.
Elfrena Foord, Sacramento
Re “Airline passengers boo Gold Star family” (Local, Nov. 20): Many newspaper articles get my attention by the headline and this one definitely did. I thought at first I had read it wrong. Unfortunately, I hadn’t. The flight captain’s request to passengers to let a “special military family” quickly exit from the plane in Phoenix due to possibly missing a connecting flight to Philadelphia to pick up the remains of their soldier son, was a reasonable and compassionate request.
Even though the passengers were simply told it was a “special military family” without further details, the announcement should have been met with accommodation and encouragement for the grieving family by every single passenger. I am sure that most of the passengers were understanding. To not be was selfish and shameful. I’ve seen some bad behavior on flights, but this is deplorable.
My heartfelt condolences to the Perry family on the loss of their son.
Peggy Clark, Elk Grove
Appalling? Oh yes. A surprise? Not anymore.
The boorishness of the American population knows no bounds. These boors feel it is appropriate to boo the grieving family of a dead soldier traveling to pick up his body. There has been a steady decline in national pride and support of our troops. Now it seems these people feel it is quite appropriate to boo a family suffering the biggest and worse loss they could ever have happen. Their behavior is embarrassing and shameful.
Principled leaders or simply minions
Re “Trump meets Romney in bid to heal GOP campaign schism” (Page 1A, Nov. 20): I once heard a lawyer recommend that students track their values during law school. “Your values change,” he counseled. “That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but be sure you’re happy with the change.”
I hope Republican legislators do the same self-analysis over the next four years. Donald Trump’s compulsion to excoriate allies and rivals alike who challenge him has led party members to capitulate shortly after adopting a principled stand.
Party power seesaws over time. One party rules and the other gains favor. This reflects a nation of good people forced to choose between polarizing candidates and forewarns that cowardice by legislators now will lead to a greater swing in upcoming elections. Will it have been worth it to follow Trump as he follows his vows to flout core American values including constitutionally protected human rights?
Thoughtful voters will be tracking whether their representatives are principled leaders or simply minions.
Michael Klasson, Davis
Is Trump OK with alt-right?
Recent media pictures of attendees at an alt-right conference shouting “Hail Trump” are reminiscent of Nazi rallies in Germany of the 1930s. It is difficult to believe that in our time we would witness such blatant and outright hatred and prejudice.
It is also moments like these that are a test of Donald Trump’s true sentiments. If he can’t bring himself to reject this bigotry then he is condoning it.
Take your right to vote seriously
Re “Kaepernick is right not to vote” (Another View, Nov. 21): I think it’s very courageous of Colin Kaepernick to support the Black Lives Matter protest. However, Detria Thompson’s support for not voting is extremely disappointing.
Our electoral system may need an overhaul, but it’s not broken. If blacks had voted as they did in the last two presidential elections we would have had a very different result this time. Black lives matter and so do their votes, and anyone who promotes non-voting won’t receive my support or my vote.
Don Kline, Sacramento
Many have answered the call
Re “Generation needs a time out” (Letters, Nov. 19): I was disappointed to read Russ Brown’s letter suggesting that today’s youths are all wimps who constantly need coddling, while only the 18-years-olds of D-Day were tough, honorable men.
In every generation Americans have stood up to serve their country. Whether in World War I or II, Korea, Vietnam or the Gulf War, many have served and sacrificed. Since 2001 this country has been at war and thousands of 18-year-olds have answered the call. Many have made the ultimate sacrifice. To those young men and women, I say thank you.
George Ribet, Sacramento
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