Letters to the Editor

Letters: Liberals, gas taxes, handicap parking, charity

‘Liberal’ lawmakers

Re “Is California’s Legislature the most liberal in state history?” (Dan Walters, April 29): Are California’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions truly excessive, unpleasant, forceful? Is the human cause of climate change controversial in our state? Is the state’s reaction to Donald Trump’s climate denying, fossil-fuel-burning policies unjustified?

Or are our elected officials simply trying to act like responsible, 21st-century governments by attempting to mitigate the effects of the worst environmental calamity in human history?

I am more proud than ever to be a Californian. I count on our state government to do whatever it can to protect us by pushing back even more aggressively against the national insanity, not only with regard to climate change but also health care, sanctuary: all the issues that Dan Walters cites as too progressive and too expensive.

Lynn Davidson, Berkeley

Gas tax will help

Re “California gas tax increase is now law. What it costs you and what it fixes” (sacbee.com, April 28): I’m glad to see that bill has official passed, and that soon the roads will become better. Years ago, my grandfather and brother were traveling on Interstate 5 near Tracy when suddenly my grandfather’s wheel popped, causing his van to flip sideways down a hill. The cause of this was due to a hole in between the left and right lanes. Luckily, they only suffered minor injuries. We can prevent accidents like these from happening once the roads are repaired.

Jonathan Martinez, Acampo

Gas tax will cost

Motorists will pay more for gas and registration. Taxpayers will pay more for road repair due to prevailing wage requirements. Consumers will pay more because businesses will be forced to raise the price of their goods and services. Voters had no voice because Jerry Brown broke his promise to not raise taxes without a public vote. Lower-income people who have to commute will be hurt the hardest. Constituents were not protected by their elected politicians. Brown’s ridiculous “leaky house” example was created by politicians who shifted gas taxes to the general fund and ignored annual maintenance.

Janis Hightower, Orangevale

Tax reform

Re “This part of Trump’s tax proposal would penalize Californians more than almost anyone else” (sacbee.com, April 27): Removing state and local tax deductions to determine federal taxable income is irrelevant to most folks but will increase federal income taxes for a very small percentage of the population.

The larger question is why should residents of other states subsidize California’s high state and local taxes? The federal personal tax deduction is the same whether you live in California or Texas. If we want to pay higher taxes to provide for state and local services, that is our choice. That is how we voted. For those at higher income levels, losing this tax deduction will increase their federal taxes at a meaningless percentage of their total yearly income.

Dean Dal Ben, Sacramento

Prisoners’ rights

Re “Judge: California must allow transgender inmates’ earrings” (sacbee.com, April 28): Earrings and bracelets for transgender inmates at taxpayers expense? Are you kidding me? Children and elderly are doing without in this Golden State and we’re paying for this nonsense.

Get a grip, Californians. When are we who have responsibly helped support this state going to wake up? I don’t care if inmates have jewelry. I’m fairly certain they didn’t care about their victims and their wants.

Marge Ward, Fair Oaks

Judge is wrong

What is wrong with the judges who think people incarcerated have more rights than law-abiding citizens? I couldn’t care less if they have earrings. I haven’t broken any laws but might like an earring for myself. Who would pay for mine?

How would Judge Jon Tigar like it if these earring-wearing inmates were released in his neighborhood? Since when is it the job of judges to give fashion advice? Just another reason people are leaving California in droves for more reasonable thinking places. Goes perfectly with the tax increases our elected officials think that we didn’t notice.

Steven Howard, Yuba City

Must be fake news

If I had seen the article about earrings for transgender inmates on the internet, I would have assumed it was an amusing example of fake news. Did I really see this, or am I just having one of my homophobic nightmares?

Paul Greisen, Sacramento

Fusako Petrus

Re “ ‘Pretty feisty for her tiny size,’ friend says of woman killed at track” (sacbee.com, April 29): Our community is in mourning for our hero, Fusako Petrus. There is no braver or more unselfish act than laying down one’s life to save a beloved friend. Our prayers and condolences go out to Fusako’s family and friends.

We additionally extend our deepest gratitude to Sacramento County sheriff’s deputies for their quick response in apprehending the murder suspect in the attack of these brave women. We are forever grateful to have you in our corner.

Vi Phillips-Hall, Sacramento

Placards are vital

Re “Are dead people taking your parking place?” (sacbee.com, April 28): I have a diagnosed illness called spinal stenosis. This makes it difficult for me to walk more than 100 yards or walk without a grocery cart on which to lean. I have been allowed a disability placard that saves steps and is important to my ability to enjoy life.

Many times, all the allotted spaces are already filled. I know that family members or heirs of deceased family members are abusing placards.

I believe law enforcement should approach people in handicapped parking spots and question them. Scofflaw parking is a crime, and a few $4,200 fines would repay police for their enforcement and would be a deterrent to others falsely using the handicapped spaces.

Robert Kelly, Woodland

Parking cheats

One way to reduced placard cheating is to make these placards less valuable. We all understand reserving parking spaces near entrances and exits. But free and unlimited parking?

It may take handicapped people a little longer to shop, but that doesn’t justify all-day parking. And why free? Is there some assumption that handicapped people can’t pay for parking? Eliminate these two features and there will be less cheating and more spaces available for the genuinely handicapped.

Jeff Fine, Sacramento

Handicap parking

People with disabled placards are stiffing local governments because they do not have to pay parking meters. Placards save workers in Sacramento thousands of dollars per year. There is no reason for this: The state should charge several hundred dollars per year for a placard or, in this day and age of credit card meters, make people pay the meter. I get annoyed seeing cars with placards paying nothing.

People with disabilities are not, by definition, poor. There should be some way for people with placards to pay for parking. Requiring placards to be renewed every year and a fee paid would be a start.

Sylvia Navari, Sacramento

Mistletoe woes

Re “ ‘Paris isn’t in our league,’ Sacramento arborist says” (sacbee.com, April 28): I often see compliments for Sacramento’s tree population. But one thing I never see addressed is the lack of infrastructure designed to prevent and eradicate mistletoe, a common parasitic plant that over time ravages and kills trees as it spreads. Drive along any of our suburb streets and you can see examples of mistletoe spreading without any effort being made to save trees. If Sacramento is so proud of its trees, why does it not have some kind municipal function responsible for requiring homeowner care of trees and providing assistance and support in that regard?

James McGrew, Sacramento

Charity for its sake

Re “To resist Trump give to local nonprofits” (Editorials, May 4): Your editorial inaccurately portrays the missions of charitable nonprofits including that of St. Vincent de Paul of Roseville. We are devoted to assisting working families avoid homelessness because Catholic social justice teaches us to help our neighbors in need.

We are not working to resist any political party or elected official. The same may be said for other charitable nonprofits who are motivated by humanitarian principles, not by political resistance. The more noble reason to contribute to charities is to share our bounty with those in need, not to make a political statement.

David F. Gonzales, board member, St. Vincent de Paul, Roseville


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