Letters to the Editor

This lawyer isn’t ‘red meat,’ but Kaepernick is a lackluster martyr

From left, Eli Harold, Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid kneel during the national anthem before their NFL game against the Dallas Cowboys last October. Kaepernick hasn’t joined a team since leaving the San Francisco 49ers as a free agent.
From left, Eli Harold, Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid kneel during the national anthem before their NFL game against the Dallas Cowboys last October. Kaepernick hasn’t joined a team since leaving the San Francisco 49ers as a free agent. TNS

Not a martyr

Re “Kaepernick the quarterback is now Kaepernick the martyr. NFL only has itself to blame” (sacbee.com, Aug. 25): Well, boohoo. The National Felony League’s monopoly is coming to an end, as it has been exposed as a thug sport that doesn’t require much skill. The whole controversy about Colin Kaepernick. He has a right not to stand during the national anthem. But for the slavish fan base to picket NFL headquarters is OK, too. But what’s your point? Kaepernick is certainly not a martyr as he is still very much alive and he is most certainly not a religious figure.

The circus is a circus all right, getting people to lobby on one’s behalf for an absurd salary playing a no-skill game. Playing the race card, now it is really time to grow up and quit wasting everyone’s time on issues that have no effect on the rest of the world.

Andrew Mattson, Roseville

On King Coal

Re “State official picks fight with King Coal. But King Coal has secret weapon – Democrats” (sacbee.com, Aug. 26): I’d like to clarify a couple of points. First, the amendment my committee made to Senate Bill 488, authored by Sen. Steven Bradford, requires that before establishing a “data call,” the Department of Insurance adopt the appropriate regulations. A “data call” is a term for a formal request from the department to insurance companies for business-related information.

In your column, you wrote that this amendment “would bar (Insurance Commissioner Dave) Jones from asking for insurance company holdings in fossil fuels with specific legislative approval.” In fact, the amendment would simply require the department to follow the Administrative Procedures Act before making “data calls.” The APA has been California law for over 70 years. It allows the public to participate in the adoption of state regulations, to ensure that the regulations are clear, necessary and legally valid.

Secondly, the amendment was my idea, drafted by my staff, and designed to ensure the clarity in law that Californians should expect of their state government. Sen. Bradford’s bill proposes the strongest insurance diversity law in the country, and I am a strong supporter of his endeavor.

Assemblyman Tom Daly, D-Anaheim, chair of the Assembly Insurance Committee

Death is no joke

Re “Pearls Before Swine” (The Sacramento Bee, Aug. 27): I was shocked and appalled that the Sunday cartoon, “Pearls Before Swine,” made a joke out of the death penalty. (The barbarism of the electric chair no less!) If it was a horrible lack of ethics – not to mention, taste – for Stephan Pastis to create such a cartoon, it was no less so for The Bee to run it.

What lesson is this teaching children? That the taking of a human life, regardless of how one feels about the death penalty (and I thought The Bee’s editorial board opposed it), is just a cheap laugh? Shameful.

J.C. Fisher, Carmichael

Zapatista ‘rebels’

Re “In a Mexico ‘tired of violence,’ Zapatista rebels try politics” (The Sacramento Bee, Aug. 27): This piece was shallow and misleading. Its opening sentence, stating that the Zapatistas “are renouncing armed revolution,” is incorrect. The Zapatistas left the path of armed revolution about 20 years ago. The violence in Mexico today comes primarily from the ongoing drug wars, abetted by corrupt officials and a culture of impunity.

What is true in this article is that this is indeed a watershed moment for the Zapatistas. Maria de Jesús “Marichuy” Patricio Martínez as “the first female indigenous candidate” to run for president of Mexico. The real story is that of the simple and humble native peoples of Mexico, marginalized for centuries and reduced to poverty and second-class status in their own country, having the courage to stand up and demand a place at the table, and a voice in their own government.

Mario Galvan, Carmichael

Voter registration

Re “California schools are supposed to promote voter registration. Why isn’t that happening?” (sacbee.com, Aug. 24): The author uses statistics to point out “our country suffers from a serious deficit in basic civic knowledge and that political engagement by young voters is especially low.” Why would she want seriously uninformed young people to organize voting and registration drives?

Instead of learning how to vote, wouldn’t they be better served by learning how government works, and the pros and cons of what they are voting for? Voting without knowledge is detrimental to society as we have seen with career politicians.

Janis Hightower, Orangevale

Cars, the gorilla

Re “How California’s car culture hurts the state’s fight against climate change” (sacbee.com, Aug. 25): So glad to read on the front page Sunday that the automobile is causing 37 percent of greenhouse gases. This issue is the 400-pound gorilla in the room. It is seldom published or talked about, but our alternative to this love of the automobile is slow in coming. The other 400-pound gorilla is population. There are too many people on this planet. In the ’60s, there was ZPG, or Zero Population Growth. Everyone understood you should only have two children to replace yourself.

A new report, published in January stated that global warming is happening faster than expected and that the Earth’s population is also increasing faster than was once believed. The two go hand in hand. Are any of us able to fall back and regroup, and rethink what we do?

Kathleen D. Green, Sacramento

Try an apology

Re “Take Two,” (sacbee.com, Aug. 27): Bipartisanship. Such a nice concept, like unicorns. Immediately after extolling the sweet virtue of bipartisanship, The Sacramento Bee’s editorial board found it acceptable to make an ad hominem attack on Harmeet Dhillon, a committeewoman for the Republican National Committee, by nicknaming her “Red Meat.” Without explanation, the board chose to single her out for ridicule, while referring to two Republican men by name.

The name Harmeet has is origins in the Sikh holy book that means “God’s friend” and was chosen for her in a religious ceremony. Making fun of that name is not just attacking her, but denigrating the Sikh faith as well. The editorial board managed to insult Sikhs, women and Republicans in one fell swoop. While quickly edited in the online version, The Sacramento Bee owes Dhillon and all Sikhs a formal apology in print.

Pete Constant, Roseville,

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