Letters to the Editor

Sacramento’s fallen deputy and the dirty American River

A shopping cart sits in the middle of the American River between Watt Avenue and Discovery Park. The water is polluted with E. coli from garbage and human waste.
A shopping cart sits in the middle of the American River between Watt Avenue and Discovery Park. The water is polluted with E. coli from garbage and human waste. rbenton@sacbee.com

In memoriam

Re “Sacramento sheriff’s deputy killed in hotel shootout. Two CHP officers shot, hospitalized” (sacbee.com, Aug. 30): In my years of working with the stellar Law Enforcement Chaplaincy Sacramento, I never came across a better or braver officer, or an officer with whom I bonded more than Deputy Robert French. Our tête-à-tête was to compare who was more “French.” He in name or me in nationality. I do know this. He is a hero. I am not. I also know that he would agree to Make America NICE Again.

Todd Gearou,

Citrus Heights

River of filth

Re “Lower American River contains unsafe levels of E. coli. Are homeless camps to blame?” (sacbee.com, Aug. 27): The Bee reported that the lower American River’s has levels of E. coli that exceed the federal level for safe recreational use, primarily due to human waste being dumped in the river. Two days later, The Bee published a photo of a father and his 4-year-old son building a mud castle at Paradise Beach. The disconnect between the two stories was glaring. Parents should think twice before taking their children to the river.

Ruth Rezos, Sacramento

On homelessness

Re “Lower American River contains unsafe levels of E. coli. Are homeless camps to blame?” (sacbee.com, Aug. 27): Why is this collection of filth allowed in a civilized society? Something must be done to resolve this. You cannot ride southwest past Sac State without risking a confrontation with a homeless person who wants your $500 bicycle to haul around aluminum beer cans. E. coli in the American River? What would you expect with the pictures posted in The Bee.

I don’t have a clue to where homeless people should be sent. But somewhere far away from here. What a place California has become. I resettled here in the ’70s from the Midwest. I am now heading elsewhere where there are Americans. I agree with the useful idiots that California should become a separate country. Good luck!

John Yonkus, Sacramento

Trump’s pardons

Re “Trump defends decision to pardon Arizona’s Arpaio” (sacbee.com, Aug. 28): It is rare that a president pardons someone so early in his term. Perhaps a pardon for former Sheriff Joe Arpaio is merely setting the stage for more pardons as deeper investigations bring us new Trump family financial revelations.

Will Connell, Grass Valley

Bigots, more bigots

Re “Trump defends decision to pardon Arizona’s Arpaio” (sacbee.com, Aug. 28): A racist, bigoted president pardons another racist, bigoted convicted person, yet again reflecting his contempt and disregard for the judicial system.

Gene Martineau, Roseville

Framing violence

Re “Free speech, hate” (sacbee.com, Aug. 30): Letters to the Editor writer Eileen Glaholt is incorrect in her contention that the Founding Fathers did not consider “fomenting violence” as an element of free speech. They had firsthand experience with the practice. Before and during the American Revolution, many colonists were advocating violence. The framers of the Constitution knew exactly what was included in the free speech they were protecting.

John Paul, Carmichael

Feelings on Nazis

Re “RNC votes to condemn white supremacists over groans of some” (sacbee.com, Aug. 25): The Republican National Committee has approved a resolution to condemn Nazis. Gosh, are they sure they want to go out on a limb like that? RNC member Morton Blackwell is quoted as saying, “Every person who came to Charlottesville intending violence was evil.” Thank God Gen. Eisenhower did not share Blackwell’s opinion when he led the allied forces in WWII. Eisenhower intended violence. In fact, he intended to kill the Nazis. Americans had the right idea then. They didn’t try to understand the fascists or try to see their side of things; they tried to kill them. And for doing so, they weren’t called “antifa,” they were called “heroes.”

Richard Vidan, Orangevale

On real heroism

Re “Kaepernick the quarterback is now Kaepernick the martyr. NFL only has itself to blame” (sacbee.com, Aug. 25): Kneeling is not heroism. Doing something about the problem is.

Daniel Wallace,

Diamond Springs

Don’t worry, Asians

Re “After Charlottesville, where do Asian Americans fit in the conversation on race?” (sacbee.com, Aug. 25): Foon Rhee asks about Asians. An excerpt from a Los Angeles Times article offers a hint. “In 2015, when 64 Asian American groups filed a complaint with the Justice Department alleging that Harvard University illegally discriminated against Asian students in admissions, Joe Zhou had little hope it would go anywhere. So when the Trump administration announced Wednesday that it planned to investigate racial discrimination against Asians in college admissions, Zhou was thrilled.”

So whereas their complaints were ignored under the previous administration, Asians like Zhou are thrilled that they are finally being heard – reassurance that they will “fit in” just fine under Trump.

James McCandless, Roseville

Leftist violence

Re “After Charlottesville, where do Asian Americans fit in the conversation on race?” (sacbee.com, Aug. 25): I initially thought this article was just another attempt to distort a benign statement into something racist – which it was. But then I was struck by something of greater concern.

Foon Rhee says the president “lumped neo-Nazis and peaceful protesters together.” The president decried violence “on both sides,” referring only to violent counter-demonstrators. At worst if investigation reveals there was only violence on one side – a possibility about as likely as hens growing molars – he would simply be in error about the existence of another side. This column is one more example of the idea that leftist violence is not only OK, but praiseworthy. If that idea is ever enshrined in law, beware. The thought police will be watching us all.

Paul Greisen, Sacramento

The other religion

Re “After Charlottesville, where do Asian Americans fit in the conversation on race?” (sacbee.com, Aug. 25): Although Foon Rhee’s opinion pieces generally leave me feeling uplifted in agreement, his most recent one tripped over its penultimate sentence. After sharing a recent sermon’s essence to hate the message and not the messenger, to seek redemption not damnation, he exhorts us all to follow this message as Christians. Excuse me, my friend, but you just negated your whole first 800 words. We are not all Christians. Isn’t that the point?

William Blank, Sacramento

Bail versus jail

Re “In California, poor people go to jail, rich people go free. How long will this go on?” (sacbee.com, Aug 28): The relevant point is that 62 percent of the people in our county jails are awaiting trial. The editorial’s questions are just bureaucratic dithering.

The answer is simple. The purpose of bail is to assure the person returns for trial. Judges already decide on bail, either monetary or release on their own recognizance. To encourage return, those who are released and evade their court date should be subject to a minimum of two years in jail, and a doubling of the sentence for any conviction, including that for any other crime committed while they were free. The savings from not having so many people waiting in jail would provide for a substantial reward to those who apprehend and return evaders.

Bill Jurkovich,

Citrus Heights

On mental health

Re “City manager called Sacramento developer ‘mentally ill.’ Now the developer’s filed a claim” (sacbee.com, Aug. 25): There is nothing humiliating, embarrassing or mortifying about having a mental illness. It’s an illness like any other illness. Paul Petrovich should be glad someone is concerned enough to point out the possibility. Instead he has insulted thousands of people who truly have a mental illness and added to the stigma. If more people talked about it, we would have fewer mentally ill people on our streets because they would not feel humiliated in asking for treatment. Paul, you have slurred the mentally ill and owe them an apology.

Lynn Smith, Woodland

Bye Sheriff Jones

Re “Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones says he won’t seek third term” (sacbee.com, Aug. 25): Sacramento County citizens should take the news that Sheriff Scott Jones will not seek re-election as good news. Contrary to his view of his accomplishments, his tenure has not been without unnecessary costs to local taxpayers. They are on the hook for several millions of dollars for the failures in supervision, leadership and judgment of Sheriff’s Department leaders. The really good news in his departure would be if he was going to reimburse taxpayers for the cost of his failures.

Ma Figueroa, Sacramento


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