Letters to the Editor

Health insurance tax + toxic air + North Korea + Kamala Harris

Rep. Ami Bera, D- Elk Grove.
Rep. Ami Bera, D- Elk Grove. jvillegas@sacbee.com

Free college

Re “‘Free college’ is a new rallying cry in California” (sacbee.com, Sept. 5): Free college? By all means. And let's have free food and clothes, too. Free housing, medical, dental, transportation. Want a big flat-screen TV? Walk in the store and take it. Look how well that worked for Venezuela.

Martin Owens, Sacramento

Health tax

Re “Small businesses can’t afford another health tax” (Viewpoints, Aug. 29): One of the toughest obstacles facing small businesses is the skyrocketing price of health insurance. The Health Insurance Tax will make those costs even higher. This tax was delayed for a year. This reprieve expires at the start of 2018. If the tax goes into effect, it would increase health insurance costs. This could force me to cut health benefits, scale back on raises and bonuses, or eliminate jobs. Congress needs to act. Rep. Ami Bera, D-Elk Grove, has been a good friend to small businesses, and understands the negative effects the tax could have. He supported the suspension in 2015. We hope he leads the effort for an additional delay now. Small business owners are counting on him.

Matt Zellmer, Sacramento

Toxic air

Re “Smoke in Sacramento blamed on California, Oregon wildfires” (sacbee.com, Aug. 31): Wood smoke from the forest fires impacting Sacramento is actually relatively harmless, since 90 percent of what you breathe in is promptly exhaled. Far more dangerous are invisible, ultra-fine metals from brake drums and pads, and diesel exhaust, which are highly toxic and stick in the deep lung.

Thomas A Cahill, Davis

Jim Mattis

Re “Mattis: NKorea threat would bring massive military response” (sacbee.com, Sept. 3): North Korea's escalating nuclear demonstrations are reminiscent of the tensions during the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. One consolation is that we have the experienced and highly knowledgeable Gen. Jim Mattis as defense secretary.

Melanie Kinkead, Sacramento

Kamala Harris

Re “Kamala Harris, flash and style, can’t measure up to Dianne Feinstein” (Viewpoints, Aug. 31): Sen. Kamala Harris is an attractive, strong, young, intelligent, educated woman. We need more like her.

Shirley Svoboda-Crumpley, Roseville

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