“Patrol car hits 16-year-old fleeing bike ticket, drawing angry crowd, Sacramento police say” (sacbee.com. July 23): Police Chief Hahn, as a recently retired teacher from the Del Paso area, it was with great dismay that I read about the teenager without proper lighting on his bike. The officers in this area have much more important things to do than cite teenagers for bike infractions. This area’s needs are deep and wide. You should know this as you were once a community officer serving this area. Don't you think a more judicious use of funds would be to help the teen with getting the proper lights? Officers could carry them in their trunk and actually help one of the citizens they serve. In this time of great scrutiny, this would add capital to the police department’s dwindling account. If you help, then you don't have to spend so much money pursuing the teen and investigating. Please adopt proactive policies.
Barbara Borkowski, Elverta
“The issue isn’t immigration. It’s how to get people to immigrate the legal way” (California Influencers, July 12): Pete Wilson is right. We should vote out any representative who does not deal with the immigration issue. But despite his attempt to falsely-equivocate the blame, this would mean almost exclusively voting out Republicans. Also, despite his attempt to paint himself as an immigration problem solver, most of us still remember his role in Proposition 187.
David Bakay, Davis
“Dianne Feinstein is not who you think she is” (Marcos Breton, July 18): This column about Sen. Feinstein really hit home for our organization working to save a state park near Lake Tahoe. Breton pointed out the failure of the senator to live up to the power attributed to her to block Donald Trump’s agenda. Breton also noted some of Feinstein’s positive achievements, including her appropriation of funds to protect Lake Tahoe. On this point, we find her failing there, too. She has refused to intervene in California State Parks’ effort to push through a project that would utilize the funds to move a large portion of a golf course into Washoe Meadows State Park. This project would be an anomaly among all of the other environmental projects for which we give her credit. Unless she gets her political influence back on track, she has lost my vote and I’m sure that of many other voters.
Lynne Paulson, San Jose
But why de León?
Breton gave readers a litany of reasons to vote against Feinstein, but no reason to vote for Kevin de León. Is the best that could be said about him that he isn’t an 85-year-old woman who has worked in politics for 40 years? Breton complains that Feinstein is powerless because she was unable to singlehandedly block Gorsuch’s nomination. Did he miss election night in November 2016 when the GOP took control of the White House? As for the the “pathetic and unseemly” attempt to block the Democrats’ endorsement of de León, remember the 2018 primary? Feinstein’s 2 million votes to de León’s 528,043 suggest she should try to claim that endorsement. Has Feinstein always voted the way I want? No. But Feinstein has stepped up her game since November 2016. If de León wants to be taken seriously, he needs to let voters know what he stands for and what he’s done.
Molly Lewis, Sacramento
“Republicans block bid to extend election security grants” (sacbee.com, July 19): The recent move by Republicans in Congress to exclude new money for election security grants to states does nothing to ensure that our elections in 2018 will be free from meddling. There is a way for states to make their elections more secure, namely the open source ballot voting system. San Francisco has been developing this type of system, which will utilize ballot-imaging technology that will be transparent and verifiable. It’s publicly owned as well as cost effective, having been designed to run on commercial, off-the-shelf hardware. It would be shared for free with any other county that would wish to follow San Francisco’s example. Our state Legislature has been unwilling to match the $4 million that the San Francisco Elections Commission requested for this project. Let’s show Republicans how to do it right by encouraging our legislators to fund an open source ballot voting system.
Judy Reynolds, Davis
Prop. 13 and water
“Interior Secretary Zinke visits reservoirs, signaling federal interest in water fight” (sacbee.com, July 20): Do you remember the slick, tear-jerking ads about Grandma losing her mobile home because she couldn’t afford the skyrocketing property taxes? Voila! Proposition 13 passes, along with a sneaky backdoor break on property taxes for large corporations, and they’ve been living large ever since. Corporate farmers are spinning the same story today: “Without water, farmers (makes it sound like the little guy, doesn't it?) will lose his land.” Nobody tells us how much water is used for specialty nuts and grapes (for wine). We need to picture water as food. Feed ourselves first, not corporations and water rights hoarders.
Richard Kuechle, Lincoln
Heed ‘wise words’
After hiking one morning on a pristine trail in Grand Teton National Park, my wife and I visited the lovely Rockefeller Preserve and Library. What caught my eye was panel on a wall that read: “How we treat our land, how we build upon it, how we act toward our air and water will in the long run tell what kind of people we really are.” People like Gov. Jerry Brown understand those words from Laurance S. Rockefeller. Unfortunately, few Republican politicians heed those words of wisdom. The Trump administration’s actions ignoring climate change, favoring coal over cleaner energy sources, and backing out of the Paris climate accord are showing what kind of people they really are.
Ben Zeitman, Jackson