“The Latest: 7 Democrats visit White House to talk to Trump” (sacbee.com, Jan. 16): The government shutdown has become a game of “chicken” with both sides blaming the other and neither side blinking. Meanwhile, thousands of people are suffering. So, let’s see where we stand. 1) The Democratically controlled House passed a clean bill to fund the government without the wall. 2) The Republican-controlled Senate refuses to vote on any bill that they believe the president will not sign. But, if the Senate really wanted to end the shutdown, they could. Here’s how: Pass a bill to fund the government. Then, if the President vetoes it, Congress could vote to override the veto. The worst that could happen is that they cannot override it and things stay the same. But then everyone would know exactly who is responsible for the shutdown continuing. So, why isn’t the Senate doing it?
Robert Rice, Sacramento
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“Sheriff Scott Jones levels new claim against ousted inspector general Rick Braziel” (sacbee.com, Jan. 10): Did reporters get bombshell information from the sheriff but throw themselves over it to shield the former inspector general Rick Braziel from the blast? After reading the sheriff’s letter it looks like they did not press him very hard. Many discrepancies seem unanswered. It is clear he never released a report early before but then decided to release McIntyre’s two weeks after the Chicago police monitor job was announced and used it as an example of his work just before their due date. Outrageous! Why are only supervisors critical of the sheriff sought for comment? It sure looks like Braziel threw sheriff’s deputies and the sheriff under the bus to make himself look good for a $250 per hour job monitoring Chicago police. They are hungry for police criticism there. The press is critical in the oversight of government.
Don Jones, Fair Oaks
“California Democrats made plastic straws hard to get. Are paper receipts next?” (sacbee.com, Jan. 9): Environmentally friendly laws are becoming more important to our environment. As shown in this article by Bryan Anderson, California lawmakers’ proposal to get rid of paper receipts is vital for the future of the earth. This law must be enacted so it can jumpstart change to take care of our planet. Paper receipts are a huge burden for little gain. According to a 2013 Huffington Post article, “Over 250 million gallons of oil, 10 million trees and 1 billion gallons of water are consumed each year in the creation of receipts for the United States alone, generating 1.5 billion pounds of waste.” In comparison, digital receipts create no waste and use no resources. They are also more convenient than paper as they do not take up valuable space. Therefore, California should go fully digital in order to preserve the environment.
Jason Park, San Jose
“If you want a wall, make an argument, but leave a cop killing out of it” (sacbee.com, Jan. 9): This latest column, by Marcos Breton, and all other talk about illegal immigrants, wouldn’t be needed if one thing was changed. Prosecute those who employ them. Without jobs, there would be no need for them to come here. This won’t change the illegal flow of drugs or other smuggled goods, but neither will a wall. The main route for smuggled goods is still in trucks coming through the border crossings, and in containers disguised as normal commodities that are brought in on ships. To a lesser extent, boats (including submarines) and airplanes are used. Every year, tunnels are found, and they are getting increasingly larger, longer, and more technically sophisticated. Wait until the cartels get the means to bore tunnels under the border like Elon Musk did under Los Angeles. The money for the wall would better be spent developing technology to stop those main smuggling channels.
Dave Novotny, Granite Bay