Letters to the Editor

Forum Letters: Does anyone else think this is utterly messed up?

This is messed up

Gunman in Gilroy mass shooting bought ‘assault-type rifle’ legally in Nevada, police say” (sacbee.com, July 29): So, apparently, the Gilroy Garlic Festival shooter was 19 years old. He couldn’t yet drink. He could barely vote. He could barely drive. But he was legally allowed to purchase a battlefield weapon – an AK-47-style assault rifle – because, you know, our founding fathers envisioned that hormonal, troubled teens should be armed like that in case their government needed to be overthrown. At 19, I had a slingshot. And I didn’t behave all that well with it. Does anyone else think this is utterly messed up? That a young boy like this can legally own a weapon reserved for troops in Afghanistan and then use it to get his revenge on society in his barely-awake, screwed-up teenage mind?

Rick Ray,


His pants are on fire

California insurance commissioner met with CEO who has cases pending before his department” (sacbee.com, July 29): California’s Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara admits he had a “casual” meeting with an insurance executive whose company had pending complaints against it from the state’s Department of Insurance. He’s also admitted that he accepted campaign contributions from the wives of insurance company executives doing business in California. Acting ineptly as his own treasurer, he didn’t know the money connections. In baseball, three strikes gets you out. A hand caught in the cookie jar takes a creative explanation. If it walks and quacks like a duck, it’s probably a duck. Choose the metaphor – they all work. Lara Lara pants on fire works, too.

Steven Schnaidt,


It needs to be acknowledged

California wildfire insurance is in crisis. And the real estate market is suffering” (sacbee.com, July 29): The Sacramento Bee quoted embattled, and clearly clueless, Insurance Commissioner Lara in another article earlier this month as saying that the fire insurance hasn’t activated “crisis mode yet.” Yes, it has! This crisis is more than people not being able to sell their homes. It’s longtime residents worried that they won’t have insurance if disaster hits and lose everything. Some people seem happy to have the market correct itself and allow investors to pick up properties for pennies on the dollar if this crisis continues. Others might feel people don’t need to live in those areas and should simply move. And some politicians might prefer everyone live in little urban housing boxes. There’s a national flood insurance program. Gov. Gavin Newsom is providing more than $100 million for safe drinking water. It’s time to acknowledge the financial devastation the denial of insurance coverage is having on large parts of our state. It’s time to act.

Robert D. Rystad,

Citrus Heights

Let’s set up California as a leader

Bored governor signs silly bill: Film at 11” (sacbee.com, July 30): The Sacramento Bee Editorial Board could not be more wrong about Senate Bill 27, which requires presidential and gubernatorial candidates to release their tax returns to earn a place on the California state primary ballot. In an era where dark money is marinating our nation’s politics and corruption is running rampant under President Donald Trump’s lawless administration, states need to step up for transparency and fairness in how their elections are run. By using this clean government bill as a cudgel with which to beat up Gov. Gavin Newsom, The Bee is reverting to its old Republican roots. This financial transparency bill is being replicated in other states, showing that Newsom and the California legislature are willing to fulfill a leadership vacuum left wide open by a criminal president.

Joseph Palermo,


Reparations won’t make it better

“Answer these, Candidates” (The Sacramento Bee, section 9A, July 29): George F. Will states that Nike buckled beneath the disapproval of Colin Kaepernick by withdrawing shoes with the 13-star Betsy Ross flag emblazoned on them. As a black female, I have not said the Pledge of Allegiance or sung the national anthem since I was in seventh grade, more than 50 years ago. I realized, at that time, that there really is no “liberty and justice for all.” Indeed, I have seen this proven by American society again and again. It continues to this day. Furthermore, Will discusses reparations for slavery. I don’t believe all the monetary reparations in the world can make amends or compensate black people for the holocaust of slavery. Millions of slaves were slaughtered during the atrocity of slavery, not including the millions who died in transit or while still in Africa. Reparations? I would settle for simple equality, especially under the law.

Jacquelyn Johnson,


That’s the problem

“Stepping up feud, Trump assails Cummings as ‘racist’” (The Sacramento Bee, section 7A, July 29): President Donald Trump’s strategy is to lambaste as racist the very people who have struggled against racism all their lives – see his recent attacks against Rep. Elijah Cummings. We expect this from Trump, whose past includes being a sleazy real-estate developer with six bankruptcies and court battles for discrimination against black tenants. There are two problems here. First, Trump has no agenda for the country because he’s inept as a public servant. At all times, he’s driven by being the center of the news or making money for himself, which is why he’s so friendly with Russian President Vladimir Putin, a sworn enemy of the U.S. Second, Trump continues to garner support from around 35 percent to 40 percent of the electorate, who have no problem with his constant bullying, denigrations and blowhard behavior. They say, “I like him because he speaks his mind.” But what they mean is that he speaks their mind. And that’s America’s real problem.

Robert Blake,


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