Letters to the Editor

Atomic bomb, freight, airlines

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, right, bows in front of a cenotaph dedicated to the victims of the atomic bombing at Peace Memorial Park in Hiroshima on Aug. 6.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, right, bows in front of a cenotaph dedicated to the victims of the atomic bombing at Peace Memorial Park in Hiroshima on Aug. 6. Xinhua

Atomic bomb was necessary

Re “Hiroshima survivors keep memories alive” (Insight, Aug. 7): I support President Harry Truman’s decision to drop the atomic bomb on Japan. In Emperor Hirohito’s surrender speech he specifically mentioned the use of this weapon against his people and understood that continuing the war would lead to Japan’s obliteration.

The projected 1 million U.S. casualties if the Japanese homeland was invaded was incentive enough to use this weapon. The tough decision to use atomic weapons ended the war that we did not start and did not want. To say it was unnecessary is pure fantasy.

Martin Marovich, Rocklin

Clean up freight transportation

Re “California leaders try to fix freight system, once again” (Viewpoints, Aug. 12): Jock O’Connell is too pessimistic about Gov. Jerry Brown’s executive order on sustainable freight. California can and should move goods through our ports, highways and railroads without endangering the health of our residents and warming the planet.

While O’Connell claims that past efforts have failed, the fact is that the mega-ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach have achieved an 80 percent reduction in toxic diesel particulate emissions over the last 10 years. The trucks that carry goods up and down Interstate 5 and other freeways are also much cleaner than in the past, because of standards and incentives coming from our air pollution agencies.

But communities near the roads, ports and railyards are still breathing too much diesel exhaust, so we need to move toward zero-emission technologies, as the governor has recognized in his executive order.

California can clean up our freight system while still growing our economy.

Bill Magavern, Sacramento

policy director, Coalition for Clean Air

Airlines need competition

Re “Airlines nickel and dime us for millions” (Editorials, Aug. 12): A few years back, airlines received billions of taxpayer dollars when they were down. Now that airlines are financially stronger, they are acting dictatorial in squeezing us all because our policies have given them monopoly over our skies.

Rather than providing better service at reasonable fares, they (American, Delta and United) filed a complaint to the Department of Transportation about foreign airlines – who provide fantastic flying experience at reasonable fares – for unfair competition.

One way to bring improvement to domestic airlines is to bring more open sky and free market competition.

Sanmukh Bhakta, Rancho Cordova

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