Letters to the Editor

Cuba, driver’s licenses, gas prices, etc.

Cuba uproar crosses party lines

Re “It’s long past time to end our Cold War with Cuba” (Editorials, Dec. 18): The editorial supporting President Barack Obama’s Cuba policy characterizes its opponents as driven by partisanship: “Unfortunately, some Republicans are letting their opposition to Obama blind them.”

The Washington Post, which hardly leans Republican and twice endorsed Obama for president, published an editorial titled, “Obama gives the Castro regime in Cuba an undeserved bailout.” Its conclusion: “Mr. Obama may claim that he has dismantled a 50-year-old failed policy; what he has really done is give a 50-year-old failed regime a new lease on life.”

Clearly, not just Republicans oppose Obama on Cuba.

Barry Mackintosh, Lincoln

License law bound to crash

Re “License law will make roads safer, if we do it right” (Editorials, Dec. 17): I am incredulous at your editorial wanting to hand-hold illegal immigrants through the process of obtaining driver’s licenses. What’s next? Offering them free vehicles? Gasoline cards?

“California is a ship of fools,” letter writer Larry Throop aptly wrote last week. The ship is piloted by clueless individuals like The Bee’s editorial board members. Compassion replaces common sense. Almost every policy and politician your far-left editorial board supports is bad for the state or country and turns into disaster, as will this.

Jim Hudock, Folsom

State hands drivers free pass

I earned my first driver’s license. I mean that. In high school, in 1969, an extensive class for an entire semester was required to meet state requirements. We learned that driving was a privilege, not a right. Today’s youths must take driver’s education also through a licensed company. Many parents require that their child earn good grades to earn their right to drive.

I truly believe that people seeking freedom and happiness should be welcomed to our fabulous country. That being said, it does not make it right for illegal immigrants who do not speak any English to get the right to drive. Where is the requirement to know English – for example, knowing what the word “yield” means?

How will this make our roads safer?

Sally Besser, Vacaville

Give fracking some credit

Re “Gas price decline has a side benefit” (Editorials, Dec. 17): The Bee’s editorial about the decline in gas prices neglected to mention why consumers can fill up their tanks for less than $50. Thanks in large part to fracking, an energy revolution is underway in America. Increased domestic production has reduced our reliance on oil imported from overseas. As your editorial pointed out, this has weakened Vladimir Putin and could reduce tensions in Ukraine.

It’s a shame that some extremists want to put an end to our energy independence by pushing for bans on hydraulic fracturing. Misguided hydraulic fracturing bans will only drive up prices at the pump and give foreign countries more control over our energy future.

Eric Eisenhammer, Roseville

Liberal energy mindset derailed

Re “Senate leader targets coal firms” (Page A1, Dec. 16) and “Experts question pipeline’s validity” (Page A1, Dec. 16): Two front-page articles clearly illustrate California’s liberal insanity. In the first article, we’re told about “disinvestment” since the time of apartheid being seen as a way to exert pressure on large institutions. Oh, now I get it. Liberals think they’re fighting evil, and coal burning is the modern equivalent of apartheid. If legislators really want to disinvest in coal, they should move to Sacramento and ride bikes to work.

In the second article, we’re told that backers of the Keystone XL pipeline could win approval, yet never build the project. Heaven forbid. You mean they might actually take economics into consideration? Where are the articles about the validity of the bullet train now that gas prices have plunged?

Ah, but when the train fails, liberals won’t have to explain because they were on the side of good.

Chris Ewing, Carmichael

Stop paying retiree benefits

Re “Retiree health plan is aired” (Capitol & California, Dec. 17): I was shocked to hear that this state’s retiree unfunded medical benefits obligations total $71.8 billion. I worked for more than 20 years for Sacramento County and watched my medical and dental benefits shrink. Finally, the county discontinued paying for most retiree medical and dental benefits altogether, with the exception of a few groups with contract obligations.

This should be the new norm. Many state retirees’ pensions are above 50 percent of their final pay. It might be better to just minimize the costs on those making the higher dollars and encourage them to hang in there until Medicare is available to them instead of taxpayers supporting a failed system.

Alan Sears, Sacramento

Eviction article sensationalized

Re “Attempted eviction of woman, 83, heads to jury” (Our Region, Dec. 17): While I sympathize with Dorothy Morris, the article completely sensationalizes the facts, both the headline and in its telling.

To state that Sacramento Manor is “moving ahead with its holiday season effort to evict an 83-year-old woman from her home” and portraying the owners as heartless landlords is a one-sided display of histrionics.

The Manor is not required to stay in the Section 8 program, and it advised tenants that the program will no longer be available. Those tenants moved or took care of the issue.

Morris can believe this is personal and has the right to her day in court; however, she was not the only one asked to leave. She was given the 90-day notice in August, months before the holidays.

Jennifer Harwood, Sacramento

Give thanks for needed rain

Re “Don’t stop conserving water” (Letters, Dec. 15): Here we are in the middle of receiving an abundance of rain and we are complaining that it is not enough. We have not even started winter yet, and it is not enough.

What an ungrateful lot we are! Like the spoiled child on Christmas morning looking at the presents under the tree and whining that he wants more.

We should bow our heads and be on bended knees to humbly give thanks to God for healing the parched land with life-giving water.

James Emanuel, Vacaville

Obama could use body cam

Re “Body-cam use by cops is up” (Page A1, Dec. 14): If the use of body cams is supposed to improve accountability and transparency, then President Barack Obama needs to wear one as well for those same reasons.

Both have been absent in his presidency.

Will Carpentier, El Dorado Hills

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