Letters to the Editor

McClintock and Yosemite; Clinton’s character; bikes and cars; Rubio cartoon

Sacramento City Councilman Steve Hansen has set a new deadline of May for soliciting proposals from bike-share operators, picking one by September and creating a “starter system” soon after that.
Sacramento City Councilman Steve Hansen has set a new deadline of May for soliciting proposals from bike-share operators, picking one by September and creating a “starter system” soon after that. Associated Press file

Amenities provide draw to Yosemite

Re “Yosemite must be protected for recreation – ‘for all time’  (Forum, Another View, Feb. 28): I may not agree with Rep. Tom McClintock on many issues, but I think he is spot on with his position on Yosemite National Park.

When our kids were young, we spent many vacations in Yosemite Valley and enjoyed all the amenities, from restaurants to the Curry Village Pool. As the kids grew, we began to enjoy the rest of Yosemite. We learned to backpack and cook our own hot breakfasts over a propane burner. Our memories now include hiking Tuolumne Canyon, climbing Mount Dana and Mount Conness.

Frankly, I wonder if any of this would have happened if we hadn’t had our introduction when our kids were too young to backpack, and I wonder if we would have been encouraged to return after our first visit without the amenities that were there.

David O. McReynolds,

Fair Oaks

Too little valley, too many people

Rep. Tom McClintock wants us to believe that restrictive environmental laws are to blame for our forests becoming dangerously overgrown and ravaged by disease, pestilence and fire. The ravages to our national forests that he mentions are due largely to climate changes that have resulted from air pollutants emitted by industrial society.

I’ve seen firsthand the destruction of Douglas fir trees by beetles in the Tahoe National Forest. These beetles know nothing of environmental laws; they just thrive in the warming temperatures affecting the Sierra Nevada. As a conservative, McClintock is interested in maintaining the polluting behaviors responsible for climate change.

He writes that the legislation his committee passed streamlines generation of revenue. And that is the dangerous mantra of Republican politicians: Make more money, environment be damned. Why he gets re-elected is not funny, it’s scary.

Larry Braybrooks,

Fair Oaks

Millions spent defining Clinton

Re “In one woman’s view, it’s about Clinton’s character” (Forum, Feb. 28): Susan Sward wrote about an intelligent, capable lady named Cyndy Pietronico who has “deep reservations” about Hillary Clinton’s character – “a gut feeling.”

I, too, keep hearing that from good people who can never tell me what nefarious thing she has done. The reason is obvious. The Republican leadership has spent the past 25 years and millions of dollars brainwashing us against her. Leaning heavily upon gender prejudice, they have spent their money and our tax dollars on phony investigations and pundits such as Limbaugh, Beck and Hannity. None of their accusations have ever proven to be true.

So, despite the fact that she is brilliant, patriotic, hardworking and much loved by those who work with her, despite the dedicated energy she displayed as secretary of state and despite the fact she is one of the most admired and respected women in the world, she continues to be mistrusted in the United States. What fools we are.

Barbara Sullivan,

Cameron Park

Fix roads first, mass transit later

Re “Not roads, but better transit options” (Forum, Another View, Feb. 28): The controversy between roads and transit appears to be never-ending. However, there are approximately 28 million vehicles registered in California. Those vehicles need roads to travel on. Good roads minimize the impact of exhaust pollution. Bad roads and poor design ensure gridlock, high pollution and lost productivity.

On Saturday while traveling between Sacramento and Yountville for my granddaughter’s play, I sat in gridlock in Dixon, Vacaville and Fairfield. It took two hours to travel 90 miles on major highways and roadways. In California, personal transportation is the primary transit system despite what some people may want. Mass transit only works in high-density communities such as San Francisco, my former home. And then, only when traveling within that community. So I say to state government: Fix the highway system first; expand transit to places that people want to go.

Albert F. Kammerer,

Sacramento

Americans love the open road

It’s hard to think of anything that has contributed more to the success, sense of freedom and happiness to most Americans than the automobile.

Efforts by people such as CalPIRG Executive Director Emily Rusch, citing MIT studies and inane statistics, or Gov. Jerry Brown spending endless billions for a high-speed train, isn’t going to change Americans’ connection with the automobile and love for the open road.

James Peace, Sacramento

No champion for bike share, routes

Re “Time right for a bike-share program” (Editorials, Feb. 28): Sacramento does not have the guts to establish and administer a Bicycle Ride Share program. And why hasn’t anyone championed improving our bicycle routes? No guts!

Robert Mandelson,

Sacramento

Don’t go too far in restricting opiates

Re “Father tries to save the next father’s son” (Forum, Dan Morain, Feb. 28): Abuse of prescription opiates has been in the news with good reason. The risk of addiction and abuse is obvious. However, we must not forget the good these drugs can do when used properly. Going too far in restricting their use can have deleterious consequences.

Over 15 years ago there was a newspaper article about a young lady afflicted with a painful nerve disorder. It was thought that she would need home health care for the rest of her life. A doctor tried a controversial treatment – heavy doses of morphine sulphate four times a day. The lethargy associated with opiates went away after a week when the body adjusted to them. The woman graduated from college magna cum laude and started her own business.

While the risk of abuse and addiction with opiates is real, one should not overlook their potential for good and their ability to provide a better life in certain circumstances.

George Alger, Placerville

Method to amend the Constitution

Re “Scalia had a negative impact” (Letters, Feb. 28): May I remind the writer that the “original intent” of the Founding Fathers includes a process to amend the U.S. Constitution, as described in Article V. It is therefore appropriate to stay as close as possible to the original intended meaning in interpreting the Constitution, as Justice Antonin Scalia did. The Founding Fathers had the wisdom to realize the possible necessity of future changes. Article V provides the process to do so.

Rudy Hendriks, Orangevale

Biased cartoon against Rubio

Re “I was hoping I could avoid kissing any babies …” (The Drawing Board, Feb. 28): Why does The Sacramento Bee show cartoons depicting Sen. Marco Rubio as an infant? He’s 44 years old, older than John Kennedy when he was elected and nearly as old as President Barack Obama, who was 47 when he took office.

Rubio has far more experience than either one of them. He was speaker of the House in Florida and is on the foreign relations committee in the Senate. Rubio’s likability numbers are sky high, and he has been ahead of Hillary Clinton in general election polls. Is this why The Bee and other liberal papers continue to show biased attitudes toward him?

Kay Walsh, Sacramento

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