Letters to the Editor

Letters: Court row, Donald Trump, smoking, new economy

Mario Weaks, a sales associate at The Vapor Spot on J Street in midtown Sacramento, exhales from his e-cigarette. Letter writers respond to pending legislation to raise the legal smoking age to 21 in California.
Mario Weaks, a sales associate at The Vapor Spot on J Street in midtown Sacramento, exhales from his e-cigarette. Letter writers respond to pending legislation to raise the legal smoking age to 21 in California. Sacramento Bee file

Stop playing politics, senator

Re “Obama, GOP brace for battle” (Page 1A, March 18): Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says the people should have a say in filling the Supreme Court vacancy. The people did so in 2012 by re-electing Barack Obama.

The president is fulfilling his constitutional duties. Your duty, senator, is to advise and consent on that nomination, not to play politics.

Richard Nano, Roseville

Is this nightmare happening again?

My parents were born in prewar Poland. Because of that country’s strong anti-Semitism, we the left for friendlier places like Paris.

My father was well-read, an excellent chess player and learned to look many steps ahead not only in games but in life. He became very concerned when the Germans voted for a strongman to be their savior against “outsiders.”

Our family moved to Argentina in 1939, which would come under the thrall of Juan Perón. Prior to his election, we emigrated to America. We became citizens.

During the past six months, a gnawing sensation of impending doom has come over me. Donald Trump has developed a cultish and violent following. Discriminatory proclamations are made against immigrants. The world is looking at us with shock and disdain.

Is history repeating itself?

George Broder, Penn Valley

Can Donald Trump go the distance?

Re “Stop Trump groups press on despite primary wins” (Nation, March 17): The bushel basket of Republican candidates has been winnowed by the winds of pent-up voter anger and frustration. Up to now, Donald Trump has made the most of these winds. But it remains to be seen what is left on the threshing floor. Is there wheat or is there chaff?

The remaining Republicans, save Trump, have established policy positions. Trump, on the other hand, has yet to tell us what policies he will employ to turn his bombast into something usable. The time for him to show his substance is now. The gusts of electoral winds blow stronger at the convention, and become a gale at the general election. Will he scatter in the wind, or does he have the weight to be worth voting for?

Michael McMurry,

Suisun City

Enforce this anti-smoking law

Re “Smoking age of 21, vaping restrictions are one step away in California” (Nation, March 10): I am not opposed to raising the legal age to 21 for buying tobacco products. But unless this law is vigorously enforced, it will make little difference.

Several years ago The Sacramento Bee reported an unofficial sting operation survey and found that most tobacco vendors were prepared to sell to underage buyers and even single cigarettes. We need real sting operations to be common and the consequences to be substantial. Or else what’s the difference?

Gabriel Lewin, Davis

Sugary drinks are dangerous, too

Soft drinks cause serious health problems for kids, such as an increase in diabetes. Why not pass a law raising the legal age for the purchasing of soft drinks to 21? If you think the tobacco lobbyists are powerful, wait until the soft drink lobby gets in gear.

A.J. Ponzo, Rocklin

New economy is here to stay

Re “We should heed Ike’s warning about technological elites” (Viewpoints, March 13): Richie Ross is misguided in his assertion that tech platforms like Uber, TaskRabbit, Handy and Lyft “strip power away from people.” These platforms are empowering people across vast socio-economic backgrounds to take advantage of their skills, earn extra income or in some instances enjoy new opportunities to work that never existed in the old economy and old paradigms from the Eisenhower era Ross would prefer us to remember. The app economy creates a new opportunity to reimagine our safety net structures to ensure that as the sharing economy redefines the “work” marketplace, we adjust accordingly.

The challenge California faces is finding the most effective way to safeguard worker rights and provide benefits moving forward. We don’t yet know how we will conquer this challenge, but Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez’s bill is certainly not the answer.

Mike Montgomery,

San Francisco

Simple climate change solution

There is a painless solution to climate change: revenue-neutral carbon fee and dividend. Simpler than cap and trade, a gradually increasing carbon fee is charged at the wellhead or coal mine. All the fee revenue is rebated back to American households on an equal-share basis, stimulating economic growth as it assures a steady transition to clean technology.

Bob Rodger, Los Osos


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