Letters to the Editor

Panama Papers, U.S. debt, grade inflation, Sacramento Kings

Why whine about U.S. debt?

Re “Some Americans may be sweating leaks about offshore shell companies” (Insight, April 7): The “Panama Papers” are exposing those who hide money in offshore shell companies to avoid taxes. They may be involved in corruption and crime. A few prominent world leaders and family members have been named. I keep reading about more than a hundred other people, but they haven’t been named.

Unfortunately, this Panamanian law firm is just the tip of the dirty money iceberg. In a TV interview, information taken from investigations disclosed that there is $73 trillion out there in numerous similar accounts, 80 percent which have avoided paying taxes. Why does part of our political establishment keep crying about the U.S. debt while protecting these loopholes for the wealthy?

Richard Kuechle, Lincoln

Real culprits in grade inflation

Re “Instructors must own up to their role in grade inflation” (Viewpoints, April 5): I believe the real culprits are university systems that give undue weight to evaluations by anonymous and unaccountable students. While the writer says that faculty raise grades to avoid formal disputes, it’s far easier for students to take down a faculty member in their evaluations or on ratemyprofessors.com without a hint of accountability.

As an adjunct who had a long previous career, I’ve been amazed at a lack of professionalism and respect built into treatment of part-time faculty. If student evaluation scores fall below an average of 4.00 out of 5, we’re expected to write letters of explanation. The dean recently awarded me a 3-year contract – in a letter that focused solely on the range of my student evaluations. Since a frequent complaint from disgruntled students is too much work, the underlying message to vulnerable faculty seems obvious.

Rebecca LaVally, Carmichael

Kings are still our team

I’m a stalwart Sacramento Kings fan, but lately I’ve been imagining the life of a Golden State Warriors fan. It would be more fun if my team won 90 percent of its games, and I think I’d be happier if my team’s star wore a grin instead of a constant scowl.

Yes, that would be nice, but the Warriors are not Sacramento’s team. Despite decades of off-court drama and on-court disappointments, the Kings are still my team. When I attend their games with my son or grandson or friends, I have fun – even when they are losing, and next year they will play in Sacramento’s cool new arena.

As the season ends, the Kings again are not competing in the playoffs, but I’d rather feel frustrated than dispassionately watch a team wearing Kings jerseys emblazoned with the name of a different city.

Bob Dreizler, Sacramento

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