Letters to the Editor

LETTERS Bacon, concealed weapons, climate change, ‘Selma,’ etc.

Unconscionable cruelty to pigs

Re “Bacon lovers in hog heaven – and healthy” (Page A1, Jan. 23): How can you, with any ounce of moral media conscience, tout this article immediately after running Michael Moss’ New York Times article “Meat research takes heavy toll on livestock” (Page A1, Jan. 20)? If you paid any attention to Moss’ exposure of the U.S. government and the farm animal industry – and the unsustainability of meat in our diets – you would have addressed, and included in your article, the truth behind the current bacon fad and its support of unconscionable cruelty to pigs. That omission contributes to the nationwide coverup of atrocious proportions.

Americans need to know the full story behind the farm-to-fork food movement, which includes greed, cruelty and exploitation of helpless animals. Consumers have the right to know the suffering, cruelty and inhumane treatment behind the meat that they consume.

Lani Epright, Fair Oaks

Education must aim for goals

Re “Without big goals, state is settling for mediocrity” (Viewpoints, Jan. 22): Joe Mathews’ call for “big goals” for California’s future is right on target, especially as it applies to higher education. California’s Master Plan is a visionary document focused on quality, affordability and accessibility. But it has no clear goals for the contribution of higher education to the state’s workforce needs or quality of life. In recent years, several governors vetoed legislation creating a goal-setting process.

In 2011, the state’s higher education coordinating body – deciding it was imperative to act – initiated a “public agenda” goals process. The governor promptly eliminated the agency. Since then, no alternative to set statewide goals has emerged. Instead, we get ongoing disputes over cost, tuition, enrollment and mission, with no consensus about the goals the systems should be aiming for. It’s time for Californians to demand expansion of the Master Plan vision with goals that meet the whole state’s higher education needs.

Karen Humphrey, Sacramento

Guns in hands of the law-abiding

Re “Sacramento can build on historic drop in homicides” (Editorials, Jan. 22): Historically, obtaining a concealed weapons permit in Sacramento County was all but impossible. During the last 20 years, violent crime has soared. The Bee would like to give neighborhood watch programs all the credit. I feel the need to chime in. One of the first acts Scott Jones performed after being elected sheriff was to begin issuing law-abiding citizens CCWs. Since then, violent crimes, particularly murders, have plummeted. Does anybody else see a correlation here?

Tim Fairbanks, Carmichael

Are Republicans liars or fools?

Re “Senate rejects that people are causing climate change” (Page A6, Jan. 22): Sen. James Inhofe and his colleagues who reject that people caused climate change are either liars or fools. Fact: Carbon dioxide was determined to be a global heat-capturing gas in the late 1800s – long before the current debate. Fact: The proportion of CO2 in the atmosphere that comes from burning fossil fuels has been increasing since the Industrial Revolution. Fact: The amount of CO2 in the atmosphere is increasing (along with the temperature). Fact: All other sources of significant warming have been eliminated. Fact: Every major scientific organization in the world (not just in America) agrees with the above. Frankly, I believe that most are liars for their own political gain – the world be damned. But, then again, maybe they’re just fools. I will never vote Republican again until this changes.

Ron Dale, Folsom

Netanyahu, Boehner offensive

Re “Rift grows as Obama says he won’t meet Netanyahu” (Page A7, Jan. 23): As Americans, we should all be offended by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announcing that he will speak to Congress without coordinating it with the president. Israeli voters should also be offended that House Speaker John Boehner would offer Netanyahu such a prominent platform just weeks before Israel’s election. Our constitution places responsibility for foreign policy with the executive branch, making this more than just a serious breach of protocol. Boehner and Netanyahu’s attempt to embarrass Obama, undercut his policies toward Iran and simultaneously influence Israeli elections undermines our constitutional separation of powers and should alienate voters in both the U.S. and Israel.

Steven Meinrath, Sacramento

Should have done more

I was not a very good American back in the time depicted by the movie “Selma,” which I saw recently. I was in my 30s then and, like many white Americans, was outraged at the evil things being done to black Americans by some white people. Many black Americans were also outraged, of course, and many of them acted, holding rallies and marches in protest. Many outraged white Americans, the good Americans, joined in the rallies and protests. I should have, but I didn’t, so I was not a very good American. I expressed my outrage to my friends, and I made sure when I came across a black person that I wasn’t one of those bad white Americans. But I should have done more. I don’t know why I didn’t, but no reason is acceptable now. Shame on me.

Bob Schmidt, Sacramento

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