Re “At last, reason finds a voice in measles debate” (Editorial, Feb. 6): I had measles when I was a child, with hallucinations and a high fever. I remember being terrified, seeing hundreds of big black spiders coming out of the light switch in my bedroom. I had German measles as an adult while working in a medical program in Vietnam in the 1970s and lost my 6-month-old unborn baby as a result. I had mumps my first year as a teacher and was very sick. I wish I could have been immunized before these things happened to me.
When I was a child, there were no car seats or seat belts or airbags. Nor were there bike helmets or a variety of other safety devices. Most of us believe in progress and in the common good and that in a society, everyone must participate in order to protect everyone.
Claudia Krich, Davis
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Separate the vaccines
You ask why parents can’t voluntarily do the right thing. I ask why the drug companies and medical community have forced us into this position. The increase in unvaccinated children mirrors the unavailability of the separate vaccines. Every mother I know would vaccinate immediately if they could get the protection without the MMR-MEGA combo dose. Three years ago we could still vaccinate our kids more slowly for a little longer by doing the shots one at a time. That option was taken away. The reason? It was more expensive to manufacture and less convenient to administer. The medical profession must take some of the responsibility because they give us no choices.
Rory Barlew, Sacramento
Education isn’t intelligence
Re “Keep parental choice” (Letters, Feb. 7): Andrew Rubin would have us believe that “highly educated families” would pull their nonimmunized kids from public schools if vaccinations were made compulsory and that those schools would be “hurt in unintended ways.”
Is he implying that requiring immunization is an intended hurt? Beyond that, is he referring to, not just the daily attendance stipend from the state but the corresponding all-important student scores on tests which make up the schools’ rankings? Or that the students of responsible parents will be academically injured by the departure of children of the intellectual elite?
In a humorous vein, perhaps the irresponsible parents who avoided the Darwin award to this point would like to try for a second-generation award? Nonvaccination is simply, well, words sufficient to describe that action are difficult to find.
Bill Henson, Woodland
Becerra vs. Harris
Re “Latino choice to fill Boxer seat urged by caucus” (Page A1, Feb. 4): I appreciate the efforts of the Latino caucus to promote one of their own, but “it’s time” is a fundamentally weak argument. If Kamala Harris’ quick start out of the gate is successful in locking up the Democratic nomination before a Latino candidate’s campaign gets off the ground, that speaks more to her political skills than to whether an important ethnic group is missing a golden opportunity to advance its representation.
Instead of simply chiding Willie Brown for “anointing” Harris, those in favor of an alternative should be singing their candidates’ praises and qualifications. Rep. Xavier Becerra would make an excellent U.S. senator. I remember him from his debut as a legislative staffer at the state Capitol in 1980. He is as intelligent and diligent as anyone else in the state’s congressional delegation. We should all keep an eye on him.
Anthony Barcellos, Davis
PG&E came for us, too
Re “PG&E is being a corporate bully by cutting down Oroville trees” (Viewpoints, Feb. 6): I live in Woodside, a small community in Arden-Arcade, known for its beautiful landscape. PG&E has high-tension lines through our property, and for many years we have worked together to meet their safety requirements and keep our urban forest. We have allowed PG&E to prune or remove trees. They have given us replacements that we planted according to their directions. In past years, our interactions were very cordial and productive. This year, we also feel that we are dealing with a corporate bully.
PG&E intends to remove 40 trees, including some replacement trees chosen by them and planted to their specifications. There is no cordiality, no concession and no compromise. Must some of us be arrested in an attempt to preserve our greenbelt? Even then we have no confidence that PG&E would enter into good-faith negotiations.
The situation in Oroville does not inspire optimism.
Dorothy Wooldridge, Sacramento
Students should be grateful
Re “Unrest simmers at UC Davis” (Our Region, Feb. 6): Since when do we let Muslim extremist students make demands on the UC regents to take action against our Jewish friends and allies? These Muslim students should be grateful to have access to a college education instead of promoting hate-filled, un-American actions.
Wayne Ertl, Orangevale
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