Letters for December 29, 2016

Punishment unfitting

My Jan. 7, 2016, guest comment condemned District Attorney Mike Ramsey’s dismissing Patrick Feaster’s videotaped slaying of Andrew Thomas as “accidental.” Since shooting a Glock .45 requires first releasing its automatic safety, Feaster’s shooting was clearly intentional.

Ensuing public outrage ultimately induced Ramsey’s charging Feaster with involuntary manslaughter. However, after a swift guilty verdict, on Dec. 9 Judge James Reilley sentenced him to just three to six months in jail.

I hope the Thomas family’s settlement was substantial. That is, especially after Thomas’ sister testified that Ehorn never let anyone drive her vehicle. Accordingly, it seems likely Ehorn—not Thomas—was driving.

Such an innocuous jail sentence might not effectively deter other cops from similarly injuring innocents.

Further, beyond age 3, punishment largely only fosters rebellion. Accordingly, instead of jail time, Reilley’s sentencing should have first entailed treating the psychological factors that caused Feaster to shoot Thomas.

Then, under close supervision, Feaster should have received training in a career enabling him to reimburse the lawyers, courts, jail, doctors, hospital and insurance company for his negligence. Otherwise, these expenses would be shifted to the public through increased taxes and insurance costs.

Nathan Esplanade


‘Tiresome’? I think not

Re “Tiresome template” (Letters, by Carl Ochsner, Dec. 22):

I’m in the doghouse: I’ve burdened Carl Ochsner with “tiresome” critiques of his beloved status quo and I’ve exploited the Ghost Ship tragedy.

As to the “tiresome” angle: I do sermonize on the abuse of people, animals and the environment—abuse rooted in our consumeristic and predatory economic system and culture. I’ve explored the anti-populism of privileged feminists (Hillary Clinton, et al.); the hypocrisy of high-consuming eco-sentimentalists; and, the utter cowardice of Chico’s liberals, who are, by and large, complicit in homeless criminalization. I don’t doubt this entire package is offensive to those of Ochsner’s ilk. But, the word “tiresome” is tiresome; it’s passive-aggressive and nebulous. Instead, let’s hear a specific position—something controversial enough to incur a social cost.

As to exploiting the Ghost Ship: On reading the profiles of fire victims, I was impressed with the revolutionary spirit of the Ghost Ship community. I may lack their courage, but I think of them as kindred spirits. And, I’d be surprised if anyone in the Bay Area counterculture would see Ochsner’s letter—denying the nexus of wealth inequality and the shelter crisis—as anything other than a defense of economic tyranny.

Patrick Newman


Time to unite

With the uncertainty of what is going to take place with our new administration, it seems important to have Washington hear our voice.

Women’s issues are at the heart of many proposals that will be coming up for preview if campaign promises are kept. Therefore, on Jan. 21, there will be a Women’s March in Washington, D.C., as well as here in Chico and Sacramento. Many other towns throughout the country will participate also.

It is not a protest but a march to stand in solidarity with men and women for the protection of our rights, our safety, our health and our families.

There will be a bus from Chico to Sacramento and preregistration is available at sacwomensmarch@gmail.com.

Sandy Hill



Due to an editing error in a story last week about Chico Country Day School’s literary project, the second half of the penultimate paragraph was attributed to Amy Anderson, manager of Made in Chico. In fact, those were the author’s words. We regret the error, which has been corrected online. —ed.