Letters for February 11, 2016

‘Win-win scenario’

Re “Give what you can” (Editorial, Feb. 4) and “Sanctuary in need” (Newslines, by Ernesto Rivera, Jan. 28):

With the situation getting worse for the continued daily operation of the Torres Community Shelter, I think that this idea could be a win-win scenario: I believe that the Jesus Center should take over the operations at the Torres Shelter. This would add more services to an already excellent facility. Torres has recently added a kitchen, so meals can be prepared to feed the needy just like the Jesus Center.

I think that the Jesus Center should then put up their building for sale and move operations over to the Torres Shelter. 1. It would save money because there are buses that transport people back and forth; 2. It would help keep those who attend the Jesus Center from hanging out around local Park Avenue businesses and the downtown area; 3. Combining both operations together would benefit the people involved with better and more efficient services; and 4. Proceeds from the sale of the Jesus Center building could be used for any needed expansion and wages for staff.

I believe that God has his hand in this situation and, with a little prayer and willingness among both sides, this merger could benefit everyone in our community.

Dave Donnan


Turbocharging neo-fascism

Re “An opponent emerges” (Newslines, by Howard Hardee, Feb. 4):

In your story on the nomination contest brewing between “unapologetically conservative” Joe Montes and Rep. Doug LaMalfa, Montes is presented as a common-ground kinda guy. But there is no reference to the elements of electability in District 1: support for abortion recriminalization, gun proliferation, military expansionism, environmental autism and rich-on-poor class warfare. I’d be very surprised if there are fundamental philosophical differences between right-wing Montes and right-wing LaMalfa.

Montes came to Chico to work for mega-landlord Wayne Cook and became a channeler of Cook’s views on homelessness (see KZFR 2013). That was during the first wave of anti-homeless hysteria, when the Orchard Church homeless outreach was pressured-out of City Plaza—in large part by Cook.

Last September, Montes was in the council chambers supporting a new raft of homeless-criminalization statutes: another rendition of the punitive and ideology-bound approach to disability and poverty—bespeaking minimal empathy and scant moral insight.

Chico is increasingly controlled by a neo-fascist clique: the Enterprise-Record, the Mark Sorensen/Sean Morgan council and wealthy businessmen. Giving Montes a seat in Congress would turbocharge this engine of extremism. I’d prefer to suffer on with “Richvale” Doug LaMalfa—and, given the practical insignificance of my Democratic Party primary vote, I’ll probably be voting for Doug.

Patrick Newman


BEC’s hypocrisy

Re “Row on the creek” (Newslines, by Howard Hardee, Jan. 28):

I’m disappointed in Butte Environmental Council and its attempts to sabotage a very well thought-out, state-of-the-art recycling and renewable energy project in Glenn County. Particularly when part of BEC’s mission is education and awareness of recycling and that there is no “away.” BEC’s RARE program- (Recycling and Rubbish Education) is funded by the Neal Road Landfill tipping fees. That seems like a conflict of interest, since Neal Road Landfill has been opposed to this project from the beginning.

How is it that on BEC’s website the organization laments that there’s so little space left at NRLF and bemoans the fact the NRLF is the largest man-made structure in Butte County (www.becnet.org/rare-newsletter-articles)? BEC pleads for members of the public to do all they can to divert waste away from the landfill and yet opposes a recycling project whose very mission is to do exactly that? It wreaks of hypocrisy.

David Gerard


‘Are you kidding me?’

Re “Film wars” (Cover story, by Bob Grimm, Jan. 28):

After reading Juan Carlos Selznick’s intelligent, thoughtful and informed film reviews for the last several decades, I was surprised to see that your piece on the best and worst films of 2015 was written by Bob Grimm.

Nevertheless, I thought I’d see what he had to say. Really? A “crapload of great movies,” Hollywood taking a “big dump” on us, Oscar Isaac’s “charismatic ass,” Chris Hemsworth “suck[ing] major ass,” and “About Fifty Shades of Grey”: “This movie is about as erotic and romantic as sticking your dick into into a vat of hardened, moldy bacon grease and stroking your butthole with a recently deceased parakeet.” What? Are you kidding me? Not smart. Not funny. And makes the ordinarily sophisticated Reel World section of the paper look, well, just shitty—and the CN&R a whole lot less credible.

Stephen Metzger


A contaminated site

Chico Scrap Metal (CSM) has been smashing and bundling metals across from Sierra Nevada Brewery on East 20th Street since 1983. Unfortunately, metal recycling sheds lead, arsenic, cadmium, chromium and other toxic chemicals like PCBs. Health exposure risks include organ, nerve and brain damage, diabetes, cancers and developmental/behavioral delays. Children and pregnant women are at greatest risk.

CSM removed dangerously contaminated soil to a hazardous waste landfill in 2007, including soil along the public sidewalk on East 20th Street. But the California Department of Toxic Substances Control confirmed the site is still contaminated with PCBs.

The city and Butte County approved the Chapmantown/Mulberry Neighborhood Plan in 2004, recognizing that metal processing is not compatible with residential neighborhoods. After years of CSM extensions and excuses, the city is considering letting the business continue to operate in its highly profitable location, with little change besides “aesthetic landscaping.”

Are we willing to allow PCBs, lead and other heavy metals to be shed continuously into Chapmantown, so close to Chapman Elementary School, East 20th Street Park, Dorothy Johnson Park, several daycare centers and homes filled with families?

This is not safe, ethical or sustainable in a residential neighborhood!

Adrienne Edwards


Quest for intelligence

News that NASA will launch the 320-foot quad engine Orion Scout to analyze ultra-important rotational speeds of asteroids was equally as alarming as the blaring timbre of the U.S. national debt clock. Its ringing expediently toward $20 trillion with $240 billion in interest and a federal budget deficit of $450 billion.

This is in conjunction with crumbling infrastructure nationwide, quadrillions squandered on excessive military, corrupt and untrustworthy financial institutions, rampant poverty and homelessness, escalating mental illness everywhere and precious children still suffering miserably in the frigid wind and rain on dilapidated ground to learn athletics because they are without indoor facilities.

Yet we ‘re spending exorbitant amounts of time, energy and our lunch money pursuing asteroids? It would be so sweet to at least hitch a free ride—perhaps there is true intelligence out there somewhere..

Kenneth B. Keith

Los Molinos

DNC funny business?

I remember Dick and Jane reader books, so simple a first-grader could understand them. “Cheat, Hillary, cheat,” said Jane. “Out in front of everybody,” exclaimed Dick. “Count, Hillary, count” mimed Jane as the Democratic National Committee claimed a caucus 100 percent for Bernie was a Hillary win in Woodbury County No. 43. “Super, Hillary, super,” yelled Dick as even NPR noted: Clinton leads Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders 359 to 8 electoral votes before the first Iowa vote was cast. Jane spun a circle on the grass while Spot barked “Rough, Hillary, rough,” the media won’t report it.

“Special place in hell, special place in hell,” Dick slyly murmured, while Hillary defends Madeleine Albright over a statement that there’s a “special place in hell” for non-Hillary women voters. “Fickle as a pickle,” Jane shamed young girls because Gloria Steinem suggested young women are backing Bernie Sanders so they can meet boys. “Transpose those numbers,” mocked Dick as in Knoxville No. 3 as 58 people for Sanders and 52 people for Clinton means Clinton wins. “That’s how it was recorded,” gushed Jane. “Let’s vote, let’s vote,” Dick exclaimed as he jumped in the air. “It doesn’t matter who; the DNC has already decided,” shouted Jane.

B.K. Brooks


Kudos to the community

In anticipation of 2-1-1 Day on Feb. 11, Butte 2-1-1 wants to express our sincere appreciation to First 5 Butte County Children and Families Commission, Butte County Association of Governments, Cal Trans, Butte County Employment and Social Services and Child Abuse Prevention Council for their continued commitment for 2-1-1 services that connect our neighbors with help. In 2015, our 2-1-1 center answered nearly 7,000 calls from people seeking help such as housing, income assistance, food, legal, mental health, healthcare, transportation and other information.

As we celebrate this day, we want to remind you how you can sustain these vital services. Please consider donating to 2-1-1 by visiting butte211.org and clicking “Donate Now.” Your donation keeps the 24-hour live helpline operating so we can assist people in need with finding over 750 community resources that provide help. We celebrate that in our community we take care of each other. We know that a thriving community means everyone deserves an opportunity to succeed in school, work and life.

Thank you, Butte County! Remember, if you want to give or get help, just dial 2-1-1.

Lynn Haskell