Letters for February 15, 2007

Truth consequences?
Re: “The truth is out there” (In My Eyes, by Evan Tuchinsky, CN&R, Feb. 8):

I wanted to thank you for your discussion about questions regarding the WTC 9/11 disaster both on Saturday [Feb. 3 on KZFR] and in the paper. I hope it didn’t cause too much trouble for you.

It did for me. The [KZFR] Program Council replaced me as host of The Point Is … on Saturdays. I had auditioned for the show and filled all the requirements, but four days after the show the Program Council had one of their own (Sue Hildebrandt, a political-science professor) replace me. Little did I know that, although KZFR professes free speech and noncommercial content, they bow to the same corporate and political pressures that guide all media today. I was canned.

I encourage everyone to question and discuss the “facts” as they relate to our current political culture. Many believe that the illegal controls that our (secret) government is exercising, such as the jailing of journalists and trial without due process, are happening elsewhere, but they are occurring right here in Butte County.

“Inalienable” and “rights” mean just that in the Constitution. We must be watchful and outspoken, or those who are watching and doing all the talking will have their way. When Bush speaks, know it is a lie.

Dick Witman

Editor’s note: KFZR General Manager Jill Paydon said Witman was one of several substitute hosts on
The Point Is …—though the program council did not select him for this show, she said he can apply for another open shift.

A couple other responses
Since learning that Dick Cheney and his cohorts wrote in PNAC [Project for a New American Century] that it would take a Pearl Harbor to put their plans into action, I’ve had suspicions about 9/11. Was it just a lucky coincidence? Their president, who was down in the polls, suddenly became a leader, and his ratings shot up. And what Cheney et al. wanted ever since PNAC was drawn up was to invade the Middle East. Now they were in a position to do so.

And is it so far-fetched that G. W. Bush, a born-again Christian, would condone killing thousands of his own people? After all, he does carry the title of “the killingest governor of Texas” [regarding the death penalty].

Dorothy Biby

I’m certain you’ll receive a lot of static regarding your 9/11 conspiracy “intrigue.” I hope you also receive the praise you deserve for daring to ask uncomfortable questions. Our freedom is built on our right to free speech; this seems so elementary to most educated people I know. Yet as your account of what is happening to Josh Wolf demonstrates, press freedom is dangerously threatened (“A shameful record,” Editorial, CN&R, Feb. 8).

I was impressed by the entire edition this week. Kudos for including a long-term committed gay relationship among the features on married couples (“A happy marr… relationship,” Cover Story sidebar). I use the Chico News & Review to demonstrate to my friends in Sacramento and the Bay Area that Chico really does have culture and sophistication.

Julie Boone

Setting us straight
Re: “History prof: Why Bush shuns North Korea” (Newslines, by Bryce Benson, CN&R, Feb. 8):

Since I was not in attendance at Prof. [Jim] Matray’s lecture, I sincerely hope it was your error, and not his, to omit to state in your article that on June 25, 1950, on the orders of Kim Jong Il’s father, Kim Il-Sung, North Korea attacked South Korea.

Munich 1938 should have taught everyone that negotiating with lunatic aggressors like Hitler and Kim Jong-Il accomplishes nothing but to encourage and facilitate the aggressors in their aggression. How many more Holocausts must we suffer before this lesson sinks in? Negotiating with North Korea’s incredibly barbaric regime will only help it commit genocide somewhere, just like negotiating with Nazi Germany did.

P.S.: North Korea’s barbarism, not anything the U.S. has done, is why North Korea is dark and South Korea “looks like a light bulb.”

Chad Wozniak, Ph.D.

Setting selves straight
Re: “Love is funny” (Cover Story sidebar, by Liz Merry and Aaron Standish, CN&R, Feb. 8):

As much as we enjoyed our own wonderful story, we feel the need to correct ourselves on one point. When we wrote, “We’re pretty sure no one else but Brut Max couples and fake lesbians fight over wigs and dresses,” we obviously forgot about our friends (and fellow love scribes) Bob and Trish Howard. We’re thinking [Scott] Gruendl and [Nicholas] Goody probably share clothes, too. And who knows about those wild and crazy Mounts [Pastor Tom and Lynn]? Apologies one and all.

We also couldn’t help noticing that you kept the line about Aaron being an a**hole, but cut the line about Liz being a b*tch. If we’d have known you were going to cut it, we would have used a dirtier word.

Finally, we’re using that scary photo of us as a “Before” shot for our Diet Through Humiliation Plan.

Otherwise, we were brilliant and can’t wait to read it again!

Liz Merry and Aaron Standish

Reform + funds = success
Re: “Drug treatment funding up in air” (Newslines, by Meredith J. Cooper, CN&R, Feb. 8):

Thank you for the update on the challenges of Prop 36. The work being done in Butte County is truly one of making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.

Across the state, it is clear that 36 requires reform. Reform was passed and is stalled in the courts. Hopefully we will get the reforms needed and the governor will support full funding. He will not support the incompetent implementation of this expensive initiative by county governments elsewhere. Nor should he. The taxpayers should get better results for their funding. If we got those reforms, and some decent funding increases, the program can be quite exceptional.

Eventually, the city councils and Board of Supervisors in this county need to set a funding priority for doing what works to reduce crime and recidivism. For over a decade, Butte County has been famous across the nation, but underappreciated at home, for the incredible work done in the DUI and Drug Court programs. Some other cities have passed a quarter-cent sales-tax increase or have dedicated funding sources for treatment court programs. We need to do so here.

Instead of bringing these courts to scale, they are being starved. This is an investment in the future. We need to focus on local solutions to local problems and put our local dollars to work on this problem.

Helen Harberts

Editor’s note: For more information on the reforms to Prop. 36, which were signed into law as Senate Bill 1137 and are now stalled in court, see “Drug-treatment law gets altered”.

Sustainable promotion
Re: “Billboard driver replies” (Letters, by B. Lapple, CN&R, Feb. 8):

I totally support your right to be an entrepreneur and try to succeed in a small business. It’s difficult. I know. I’m sure you’re in compliance with all codes and that you’re also a very courteous driver—but I think you missed my point.

Chico is a rapidly growing town where already the traffic and pollution are becoming very noticeable. It would be nice to see more progressive thinking.

How about ads on the side of the bus? (Of course! They already do it.) Local taxis? Using some of the art space downtown for creative and imaginative ads on a rotation basis? Why not bikes? If we’re going to have homeless and workless people downtown, why not bring back the old sandwich boards (the kind you wear and walk around)? Mr. Pickle is OK—he has a job.

Now that our fearless leader (Bush) has admitted the planet is getting warmer, I would like to think that you, I and everyone could come up with something better than one more car and trailer driving around town in circles.

W. A. Strom