Letters for February 25, 2010

Pie hazards ahead

Re “Starting up in a down economy” (Feature story, by Christine G.K. LaPado, Feb. 18):

Avid readers may remember my initial attempt at pie research in the Dec. 21, 2006, CN&R article “Pie of the beholder.” As much as I have tried to avoid making additional comments on this issue, your story has forced my hand.

Back in the day, I was shocked by how difficult it was to find excellent fruit pies in Chico. I ate eight pies! Only to find out my favorites were to be had at Kalico Kitchen and Marie Callender’s, with The Upper Crust a close second.

Since then, The Upper Crust has made great pie progress. But I have got to say that the current all-time most amazing pie maker is Robin Rowe of Sweet Cottage. I ask you, how many times have you been moved to sing the praises of a baker to complete strangers? That is one of the hazards of buying Sweet Cottage pies!

Charles Withuhn

Credit is due

Re “A dangerous secret” (Newslines, by Robert Speer, Feb. 18):

Thanks for letting readers know about secret ops in Pakistan.

I didn’t get any reply from our Congress members when I wrote last October to ask them why U.S. soldiers and mercenaries were secretly in Pakistan.

I’d like to credit Walter Darran for the photograph accompanying the article, and Terry Givens for designing the cover for my book on global youth.

Gayle Kimball

She’s disgusted too

Like Dave Blau, I am disgusted with the Democrats.

I wrote to Dianne Feinstein, explaining to her why the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2009” would not help my family. I got her form response, saying, despite my needs, she had just voted for it.

“The key,” she says, “is to find a healthcare plan that will provide coverage to the millions of uninsured Americans and keep premium costs affordable, while not adding to our nation’s unsustainable federal budget deficit.”

Anthem just announced they are raising their health-care premiums by 40 percent. So much for affordable coverage.

Feinstein says the bill includes $5 billion “to help subsidize coverage for some people who have been denied due to pre-existing conditions,” even though she had said it would not add to the budget deficit. And earlier they promised us we would not be denied for pre-existing conditions.

The Democrats continue to spin this health-care reform act, until we all have motion sickness. If we protest, we are “uncivil.” I try to tell her my side and I get: “I appreciate the time you took to write to me, and I welcome this opportunity to convey my opinions on how we should reform our health care system.”

She votes how she wants.

So, I went to the DMV Web site, printed out the voter registration form, and re-registered as a Republican. Don’t get disgusted, get even.

Juanita Sumner

Are whales sentient beings?

Re “Bob Barker ship bashed” (Downstroke, Feb. 18):

I wish these Japanese whalers would just give up and leave the whales alone. They are killing whales for profit and also killing the dolphins too. How disgusting!

I read a report from a Japanese scientific research group that claims that defenders of the whales see these animals as sentient beings. Yes, they are. I am against whaling, legal or not. I protest this horrendous act on the part of the Japanese and the Norwegians.

Ali Valle
Boulder, Colo.

Toot your horn here

Re “Is this thing on?” (Scene, by Alan Sheckter, Feb. 18):

Thanks so much for the article about [Open Mikefull’s] 10-year anniversary. It’s beautifully written, and really captures the spirit of what we do.

I know I speak for everyone involved when I say that recognition and support are greatly appreciated. CN&R is the voice of the “true Chico,” in my and many other people’s opinion, so being on the cover is very gratifying. And I’m touched that the editors included a picture of an old lady like me and put my sweetie on the cover.

I know you have poetry in a drawer—or a song you want to try out on an audience. Bring it down!

Susan Dobra

Two views of marijuana

Re “Keep medi-pot local” (Editorial, Feb. 18):

Everybody is concerned about having dispensaries in residential areas, accessible to our children, which is valid. However, why is it OK to have liquor stores, which have tobacco products and alcohol, in residential areas, easily available to our youth? Tobacco and alcohol are far more deadly and kill more people every year than marijuana.

Correct me if I am wrong, but you have to be 18 years of age to even step foot into a dispensary and have a valid doctor’s recommendation. Just something to think about …

Tara Lopes

Not only should medical marijuana be made available to patients in need, but adult recreational use should be regulated, as well. Drug policies modeled after alcohol prohibition have given rise to a youth-oriented black market. Illegal drug dealers don’t ID for age, but they do recruit minors immune to adult sentences. So much for protecting the children.

Throwing more money at the problem is no solution. Attempts to limit the supply of illegal drugs while demand remains constant only increase the profitability of trafficking. For addictive drugs like heroin, a spike in street prices leads desperate addicts to increase criminal activity to feed desperate habits. The drug war doesn’t fight crime, it fuels crime.

Taxing and regulating marijuana, the most popular illicit drug, is a cost-effective alternative to a never-ending drug war. As long as marijuana distribution is controlled by organized crime, consumers will continue to come into contact with hard drugs like methamphetamine. This “gateway” is a direct result of marijuana prohibition.

Robert Sharpe, MPA
Common Sense for Drug Policy
Washington, D.C.

Midwifery options abound

Re “Midwifery heads up the hill” (Downstroke, Feb. 18):

This development is wonderful for all of the women who continue to want and need the supportive care of a certified nurse-midwife. With two updated outpatient clinics to choose from, it allows women to see the nurse-midwife in the convenient location of her choice for prenatal or gynecological care. Our Chico clinic at 1617 The Esplanade for women in the valley and our Paradise clinic at 771 Buschmann Road for women in the mountain communities are both expanded and taking new patients.

All four midwives—Cheryl Struve, Marie Roberts and Kerry Eldridge and I—have appointments available at both clinics, so women can meet everyone before they give birth at Feather River’s beautiful, family-friendly Birth Day Place. We have the full support of all of the OB/GYN physicians in Paradise if complications occur.

Lisa Catterall

Chico cops aren’t Nazis

Re “Make Chico ‘Gestapo’ free” (Letters, by Michael M. Peters, Feb. 18):

I take exception to placing the “Gestapo” label on our police officers. While I cannot speak to the Forest Service and its law-enforcement personnel, I can speak with some authority about Chico PD officers, since I have logged more than 3,300 volunteer hours with the Chico Volunteers in Police Service organization.

Stating our officers have “psychotic” personalities is wrong and slanderous. I have worked with and observed the men and women officers in Chico for the past 12 years, and I can honestly state they are always professional and show respect to the citizens of Chico.

If you have a negative opinion of our PD, I suggest that you attend the Citizens Academy and get to know our officers and PD staff. Just a thought!

Wayne Edwards