Letters for June 1, 2017
Tasers are dangerous
Firstly, I always enjoy reading your Streetalk column, but last week’s column about arming Chico’s park rangers with guns and/or stun guns was disturbing. Statistics have proven that Tasers can be just as lethal as handguns in certain cases. Shocks from a Taser can stop the heart and/or cause cardiac problems in an individual for the rest of his life. This is something to consider if you are looking for ways to protect the park rangers.
Secondly, I am a recent transplant from the Bay Area as of one year ago. CN&R’s equivalent there is Metro, a fine paper but nowhere near as professional or entertaining as yours. However, if you keep accepting ads such as the one for Bottoms Up in Marysville, CN&R will be as sleazy as Metro in no time at all.
Don’t forget Eighth Avenue
Re “Roundabout” (Second & Flume, by Melissa Daugherty, May 25):
Did Brendan Ottoboni mention the roundabouts on West Eighth Avenue? Those were completed years ago and look like garbage. The three of them look like they are waiting to be finished!
That street is a major thoroughfare and was just left incomplete. Instead of having nice-size sidewalks, they put in those flower beds with trees! The sidewalks barely fit two adults and a stroller, and not with a dog being walked, too. I think, at the most, a handful have been planted. The rest of Eighth Avenue is lined in weed beds. You cannot assume property owners will care for beds. Put in stamped concrete. This needs to be addressed as well.
Also, Mr. Ottoboni and crew would have been better off on putting in less cement and weed strips and having an extra block of perpendicular parking adjacent to the parking lot at Second and Flume streets.
Put up or shut up
Re “It’s the media’s fault” (Letters, by Garry Cooper, May 25):
I feel the anger in your words toward Democrats and the liberal media, and that it’s your right to say whatever you want.
First of all, you claim to personally know of fake stories and misinformation—to name a few things that the liberal media are doing against “our duly elected president.” Question: When you say “duly,” does that mean winning an election with the help of a foreign government? That government, by the way, is an adversary of the United States. Please post the misinformation and fake stories you claim you know about.
Garry Cooper usually rants about public sector unions and their perceived influence on politics in California. Now he’s turned his attention to all things “liberal” and the dreaded “liberal media,” which, according to his latest rant, are “subversives to democracy.”
What a crock. Our media, the Propaganda Ministry I call it, is owned and controlled by the oligarchy (see Princeton Study 2014) that controls our country. A perfect example of that was the stenographer-like reporting of New York Times reporters Michael R. Gordon and Judith Miller of the lies of the Bush administration on weapons of mass destruction (WMDs).
The Times, the supposed bastion of the mythical liberal media, reported these lies as fact, helping create the narrative that was repeated until people believed it. A simple search of the news wires or the Internet would have led to articles in foreign news or blogs, which accurately reported that the weapons inspectors really found no WMDs.
This is why electronic media is under attack; they can’t control the content and therefore the narrative. The oligarchy needs to resurrect the Democratic party so they can continue the two-party system and the illusion of democracy!
Addressing the crisis
Re “One-sided slam” (Letters, by Tom Short, May 25):
Tom Short says the Jesus Center has done a lot of good and I agree. I hope it will continue.
We have a shelter emergency throughout California and according to the latest survey, the number of homeless in Butte County has doubled in two years. Despite the enactment of unconstitutional laws criminalizing homelessness in 2015, the number of homeless in Chico has also doubled—to about 1,000.
In this crisis, the Jesus Center should respond with ramped-up efforts to meet the need for food and clothing—not morph into a job training program for a small percentage of “worthy poor.” The Free Store, which is threatened with closure and is the only reliable source of clothing for people on the streets, must remain open. (The store is not being closed for financial reasons, nor are there duplicate services.)
Mr. Short, please join me in supporting the Free Store. Contact Jesus Center Director Laura Cootsona and let her know you support the Free Store: firstname.lastname@example.org. If we can keep it open, many people will have shoes this summer and warm coats next winter.
Short asks what Chico Friends on the Street has done. For information: email@example.com.
And along with your letter to Laura Cootsona, include a check to help maintain these essential services and a commitment to support them monthly.
Hold the line
Re “Council talks campaign cash” (Downstroke, May 18):
Chico Mayor Sean Morgan wants the City Council to consider abolishing limits on the amount that can be contributed directly to a candidate for the council. This proposal puts Morgan far outside the mainstream of judicial and legislative decisions that govern our campaign finance system, and its adoption would remove an important means for combating corruption in our local politics.
Majorities of conservative and liberal Supreme Court justices have long supported limits on direct contributions to candidates as necessary to combat quid pro quo corruption, or bribery of elected officials. Contribution limits ensure elected officials rely on a large number of people rather than a small number of big-money contributors to whom an officeholder may feel beholden. Contribution limits thus encourage lawmakers to be responsive to their constituents rather than to their financial backers.
Let’s not undermine our system of reasonable campaign finance regulation. The City Council should retain the current $500 contribution limit and consider indexing the limit to inflation to keep pace with the rising costs of communicating with voters. I also encourage our state lawmakers to support Assembly Bill 1089 to establish contribution limits for all local elections in California.
Ideology over safety
Re “Council OKs downtown district” (Newslines, by Meredith J. Cooper, May 18):
I share Councilman Randall Stone’s concerns regarding the safety risk inherent in allowing only indoor growing of marijuana. Because of Proposition 64 (supported by 61 percent of Chico voters and now state law), anyone in Chico may grow up to six plants.
I shudder at the idea of thousands of rental households, often in older homes, setting up a grow lamp in a closet or back porch. The city intends to permit and inspect indoor grows, but I doubt a young renter is going to seek landlord approval for a permit.
The Republican-majority council is putting their personal view over public safety. We do need to mitigate problems with outdoor growing, but if we don’t [allow growing outdoors], what we may smell are burning homes.
Editor’s note: Mr. Ory is a Chico City Council member.
Place your bets
I’m willing to wager a thousand rubles Mike Pence has begun removing the “Vice” from some of his personal correspondence.
Kenneth B. Keith
In last week’s Streetalk (“Should Chico’s park rangers carry guns?”), we used the incorrect photo with Anthony Passarelli’s response (Passarelli’s photo was omitted). We apologize for the mistake. —ed.