Letters for June 7, 2007

‘Lose the iron fist’
Re: “Whose records are they?” (Newslines, by Robert Speer, CN&R, May 31):

Following the CUSD saga is a sad commentary of our political times. Something has unfortunately happened in our society when public agencies have regressed to run more like antiquated Iron Curtain countries than honorable organizations.

After reading “Whose records are they?” I am appreciative of Speer’s courage to take on the school district at great risk to his own career. Fear comes in many forms, and few reporters anymore are willing to do the type of ongoing investigations that we have seen from Speer. I knew Tim Crews when he was taking on dirty politics elsewhere and received retaliation for digging up the truth. It is a rare treat to have two reporters willing to stick their necks out for the public good. Keep at it for all who were victimized at some point in our lives.

The school district needs to gain a heart, lose the iron fist immediately and recognize that it will gain far more in the long run with trust and compassion than with intimidation and manipulation. What message does fear of reprisals send to everyone? Can you only imagine what would happen if teachers treated their students the way the school district treats its employees and the public? I’m embarrassed.

Chet Wheaton

Editor’s note: The Guest Comment covers a similar issue on the federal level.

Review upset their stomachs
Re: “Barely in the End Zone” (Chow, by C. Moore, CN&R, May 24):

C. Moore’s review of the End Zone has me laughing hysterically. A veggie burger and a Stella what? Scantily clad waitress? (I see more skin walking downtown). It’s obvious from his writings his mind was made up he wasn’t going to like the place the minute he arrived.

My family and I eat there all the time and were treated like gold by the owners Chuck, Paul and their wonderful staff. The food is good and plentiful with very reasonable prices. They also have a fantastic breakfast on weekends.

Vern Leathers

I know you pride yourselves on being controversial, but along with that there must be a degree of responsibility. The article on the End Zone is totally irresponsible and complete sensationalism.

First of all, if C. Moore is going to write nonsense like this, please tell him to at least have the courage to give his full name. Secondly, please publish the culinary credentials that qualify him to make these judgments…. Peoples’ livelihoods are involved here, and he thinks he is cool with his irresponsible, unqualified jibberish.

Apparently, in addition to “never-ending innings,” there was never-ending Stella Artois as well.

Freedom of the press is one thing, but so is responsible journalism. C. Moore should be ashamed, and more importantly, so should you for allowing this to go to print.

Paul Lundgren

Editor’s note: C. Moore, one of our regular reviewers, ate at the End Zone several times before writing a review.

Where were they?
Re: Art 1st Saturday map (CN&R, May 31):

Three friends and I headed out last Saturday, June 2, for Art 1st Saturday and what we hoped would be an inspiring survey of what makes Chico one of the top 10 best small art towns in America. We gazed in wonder at the strange and beautiful artwork at Lost On Main, 3rd Street Gallery and Antiques, The Chico Paper Co., Upper Crust and The 46. We enjoyed a satisfying dinner at a downtown establishment and saved room for ice-cream at another. We also did a bit of shopping at a downtown boutique.

The disappointed began when an alleged participant of this event was nowhere to be found. I don’t know why we wanted to go to a gallery called “The BAD Gallery,” but we did. We could not find it. We did, however, find other art-seekers holding their maps and milling about with puzzled looks in front of a closed-up storefront where this gallery should have been.

We shrugged our shoulders and headed over to Grilla Bites—and while they were open for business, there was no art to be found on any of their walls. We were further disappointed when at 7:45 p.m. we arrived at the Chico Art Center only to find their doors closed. How can Chico’s Art 1st Saturday thrive when a gallery that calls itself the Chico Art Center does not make this event a priority?

Art 1st Saturday is an incredible opportunity for Chico and the downtown business establishments, but it will not survive if the participants don’t participate.

C. Dorothea Curtis

Another science lesson
Re: “Nuts and bolts” (Letters, by Michael M. Peters, CN&R, May 31):

Some of Mr. Peters’ facts need a bit of revision. First, jet fuel (kerosene) does not burn at 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit, but at 1,517 degrees, and this is with complete atmospheric exposure, guaranteeing an adequate supply of oxygen. The melting point of structural steel is 2,750 degrees, and structural steel reaches its first critical threshold (where it loses 40 percent of its carrying capacity) at around 1,022 degrees. However, even at 60 percent capacity, structural steel has the ability to support three times its rated load.

The fires were black and sooty, which means they were oxygen-starved. Thus, it’s safe to say the jet fuel was burning much cooler than if exposed to open air. Even if the steel had reached the first critical threshold, it would not suddenly turn to licorice and topple the buildings.

Also, Mr. Peters’ assertion that the WTC was held together by “small bolts” is pure fantasy. While the junctions of the floor trusses were indeed bolted together, they also had 3/8-inch supporting plates welded into place at each junction, and were very strong. Thus, it would be impossible to topple the towers from “shearing bolts” as is further asserted.

If anyone wishes to read an unbiased collection of facts surrounding the 9/11 disaster, please check out www.911review.com and its sister site, www.911research.wtc7.net. These sites are absent the conspiracy theories, and actively debunk several of them as pure nonsense. However, they do agree that the official explanation of events contains too many discrepancies, and further review of the remaining evidence is needed.

David Barbara

The 10 facts based on physical evidence in my previous letter (“Evidence for a 9/11 case,” CN&R, May 24) have not been refuted. Rather, Mr. Peters makes a few wrong claims in an attempt to support the only theory our government has pursued to date—namely that fire caused the WTC collapses.

The multi-theory approach (or “multi model” in physics) is the only way to deal adequately with all the facts. Any single-theory approach is premature and causes a truncation of our intelligence; forcing us to ignore or belittle crucial parts of data.

David Kiefer

A solution
Re: “Protecting the protester” (Letters, CN&R, May 31):

We can avoid foreign oil without beating each other up about driving. We could ask Congress to pay automakers to produce low-cost electric cars. Then we’d keep the freedom to drive and the freedom to like fellow citizens who are busy drivers.

Raising gas-mileage standards bit by bit isn’t enough. Too many people are dying from cancer already. I’m sick of sucking fumes too.

Irene Cardenas