Letters for May 4, 2017

Not bike-friendly

Re “The bike issue” (Cover story, by CN&R staff, April 27):

When I first moved to Chico, I was disappointed by its road infrastructure for bikes. Perhaps my expectations were too high due to Chico’s reputation as a great place to ride. Perhaps it was having lived in Berkeley for 20 years.

Chico has a long way to go to live up to its bike-friendly reputation. I’ve tried to bike here, but don’t feel safe enough on the streets to continue doing so. Drivers kill too many bikers while drunk or due to reckless driving. There are too many streets where biking is simply unsafe, even with dedicated bike lanes (e.g., East First Avenue).

Chico needs more bike lanes and its existing lanes need to be modernized to make them more visible to cars: separated from driving lanes, painted green and clearly marked with dashed lines. Chico needs to do more to make biking safer. Only then will it truly become a bike-friendly city.

Charles Holzhauer


Beg to differ

Re “Move with the music” (Newslines, by Ken Smith, April 27):

Dorna Andersen, 1078 Gallery’s landlord, stated, “They don’t follow the rules of their lease,” and claimed that the gallery is operating as a “nightclub.” These statements are inaccurate. Our most recent lease (which ended in May 2009—we’ve been month-to-month since) states the space may be used as a “gallery, showroom, arts venue” (emphasis mine). Nowhere does it say that we may not have music events, and code enforcement recently confirmed that we’re within city of Chico guidelines in doing so.

Additionally, although having amplified music and being an “alcoholic beverage establishment” are factors in the city’s definition of “nightclub,” we don’t fit any of the other criteria, and we make only around 20 percent of our total revenue from beer sales at our events. Ms. Andersen has every right to choose a different tenant for her property, but we respectfully disagree with her characterization of the situation.

Erin Wade


Editor’s note: Ms. Wade is president of 1078 Gallery’s board of directors.


Re “Building solidarity” (Letters, by Patrick Newman, April 27):

Patrick Newman’s letters have always been mean-spirited, angry and critical. Why?

His recent letter to the CN&R praised Saul Alinsky, so admired by Obama, and his methods using the polarization of our citizens as a pathway to organizing them to change our government with protestation and anger. Mr. Newman revealed how little he respects or admires our country and its citizens.

I see, Mr. Newman, you believe our country’s filled with selfish, greedy people bent on destroying all the weak and underprivileged to get ahead.

No, it isn’t. Our country’s full of hard-working citizens just wanting to use their freedoms to benefit their families. In doing so, they’re paying taxes to support a government whose main function is to keep peace domestically and protect them from all other nations.

Our country’s a model for all the planet on how the pursuit of freedom can and should work. Is it perfect? Of course not! It’s made up of flawed human beings. But, it’s the best this planet has to offer.

No wonder those who follow your thinking yell and boo when the Pledge of Allegiance is recited. Preaching anarchy and chaos will destroy this great country.

Loretta Ann Torres


Burning the Berners

Re “Don’t blame Berners” (Letters, by Tom Reed, April 27):

Tom Reed should Google and read the Time.com article “And the 2016 Ralph Nader Award Goes to … Bernie Sanders” by Gil Troy, McGill University professor and author of The Age of Clinton. I could be accused of plagiarizing Troy had I read the article prior to writing my April 20 letter. Troy asserts that Sanders’ insurgency pushed Hillary “too far to the left.” I couldn’t agree more.

Tom Reed selectively chose to ignore Gary Johnson, Russian meddling, Wikileaks and poorly educated white dudes mentioned in my letter that contributed to Hillary’s downfall. Sometimers? It took arm-twisting from President Obama for Bernie to sheepishly pretend to campaign for Hillary. Perhaps Reed can explain why Trump and Rush Limbaugh condoned Bernie’s “mischief.” I’m sure that, unlike Tom Reed and friends, there were scores of Bernie backers who stayed home on Nov. 8, or, in other words, voted Trump.

Ray Estes


In North Korea’s defense

Re “What’s the solution?” (Letters, by Dean Carrier, April 27):

The Allies dropped more bombs on Korea than on the Pacific theater in World War II, including 32,357 tons of napalm. In 1951, Gen. Douglas MacArthur testified to Congress that the war in Korea had already almost destroyed the country of 20 million people and that he had never seen such devastation. By fall 1952, all towns and cities were scorched earth, and then the dams were bombed. The fighting ended in July 1953, when an armistice was signed, but with no peace treaty, the two Koreas are technically still at war.

To understand why the North Koreans detest the U.S., Google: MacArthur “biblical devastation resulted.”

I wonder how warm and fuzzy the USA would be if North Korea had, 60-plus years ago, devastated our population with the bloodlust described by MacArthur, yet still had 50,000 troops stationed all along the Mexican border.

Kim Jong Un is smart. He knows that unless North Korea has nuclear weapons, he and his country could meet the same fate as Saddam Hussein in Iraq, Muammar Gaddafi in Libya, and whatever the U.S. intends for Bashar al-Assad in Syria.

A peace treaty that recognizes the North Korean regime and normalization of relations between the U.S. and North Korea is mandatory.

Lucy Cooke

Butte Valley

Live on this, Congress

In my opinion, the members of the United States Congress should be required to be paid minimum wage, and since they “work” part time, they may have to consider finding a second or even third job to cover living expenses. At that rate of pay, they may not be able to get those ends close enough to meet.

J. Troy Chambers

Live Oak

Hot seat on health care

Californians came a step closer to getting comprehensive health insurance coverage for everyone when a [state] Senate bill to establish Medicare for All cleared its first major hurdle on April 26. The Healthy California Act, SB 562, passed out of committee 5-2, with one of the dissenting votes by, guess who, our district’s senator, Jim Nielsen.

Many believe that California needs its own public health insurance, structured like Medicare, but expanded to include dental, vision care and mental health. Healthy California will be administered by a single public trust, lowering overhead costs because it takes the administration of claims and payments to providers out of the hands of insurance companies. (Medicare has operated for 40 years on low overhead of 4 percent or below.) Let Sen. Nielsen (530-879-7424) know you are watching his vote on SB 562 when the bill reaches the Senate floor.

The U.S. Congress is still trying to privatize Medicare and cut Medicaid (Medi-Cal) against massive public opposition. House Speaker Paul Ryan and his cohorts haven’t succeeded in repealing the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), and they don’t actually have a replacement plan, so we still don’t know what the outcome will be. It is time to get public health insurance in place for Californians, no matter what happens at the national level.

Carolyn Dorn


Tubers, beware

The advent of warm weather is likely going to mean tubers on Butte Creek. As a longtime whitewater boater who has run the creek hundreds of times, I have a couple of small words of advice and one huge warning.

First, Butte Creek is cold and takes longer than you might think to float. You’re going to be in that water for two to three hours minimum. The people who live along the creek aren’t thrilled about you trespassing on their property to bail out halfway down. Don’t start too late in the day, and consider your abilities and tolerance carefully.

Second, save the alcohol for after you get off the river. There are some genuine dangers out there and you need all your wits about you.

And that brings me to the warning: The very high flows of this past winter have brought down some large trees. There are a number of obstacles in the channel, including some that have caused trouble for skilled paddlers. Look ahead and, if you don’t see an obvious clear channel, get out and take a closer look and consider walking around a short section. Flowing water is amazingly powerful and a body pinned by the current against a root ball or complex branching tree probably won’t come out alive.

David Welch


Never welcomed

I have been attending Bidwell Presbyterian Church for several years (over seven years). I regularly attended Sunday services and Wednesday evening dinners. In all that time, I have never felt welcomed by the pastors or other parishioners. No one sits next to me or has tried to befriend me there. I am low-income but help out wherever I can. I am a Vietnam vet, wounded twice in Vietnam. I am also a cancer survivor.

Recently, I was in a bad car accident and spent two weeks in the hospital. Even though the church was informed of the accident and my injuries, no one from the church visited me or even called to see how I was doing. I think all church-going so-called Christians should look around at the members of your congregation and see if there are people who are being ignored and made to feel unwelcome and decide if that’s the church you want to be a part of.

“Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sister of mine, you did for me.” —Matthew 25:40

Tony Nicosia



Due to an editing error, an employee of the University Police Department, Curtis Pahlka, was misidentified in a caption in last week’s story about bike thefts (see “Zeroing in on the problem,” by Gabriel Sandoval).

In the same issue, the last name of the owner of the building that long housed the 1078 Gallery was misspelled (see “Move with the music,” by Ken Smith).

We apologize for the errors, which have been corrected online. —ed.