Letters for October 30, 2003

Bar exam
Chico Theater Company opened to the public on Oct. 1. We have met with a lot of appreciation and support, both from the public and from other area theater groups. In our enthusiasm to fill a void that we felt existed due to a lack of ongoing musical theater, statements that were made may have been misconstrued.

The Chico area theater companies are producing some outstanding theater and are to be highly commended for taking audiences to new and different places. They practice a commitment to excellence in theater and have provided that excellence in many top notch productions.

When CTC sought to enter the marketplace, it was for three reasons: One, there was a need for an ongoing musical-theater venue; two, we felt that the greater Chico area had a tremendous pool of talent to draw from; and three, we felt confident that the public would support our efforts.

In several interviews we used the term “raising the bar.” This was not meant to suggest that we felt that Chico “theater” was substandard. The term was used in reference to the presentation of theater in Chico. We want “going to the theater” to be a special event. We want attending CTC to be an exciting and different experience. If anyone has taken offense to the term “raise the bar,” we sincerely apologize for not more clearly stating our intentions and meanings in the use of this phrase.

Marc Edson
Managing Director

Brian Holderman
Artistic Director
Chico Theater Company

One man’s trash…
After reading the article [Inside view, Oct. 9] in your newspaper, I went and saw the photographs about the litter that has plagued our town and saw the first-, second- and third-place photos. To see them was impressive with the talent of the photographers. Unfortunately, I feel that the judges (who were not named) were completely unqualified as to who deserved first place. The pictures were supposed to have creativity, color and style. The only photo that had creativity was by Peter Piatt, the third-place winner.

His photo showed the massive litter and creativity with the raccoon holding her baby, depicting the detriment that litter causes the environment and habitants. How can the judges defend their placement of winners and not put Peter Piatt’s as No. 1? Remember his name, because he will be a well-known photographer in the near future, I’m sure. By the way, were the winners given awards or just recognition?

Kathryn Persha

Greens want reform
The Green Party of Butte County supports City Council member Dan Nguyen-Tan’s efforts at campaign finance reform. The Green Party platform argues that money is a corrupting influence on our political system and “plays a larger role in elections (like City Council) where voters are not choosing between parties, and candidates with more money can distinguish themselves from the pack.”

But the Green Party of Butte County also believes that Mr. Nguyen-Tan’s efforts do not go far enough. We call for deep systematic reform. In our platform we “reject the notion that money in political campaigns is free speech, as interpreted by the Supreme Court decision in Buckley vs. Vallejo,” and we call for “contribution limits for Political Action Committees (PACs) with less than 50 members to prevent wealthy people from using their funds to unduly influence elections.” We believe that these changes, combined with public campaign funding, will reduce money’s corrupting influence in Butte County politics.

Marybeth Wuerthner, Marilyn Ditmanson, Walter Ballin, Katie Freeman
Green Party of Butte County Council

Patriot Act protest
The Patriot Act is the most unpatriotic piece of legislation that has ever come from Washington, D.C.

It’s un-American for John Ashcroft and the FBI to have the power to conduct secret searches, jail us without charges and snoop into what we buy or borrow from the library. Yet this is what the Patriot Act gives the FBI the power to do.

I applaud the efforts in Congress to repeal the Patriot Act and stop any more laws that would undermine the basic civil liberties that make our country great.

Seren Bradshaw
Forest Ranch

The dream is over
My father once told me that if you worked hard and were smart with your money anyone in America could purchase a home for his or her family. That was the American dream. Now, the American dream seems to be just to get a job, any job.

This month the workers at Albertson’s and Vons are striking to keep the health care they were promised. And Wal-Mart is in trouble for hiring illegal aliens (mostly European) to clean their stores for $2 a day. Although corporate profits are at record highs, big-business greed is overwhelming the hope we Americans have for a good life.

So, what can we do about it? Life is full of choices. Even little things can make a big difference. When you see a picket line, don’t cross it. The next time you go to Wal-Mart and purchase that giant inflatable nutcracker (actual product), take a moment and think about what you are doing. Shouldn’t you value America more than the short buzz you get from purchasing bright shiny objects made by Chinese prison labor?

John D. Geiger

More praise for ‘Vig’
I am writing in response to the nice letter praising Mr. Bernie Vigallon’s work with the boys at Fair View High School ["Father figure,” Letters, Oct. 18]. I would like to comment that “Mr. Vig” not only helps boys, but girls as well. I can personally attest to this, being both female and a Fair View graduate. Thanks and keep up the good work, Vig!

Ariana K. Stafford

Chain reaction
Where are our nuclear arsenal, and who will inspect us, and while we are on short subjects, are those who are against abortion for war and if not why not and how can you tell me so?

Steve Walker

Civil disagreement
I agree with you about the war in Iraq is wearing on us [“Civil bore,” Inside view, Oct. 23]. Even with Hussein’s government all but gone, there seems to be little to celebrate. And where are all of those “weapons of mass destruction” that Rumsfeld and others hammered into our heads as being the very reason our troops were sent there in the first place? I do not support this current assignment that our troops have and would like to see a more global effort being applied.

That said, I have to make a point about Civil War re-enactments. The reason that the Civil War is so important, or should be, is that unlike many other combat situations where Americans were a united front against apposing forces, Americans were fighting, and killing, Americans. Fathers fought alongside and against sons, and brothers killed brothers. The ideals and beliefs of a great nation were so divided that only violence of the strongest magnitude would restore order.

We still feel the wounds of this historic and heroic battle 140 years later. It is our duty as Americans, through whatever civil means necessary, to never forget that our nation was for a short time two separate and equally different entities. It was by the blood of many courageous men that the two halves were made whole. The reenactments glorify nothing. They remind us that we are a free nation, freedom for all of those who dwell within, not just one group over another.

L. Hudson

No Rush
As soon as I sober up, I’ll write something about Red Ribbon week.

Stephen T. Davis

Early endorsement
The upcoming March midterm election calls for some hard choices. If politico Dan Ostrander decides to run for Assembly, I say dump the old liberal/conservative shtick and support Ostrander’s candidacy. Ostrander is a very effective personality, and when the dust settles he stands alone to take full responsibilities for his actions.

Sure he has his shortcomings, but who better to deal with all our groovy friends in Sacramento? As the man says, “We have no time to play politics when the world faces death.”

Guy B. Morey
Sonoma County