Letters for December 12, 2002

All-terrain Jesus

Re “Jesus—A Driving Force?” (SN&R Editorial, December 5):

Jesus walked.

I think the more relevant question (tongue in cheek): Would Jesus have accepted the Nike shoe sponsorship contract?

Thomas Barbiero

Slow down the imports

Re “Gun Down Illegal Immigrants” and “Not All Immigrants Are Foreigners” (SN&R Letters, November 27):

It’s time that our politicians listened to the public. Poll after poll indicates that a large majority of U.S. citizens are opposed to the present million-plus legal immigrants who fuel our U.S. population explosion every year, a far bigger number than the illegals.

Campbell’s suggestion to shoot down all those trying to cross the border does not merit discussion. And Huang’s protest about people moving to California from other states is a feeble cover-up from a typical pro-immigrant source that claims all attempts to limit immigration numbers are racially motivated.

Not true; it’s the huge numbers that matter, whatever their origins may be. Intrastate movement is not and should not be regulated; importing from foreign countries is an entirely different situation.

Of the million who arrive in the United States every year, about one-third end up in California! This means building a new city the size of Sacramento every single year, with all its needs for water, schools, housing, crime-fighting etc.

Reduce our overall immigration numbers—which Congress can do by simple new legislation—and we will have some time to catch up on the endless demands of new numbers.

Allen Jamieson

Wait, we’re a nation of imports

Re “Gun Down Illegal Immigrants” (SN&R Letters, November 27):

In response to the writer’s opinion that the United States should model Soviet-controlled East Germany by putting up guard towers so that “anyone in the ‘no man’s land’ area would be shot. No questions asked,” I’d like to say that many people do not share her view.

Any person who cheered the Berlin Wall coming down in that insincere American way of “ooh, another country coming to our style of democracy” was cheering for the demolition of the guard towers and the values they were built upon.

If you are a patriotic, flag-decal toting, “I don’t have a clue why Muslim extremists attacked us,” bombing advocate, go U.S.A. person, then logically you cannot support a military solution to keeping immigrants out because patriotism claims to be a belief in American democracy and human rights.

I wonder if the writer noticed the memorial graves around the Berlin Wall strip? Or the Checkpoint Charlie museum, where citizens from across the globe ogle how many were shot and how young they were, or how people were trying to join their relatives or escape being trapped by political circumstances?

It is obviously up to the government to determine immigration quotas that our country and California can sustain. And let’s not forget that anyone who is not Native American is an immigrant. We are a nation of immigrants.

Nova Reeves
via e-mail

Casual cavers we ain’t

Re “The Secret Lives of Bats” by Jeff Kearns (SN&R Cover, November 21):

Thank you for a comprehensive, informative article on bats and bat conservation.

However, in the article, it is asserted that cavers endanger bats. A distinction needs to be made between casual cave or mine visitors and organized cavers who are affiliated with organizations such as the National Speleological Society or the Cave Research Foundation.

Organized cavers, individually and as a group, are aware of bats and the sensitivity of their habitats. We stay out of caves that house bat colonies. Cavers work with cave landowners and public agencies to install and maintain bat-friendly gates in cave entrances and to post warning signs to protect bats from intrusion. We also contribute monetarily to Bat Conservation International and other such groups and strive to educate ourselves and the general public about bat conservation.

People do enter caves and mines that are sensitive bat habitats, sometimes resulting in the disturbance and death of bats. But they are not organized cavers. Please do not paint all of us with the same brush.

Heather McDonald
Chair, Mother Lode Grotto

National Speleological Society

What a way to live!

Re “It’s About Lifestyle” by Tara Taylor (SN&R News, November 21):

I really enjoyed the article. I’m a Sacramento college student who fell into the desire of working on the mountain this winter. I just started working at Boreal Ski Resort and can’t wait for the season to swing into full force.

A friend and I got the idea at American River College’s job fair and took the drive up to Boreal to their job fair, where we were hired right there. Then, it just became a matter of when the first storm would hit. So, now every weekend, we drive up to the mountain and stay with a co-worker who is renting us out a room for only $10 a night. What a relief because we weren’t sure where we would be able to stay. So, now I live about 500 feet from the resort on weekends, and, when school is out for vacation, I’ll be up there full time.

This is an excellent experience for anyone who skis or, like me, snowboards and wants a fun job, where they get a free trip up the lift. Working at Boreal was a great choice, and it’s great to work with people who all have the same goals for the winter: to ski or snowboard as much as possible.

It’s definitely a totally different lifestyle. Everyone is laid back and just looking to enjoy themselves. So, anyone who loves the slopes and wants to work a little on the side should look into a winter on the mountain. It’s great.

Johanna Leslie

We’re used to extremes

Re “Clinton Live!” (SN&R Capital Bites, November 21):

First of all, I look forward to your column every week. It is the heart of the entire paper. But why is it so hard to “make sense of Clinton”? He is a middle-of-the-road person, neither right nor left.

The state of U.S. politics is like windshield wipers, rushing from one extreme to the other. We have become so used to extreme politicians, we think that it’s good. But history tells us that is not true.

Unfortunately, a reasonable middle-of-the-roader has no chance in U.S. politics.

Again, thanks for your good work; please keep at it.

Jay Averill
via e-mail

Blame the fat-headed parents

Re “The Junk-Food Wars” by Melinda Welsh (SN&R Cover, November 14):

It is absolutely astounding how an entire nation can totally misdiagnose the country’s No. 1 ailment, obesity.

We have become a culture that demands instant gratification and convenience. Fast-food giants like McDonald’s and Wendy’s did not create themselves. We created them. It is as simple as the most fundamental business formula, supply and demand.

I have read in every newspaper how the food they serve is fattening, with poor nutritional value. And, if that is the case, why eat there?

Parents need to start pointing the finger at themselves. They blame all the marketing the fast-food companies do and how their kids are being brainwashed. Is it the kids who are driving Mom and Dad’s car through the drive-thru? Is it the kids driving the parents to McDonald’s after baseball practice? Is it the kids who pick up a pizza instead of cooking supper? No.

And, if you do eat there, anything in moderation is fine. We make ourselves fat, not these restaurants.

Pierre Sabourin
via e-mail