Letters for June 4, 2009

Letter of the week
won … for now

Re “Split decision” by Kel Munger (SN&R Frontlines, May 28):

Hate won in [last week’s] California Supreme Court decision. Hate is a powerful emotion that rallies stupid people to do stupid things, even when those stupid people pretend to be learned legal scholars with judicial temperaments.

The Supremes took the bait of Ken Starr’s oral arguments that Californians may with legitimacy do profoundly unwise things through the ballot-initiative process, even if those unwise things bar equal protection under the law to a whole bunch of fellow citizens. Yes, we queers are citizens, too, like it or not, and despite the bigotry and fear and, frankly, the self loathing, of the very stupid people who brought Proposition 8 into being, the Supreme Court’s opinion in these cases merely amplified the hate quotient in California, if only temporarily. They were cowards, seeking refuge in their own careers by not alienating the ill-informed majority who manifested hate last November rather than daring to simply uphold the law and to pierce this issue as one of first review, which would set aside precedents involving the initiative process.

Prop. 8 should, on its face, have been set aside due to the conflicts raised between the initiative process and its broadside hit against equal protection. The current California Supreme Court should hang their heads in collective shame for opting for job protection over the civil equities afforded under our constitution and our laws. This fight is not over yet, especially given the rulings issued and laws enacted in a growing number of enlightened jurisdictions.

Alex Berg

Hell is an obsession

Re: “Hell is an intersection” by R.V. Scheide (SN&R Race to the Bottom, May 28):

Welcome to the neighborhood!

Since you just arrived, I thought I would pass on some helpful hints about the area where you have chosen to live.

First of all, Land Park Drive is not part of the Freeport/21st Street conversion intersection you obsess so much about. Land Park runs parallel to Freeport and is the downtown equivalent to 16th Street as Freeport is to 19th Street.

Second, this is a neighborhood of working families, elders, pets, birds and squirrels. We actively promote measures that support the well-being of our community children and elders. We don’t “engineer” things to indulge adolescent fantasies of speed racing on neighborhood and commuter routes.

Peter Kirkup

Delta shmelta

Re “Delta showdown” by Dan Bacher (SN&R Green Days, May 28):

It really disturbs me that Bill Jennings is quoted as some savior of the Delta fisheries. Mr. Jennings’ organization is in favor of saving non-native predatory fish (striped bass, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass—all introduced), and they are bigger consumers of the endangered fish than the pumping projects ever were. This is one of the biggest problems in the Delta! Instead, officials should shut the Delta Cross-Channel Gates and take the San Joaquin back to its natural flows, and then it would be recognized that the East Bay [Municipal Utility District], with its diversion and all the diversions on the San Joaquin, are some of the biggest problems and that should be addressed right now!

The best thing that could happen to the fisheries right now is to put in the isolated conveyance so there would be no fish at the pumps at all. But in order to accomplish that, the old propaganda needs to be relearned. In Northern California, the “their water” mentality has to be re-examined. The Delta will not turn into a salt marsh nor will it be turned into another Owens Valley! Those lies have to go. Then if we start looking at the facts and real solutions to the problems, we can start fixing the problems.

Michael Miller

Dawg, what’s next?

Re “Beyond driven!” by R.V. Scheide (SN&R Feature, May 21):

I am thrilled to see someone go after the ruling class in Sacramento. These people don’t give two hoots about the taxpayer or the taxpayer’s money.

Now that David Palmer is going after the Legislature, do you think he would help businesses go after CARB (California Air Resources Board)? CARB is as bad, if not worse. They have almost $2 billion of taxpayer money to waste, and all it is used for is to drive us out of our great state.

Thank you for the great article.

Frank Cook

Just legalize it

Re “Marijuana’s tipping point” by Phillip S. Smith (SN&R Frontlines, May 21):

Legalize it. Treat it like alcohol, plain and simple. I’m so sick of the “gateway drug” argument. Alcohol is the ultimate gateway drug. It’s probably 90 percent of people’s first buzz. And if they like it, they want more. None of my successful friends that smoke got into heavy drugs like coke. Once it’s legal, it will be exciting for the first three months. After that, the people who smoke now will probably smoke the same amount. And the people who won’t simply won’t. Not much will change. Kids will have as much access to it as a six-pack of beer. So legalize it. And to the folks that say “no” and that have never done it, what right do they have to judge it? The only reason that it’s bad for society is because there’s a black market that creates crime.

Responsible Adult

The terrible person I used to be

Re “Growing up J.W.” by Jenn Kistler and Kel Munger (SN&R Sacreligious!, May 7):

It was only when I became disfellowshipped that I realized what kind of terrible person I used to be. I was so judgmental of everyone around me, and I always felt like the odd one out.

I seriously feel great now. I accept people for who they are, and I can appreciate the fact that most of the people around me want just as much good for the world as I do—some even more. I can befriend gay people, who are very nice. I can be more social and understanding and tolerate other beliefs and ways of life. Even though I do not believe in any religion one bit, I am still very open-minded.

Of course, both my parents, all of my siblings, most of my cousins, aunts and uncles [still] go to church and cannot speak to me ever again because I have been shunned. So I have had to start a new life from scratch, looking for new friends and more accepting people. But things are looking up.

Luis Trujillo

Memorizing trash

Re “Big boys” by Patti Roberts (SN&R Stage Pick, April 30):

I walked out of this production Sunday along with half the audience. I am still trying to figure out what caused your reviewer to consider vulgar clichés and obscene one-liners to be “humorous.” The actors did a good job of memorizing this trash, but it is a sad commentary on what a talented actor has to submit to in order to work. As a longtime member of B Street [Theatre], I am terribly disappointed that Buck Busfield would consider this worthy of his time or our money to produce. This is not the work of an aspiring artist or a creative imagination. [Thumbs] down for this B Street production.

Jo Wragg


Re “Museum piece” by Greg Lucas (SN&R Frontlines, May 28):

Edwin and Margaret Crocker and their family actually toured Europe from 1869 to 1871. We apologize for getting the dates wrong in the original print version.