Letters to the editor 01-26-2012

Readers sound off on Sacramento parking, charter schools, NDAA and the 2012 presidential field

Already paid

Re “Park and play” by Cosmo Garvin (SN&R Feature, January 12):

I agree with your article and its assertion that a public vote is needed on the new Kings arena in downtown Sacramento.

I heard while listening to KCBS Radio AM 740 (San Francisco) that a court has ruled that the city attorney was correct in making the decision that no public vote was necessary on the authority of the Santa Clara City Council’s decision to build a football stadium in their city. I personally believe that this decision was all wrong as far as soaking citizens for fees and funding to benefit a professional team’s owners, well-heeled members of our society and political junkies, when the average taxpaying citizen has no say in the issue as well as a very slim chance of seeing just one game each year. …

And what does the taxpaying citizen/fan do who has already paid for the stadium and then gives up city parking dollars to the professional team? You guessed it, buy a cable TV broadcast of his/her favorite team’s games. …

I say: Let those owning the team, those playing the game and those seeing the games pay. Let these greedy owners, pompous players and high-rolling fans adjust their ownership fees, player salaries and luxury-box prices on what a private facility will rightfully earn for itself.

Bill Johnson
via email

Ravitch doesn’t get it

Re “Teachers, Superman and the ‘anti-Michelle Rhee’” by Cosmo Garvin (SN&R Frontlines, January 19):

This is the typical rhetoric of a mainstream individual who has no real understanding of (or perhaps care for) the reality that faces inner-city families. The notion that poverty is the problem … is an excuse to leave low-income children and children of color behind.

There are plenty of schools, charter and non-charter, that have proven that you can achieve amazing results with these very same children. What Diane Ravitch is actually saying is poor kids can’t learn and aren’t worth the effort.

Aisha Toney
Rancho Cordova

Ravitch’s voice of reason

Re “Teachers, Superman and the ‘anti-Michelle Rhee’” by Cosmo Garvin (SN&R Frontlines, January 19):

It’s a relief that there are still voices of reason and sensibility in education.

As a veteran educator, I agree with Diane Ravitch’s views/answers in this SN&R interview, and put me on the “anti-Michelle Rhee” list. Ms. Rhee spouts clichés and buzz words, all with very little substance. With her minimal three-year teaching experience, and with an infamous claim to fame for [once] taping children’s mouths shut, she scarcely has the teaching knowledge/experience/expertise of which she brags. Unfortunately, she has brashness, boldness, and desire for notoriety and the media is attracted to women who speak out (i.e., Sarah Palin) regardless of credentials.

Wanda Au

Blair bewitched again

Re “One to grow on” by Rachel Leibrock (SN&R Arts&Culture, January 19):

Pot wife? What the? I don’t think this chick even knows what she is doing.

Part of being a farmer is tending to your crop, harvesting it and getting it ready for sale. I have been in the biz for 10 years and have never been referred to as a “pot wife.” A “pot head,” yes, but not a “pot wife.”

I have to look after my house and our child, but that’s part of life. If you think this book is what pot culture is about, then you have been duped by this chick again. She fooled you in The Blair Witch Project, and she will fool you again in this unrealistic book.

What a dope. Smoke some more of that pretendica you have been growing, and go back to Hollywood.

Renee Ammer
Fair Oaks


Re “Back to the future” and “Cheap and easy” by Rachel Leibrock (SN&R Popsmart, January 12 and 19):

While I can appreciate your feelings about the field of Republican presidential candidates, Rachel, I’m just not buying your thesis.

Let me get this straight: After losing, or almost losing your home (I’m not clear whatever happened there), you have now, 10 months before the election, already decided to vote for someone who not only enabled that very foreclosure process that seized a huge number of homes nationwide, but has lied as thoroughly and consistently as his predecessor, and for the same reason: He works for the 1 percent. You didn’t really elect him as president in 2008, he was chosen earlier by people with far more power than you or me.

Let me ask you a question: Are you aware that there was another black candidate on your 2008 presidential ballot, a woman? With (by your own standards, I’d wager) a superior voting record in Congress to that of Mr. [Barack] Obama, and more experience to boot? I’m speaking of Cynthia McKinney. Why didn’t you vote for her? …

The truth is that we will never get positive democratic change in this country until we stop voting for the lesser of two preselected evils and start voting with our hearts, minds, and courage.

Rio T. Lambie
via email

Don’t worry about a thing—except this

Re “Contradiction alert” (SN&R Editorial, January 12):

I have to disagree with you about the new National Defense Authority Act of 2012, with its already infamous Subtitle D (“Detainee Matters”), a provision for the indefinite detention by the military of anyone suspected to have “substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban or associated forces.”

Subtitle D is very explicit, and it doesn’t include me, anyone working along with SN&R, or for that matter any of SN&R’s 80,000-plus readers.

Just like the Patriot Act, which caused all sorts of apprehension, but nothing came of it; the National Defense Authority Act is a security measure to make the nation safer from true terrorists, not you and me.

If you want to worry about something really scary, worry about a tea party Republican becoming the next president.

Ron Lowe
Nevada City


In “The big squeeze” by Seth Sandronsky (SN&R Frontlines, January 19), a story about banks surcharging poor Californians, we mentioned Assembly Bill 756, a measure that would have waived EBT fees for CalWORKs recipients. We apologize to this bill’s author, Assemblywoman Holly Mitchell, D-Los Angeles, for getting her last name wrong.