Their oaths set aside
It’s worth a few minutes to look up the oaths of office taken by our senators and representatives. They swear to defend our Constitution and take the oath “without any purpose of evasion.” But listening to Mitch McConnell and John Boehner and many of their fellow Republicans, it seems that oath has been set aside.
Their main goal is to oust the current president, and they say this over and over! Their purpose for showing up in Washington, D.C., as our tax-supported representatives has nothing to do with defending and protecting our Constitution. As a matter of fact, they act as obstructionists when any legislation which might benefit our nation is proposed. They are determined that nothing will be done which might show President Barack Obama in a positive light.
Very little can be accomplished, and the moderate reasonable members of Congress are very discouraged.
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How do we start impeachment proceedings? These hate-filled impostors must be brought to justice.
Arnold not endorsed
Several residents of the 5th District have asked us about a misleading robo-call referring to the Sierra Club that they have received from the Debbie Arnold campaign. We wish to clarify any confusion, which this call seems to have been designed to create.
Debbie Arnold has not been endorsed by the Sierra Club, nor do we consider her possible election to the Board of Supervisors to be in any way preferable to the re-election of Jim Patterson. We do not believe Ms. Arnold understands or agrees with the principles of responsible land-use planning.
The donations received by her campaign mark her as a tool of development interests, and we have no doubt that she would serve as an automatic vote in favor of projects designed for maximum profit and minimum regard for their impacts on resources, neighborhoods or public health.
Her campaign’s attempt to paint Ms. Arnold “green” is akin to a porcupine posing as the Velveteen Rabbit.
Chair, Santa Lucia Chapter of the Sierra Club
Nipomo watched costs
Congratulations to those in the Nipomo region who voted against the proposed Santa Maria pipeline tax. You are paying for a water source that will serve future customers. Forced development originates from the extraneous California Department of Housing and Development, which sets guidelines for counties and cities. The local populace has better knowledge of possible development needs.
This department was created in response to lobbyists representing contractors and developers. There is subservient local cooperation with the state because more development also generates more tax dollars for counties and cities.
Future developers and customers should pay higher tier fees/taxes for hookup and consumption. Also, did the pipeline concept have the lowest life-cycle cost? Or are there other alternatives, such as recycling and storage basins, which should be independently reviewed to determine the lowest life-cycle cost? Various water companies in the area? One water source provider will aid in minimizing the life-cycle cost and per-customer cost by spreading consolidated overhead costs over the entire region.
The article “Collective effort brings back bones to SLO County” (May 12) is certainly politically correct, but is sadly lacking in historical accuracy. Some basic investigation could have clarified mistaken notions about the disposition of Native American remains in the 19th and early 20th centuries as well as the pioneering archaeological and ethnological efforts by a local couple.
R.W. Summers — the so-called grave robber (not all bones were in graves) — was an Episcopal priest and the first city librarian, and with his wife he saved — not stole — artifacts from extinction in Oregon, California and the San Luis Obispo area. Their motivation was scientific, not horrific, as they received little income for extensive investigations. Given the lack of local depositories or interest in preserving these treasures, many were sent elsewhere. If not, there would be few to repatriate.
History is much too important to ignore, let alone misrepresent. For their efforts to discover and recover (hopefully, accurately) their past, a bouquet to the Salinan Tribe.
San Luis Obispo
More to the story
A recent article on the repatriation of Indian remains to the Central Coast (“Collective effort brings back bones to SLO County,” May 12) mentioned “a man named R.W. Summers” who allegedly “scavenged” the bones from the San Luis Obispo area in the 19th century. There is much more to this story.
Robert William Summers, a native of Kentucky, was the first Episcopal priest for Seattle, Wash. While in the Pacific Northwest in the 1870s, Summers and his wife, Lucia, developed a deep interest in American Indian culture and were avid collectors of Indian artifacts.
In 1881, the Summers’ came to San Luis Obispo, where he served as rector of St. Stephen’s Church until 1884. Later, he was the original librarian for the subscription library housed in the Andrews Bank building at the corner of Osos and Monterey streets.
According to the British Museum website, Summers acquired Indian objects throughout California and intended to start a museum in San Luis Obispo. However, he could not find a suitable building to store his collection and was forced to sell it. The buyer then donated it to the British Museum.
R.W. Summers died in San Luis Obispo on July 5, 1898, aged 70 years. All accounts of his life agree that he was completely respectful of Indian culture, at least by 19th-century standards.
A stellar ensemble
On May 12, I was privileged to sing in the Cuesta Master Chorale’s performance of Bach’s “St. Matthew Passion” at the Performing Arts Center. Director Dr. Thomas Davies assembled a stellar ensemble of double chorus, orchestra and six fine soloists to present this passionate rendition of Bach’s masterwork. Tenor Christopher Cock, familiar to SLO Symphony audiences from his recent performance of Britten’s “Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings” was joined by five other outstanding soloists from Southern California, Chicago and San Luis Obispo to bring the story of the Passion alive for an enthusiastic audience.
The double chamber orchestras led by concertmasters Paul Severtson and Brynn Albanese featured many woodwind and string players in an interweaving of sublime musical interpretation during the soloists’ arias and recitatives.
The Master Chorale chorus of 51 singers opened and closed the work with massive choral selections and reunited several times throughout the almost three hours of glorious music.
San Luis Obispo is fortunate to have a rich tradition of choral music represented by outstanding community ensembles such as the Vocal Arts Ensemble, Cuesta Master Chorale, Canzona Women’s Ensemble, Central Coast Children’s Choir, Les Chanteuse, Opera SLO and Festival Mozaic. We also enjoy the excellent ensembles from Cuesta College and Cal Poly, including everything from vocal jazz to the Renaissance and beyond. These ensembles bring together some of the finest musicians in our community throughout the year at wonderful venues, and I am grateful for their gift of singing.
San Luis Obispo
Don’t attack APCD
As I sit in my living room looking out the window today, May 23, watching the dust from the Ocean Dunes obscure my vision of the trees behind my house, I am reminded about how important the Air Pollution Control District board and its director, Larry Allen, are to our county. Because of the APCD, I know I should not be out gardening in this PM10 cloud. I know that if the pollution gets worse, I can plan accordingly. And I know that my government is concerned about my health and welfare and is doing something about it.
Larry Allen is a gentleman and a hardworking public servant. His APCD staff is conscientious, experienced and professional. The APCD mission to protect the county’s air quality should be valued by every resident who wants to breathe air that meets standards set to protect our health.
The ongoing attack on this agency is inaccurate, mean-spirited and promulgated by people with a personal agenda. Enough, already.