Cambrian: Opinion

Cambrian letters to the editor, Nov. 12, 2015

Halloween artistry a pumpkin pleasure

On Halloween, Scott, Susan, Meg Stern and three Coast Union High School friends (two of whom are foreign exchange students from two different Baltic states) decorated our driveway with their skillfully hand-carved pumpkins.

Since my wife, Rhoda, her mother, Cathie, and I moved to Cambria in 2002, our Stern family and friends have provided treats and their hand-carved pumpkins for us each Halloween. This has become a family tradition that delights more than 400 trick-or-treaters each year.

Rhoda and I especially appreciate our Sterns’ artistry and kindness. We look forward to Halloween 2016.

Claude and Rhoda Albanese, Cambria

Merchant Marines’ flagpole at hall

I just read Kathe Tanner’s column in today’s Tribune. Well done and thank you.

I understand the feelings of veterans who feel ignored. I am a veteran of the Korean War. I served there from Sept. 15, 1950 to Sept. 14, 1951. After my discharge in 1953, I stayed in the Army Reserve and the California Army National Guard for an additional 30 years.

I am surprised that you did not mention the memorial flagpole honoring the U.S. Merchant Marine in the Cambria Vets Hall parking lot. I know for sure that CDR Lou Fedora was involved. Lou served in the Merchant Marine and Navy during World War II. A follow-up article and photo would be truly appreciated by the Cambria Veterans of the Merchant Marine.

Alan S. Doctor, Cambria

Thanks from HART, local cats, kittens

Finding ways to raise money to pay the veterinary bills for our only local no-kill cat shelter, the Homeless Animal Rescue Team (HART), is a daunting task. For the first nine months of this year alone, the veterinary expenses paid for by the Guardian Angel fund, restricted for urgent and lifesaving care of HART cats and kittens, totaled almost $12,000. Without treatment many of these animals would be euthanized needlessly. To help raise these important funds, the HART Guardian Angel Committee recently held a Raffle called the “Cause for Paws.”

The raffle was a success because of the great support received. Thank you to The Cambrian for the help in getting the word out. And special thanks to the following artists, galleries, stores and individuals who donated 36 wonderful prizes :

Artifacts Gallery, Carol Jean Attoe, Glenn Bennett, Joanna Bobitt, Lana Cochrun, EarthSea Pottery, Foxlo Pottery, Gary Gall Ceramic Designs, Patricia Griffin Studio, Jenny Lee Jewelry, Judy Lyon, S.E.A. McNamara, Megg McNamee, St. Mary Mead, Dianne Norton, Greg and Teri Sanders, Judy Schuster, Shops at the Garden Shed, Sharon Sobraske, Darlene Shubert, Talley Farms, Therapy by the Sea, Patricia Willmott and Marilyn Zahm.

The cats and kittens of HART appreciate your ongoing support of the Guardian Angel Fund.

Bonnie Ahlstrom, chairperson, HART Guardian Angel Committee

White Cane Day most successful ever

On Friday, Oct. 23, the Lions Club of Cambria had our most successful White Cane Fundraising Day ever. We want to thank Cambria Drug and Gift, Heritage Oaks Bank, Rabobank, Cookie Crock Market, The U.S. Post Office and Farmers Market for allowing us to set up at their locations. We also wish to thank all the lions who volunteered and all Cambrians and visitors who donated to this worthy cause.

All the money raised stays in our local community. It allows the Lions Club to provide eye exams, eyeglasses and/or surgeries to any local who cannot afford them. It also provides the funds for our annual visit to the grammar and middle schools each December for free vision screenings.

The Lions Club also works with other groups by collecting eyeglasses from several optometrists. These eyeglasses are packed and shipped to countries all over the world. We have local collection boxes located at the Joslyn Center and Cambria Library.

Vision care is the priority of all Lions Clubs, and Cambria does its part, thanks to all of you.

Lanny Loveland, Chairman, White Cane Day

Debt, elections and CCSD questions

Thank you, John FitzRandolph, for giving voice to a list of things I don’t understand, either. Here’s another: I don’t understand how a portable, temporary emergency water facility costing $4 million turned into a permanent water plant costing $9 million that, by the time it was built, cost $13 million, without having to discuss the changes with the public. Doesn’t the public generally get to express opinions on spending huge amounts of money? Give a Yea or Nay? Or does the Community Services District Board just get to spend us into as much debt as it wants without the annoyance of public critics?

Why didn’t the CSD board invite either of the people who ran for office and finished just behind the winners to fill the empty seat? Back in 2011, when the board had an empty seat to fill by appointment, Valerie Bentz, who received only about 40 votes fewer than Jim Bahringer in the 2010 election, was the obvious person to appoint to the seat. Rather than choose her, someone who represented an important viewpoint, board members appointed Gail Robinette, whom they described as a “team player.”

Appointing a person who is widely distrusted and whose point of view is already held by a majority silences alternative viewpoints. If there’s no penalty for behaving undemocratically, why not appoint your friends and cronies? The thing I really don’t understand is why intelligent, well-educated Cambrians keep electing such poor leadership.

Christine Heinrichs, Cambria

Why downplay good, focus on negative?

I found the column by John FitzRandolph (“From no scarecrow is heard a discouraging word,” Oct. 5) negative and misleading. Instead of praising the community for the great work and reception by visitors, it downplayed the good and focused on the negative, even to the point of implying he was glad the tourists were gone. I don’t think the merchants would agree.

Then he was bashing the Republican debate from a very biased viewpoint. This was not the forum for his negative point of view and should have been a separate column. Most of my friends agree this “debate” was very biased with the questions presented and was a waste of time, but out of place in this article. It should have been a separate article.

I feel in the future this type of article should be better monitored by the Cambrian. I support no political party and would prefer unbiased reporting with a proper heading to any article with a particular agenda.

Donald M. Lagrand, Cambria