Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor 12/25

Help provide shelter

Thank you for your editorial, “Don’t forget others’ help for homeless” that ran on Dec. 2. One of those “others” is the Interfaith Coalition for the Homeless (ICH), an organization made up of twelve churches and Congregation Beth David.

Each month, on a rotating basis, a church or the synagogue provides overnight shelter for women, children and men who are part of family units, thus providing a safe, welcoming environment for them. It helps open beds at the Maxine Lewis Memorial Shelter on Orcutt Road to more single men.

Regretfully, even with the ICH venues and the shelter operating at full capacity, homeless persons must be frequently turned away for lack of a bed.

As the city and county look for ways to deal with this heartbreaking and seemingly intractable problem, you can help with only some of your time. Call the shelter at 541-6351, extension 812 for more information.

Bob Christenson

San Luis Obispo

Seniors and Santa

We at Home Instead Senior Care would like to thank The Tribune for getting the word out about our 6th annual “Be a Santa to a Senior” program. We’d also like to thank the LifeSteps Foundation Linkages Program as well as the Willshire Foundation Caring Callers Program and all the volunteers and shoppers who helped make our holiday community service program such a success.

Thanks to the generous donations and efforts of our community, many seniors in need who may have been overlooked have received a gift and companionship this holiday season. We were able to provide 480 gifts to 120 seniors this season.

Thanks to all those who helped us brighten the holidays for seniors in our community.

Tiffany Alcantara

President, Home Instead Senior Care

Big fun at carnival

Big Brothers Big Sisters of San Luis Obispo County would like to thank the generous members of our community who made our Holiday Carnival a joyous celebration for more than 300 children and volunteers. We are particularly grateful for the Vons Foundation and the Exchange Club of San Luis Obispo.

Trilogy Central Coast and Cal Poly Student Community Services fulfilled gift wishes for every child in attendance. A generous feast was made possible thanks to donations from Madonna Inn, the Chicano Correctional Workers, Costco, Starbucks, Marie Calendar’s and Utopia Bakery.

Volunteers from AmeriCorps, Cal Poly Line Dancing, Campus Crusade, Chi Omega, Derek Ostovani, Fort Hope, Lambda Chi Alpha, STRIDE, Student Teacher’s Association and Student Life and Leadership entertained guests.

A holiday celebration isn’t complete without a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, brought by volunteers from Cal Poly’s Delta Sigma Pi.

Our mission is to help the children of San Luis Obispo County reach their full potential through professionally supported one-to-one mentoring relationships. We couldn’t accomplish our mission without our dedicated, caring donors and volunteers.

Sarah Rudd-Lawlor

Program Director, Big Brothers Big Sisters of San Luis Obispo County

Bad choice of word

As I glanced at the paper on the first page, I noticed a leader to an inside story. It said “Sign swiped from Auschwitz” (Dec. 19). I felt something terribly wrong in the pit of my stomach. I had heard about this event the day before, so it wasn’t “new” to me. What really bothered me was The Tribune’s use of the word “swiped.”

The word “swiped” trivializes the theft of the most visual sign of horror of what happened to Jews and non-Jews alike.

This is a brazen act, the theft of a piece of metal that has symbolized a place of unfortunate history where millions were brutally denigrated, tortured and murdered. It now serves as a place where people from all over the world can come to try to heal and remember what brutality took place there.

For me, the word “swiped” doesn’t give this historic place on earth the respect that it, and we, deserve.

Jeff Eidelman

San Luis Obispo

Motley Morro crew

On a Saturday morning, bird watchers with binoculars and clipboards in hand are conducting a critical bird census.

Then comes the the crescendo, faint and distant, then loud, then louder, no not bird calls, but the barking of a certain German shepherd who was featured in my last letter to the editor, “Doggone barking dog” (Nov. 8).

A reliable source who witnessed this disruption has informed me there were not one, but three German shepherds in the SUV and the barkers ride with heads protruding out of the sunroof.

Not content with the birder disruption, the motley crew proceed on down the road terrorizing unsuspecting Morro Bay residents.

Mike Morgan

Los Osos

Let it begin with me

Some years ago, when my brother Fred was a protestant Christian pastor in Southern California, a Jewish rabbi came to him and asked if the Christians could share their house of worship with his congregation. They had no place to worship and could not build their own yet, and after all, they worshipped on Saturday.

Fred and his congregation said yes, so they found two closets to keep their worship materials in and what started out as simply a “marriage of convenience” became a warm and friendly relationship, shared services, pulpit exchanges and mutual respect.

A few years ago, a Muslim cleric came to Fred and asked him if he and his community could share their house of worship. They had no place to worship and could not yet build their own, and after all, they worshiped on Friday. After consulting with the Christian and Jewish congregations, they all said yes, so they found another closet and more mutual respect and more shared experiences resulted.

That house of worship and those people became the perfect example of a song we sing a lot at Christmas. “Let there be peace on Earth and let it begin with me.” Merry Christmas.

Sally Adam

San Luis Obispo

Aiding sea creatures

The staff and volunteers of The Marine Mammal Center’s San Luis Obispo Operations rescue and triage facility are grateful for the support we have received this year from the residents, visitors, rangers, law enforcement, harbor patrols and resource managers of our beautiful area of the Central Coast.

With your help, we have rescued 421 marine mammals in San Luis Obispo County so far in 2009 that were stranded due to illness, injury, entanglements, malnutrition or being orphaned.

If you called us about an animal in distress and waited until we could get there, thank you. If you helped us carry an animal off the beach, gave us a hand to lift a heavy carrier into our truck, handled crowd or traffic control or told us you’d been a supporter of The Marine Mammal Center for years, thank you for your caring, concern and generosity.

If you’d like to become more involved, we have an introduction meeting, classes and training beginning on Jan. 13. E-mail Lisahh@TMMC.org for details. You can learn more about our work at www.MarineMammalCenter.org.

Lisa Harper Henderson

Marine Mammal Center