Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor 1/17

A de-light-ful event

The fifth annual Morro Heights Luminary event was a big success. On Sunday evening, Dec. 13, we had about 6,500 luminaries lining our streets, creating a magical holiday scene. There were countless Morro Heights neighbors who helped to make this happen, but there were also some very wonderful people outside our neighborhood who were so generous with their time and materials.

Chad Rocha and Don Domenghini at Hanson Aggregates and Gary Dupree at Smart and Final all helped us with our supplies. Five delightful local students helped place and light the bags — Christina, Shannon, Taylor, Michael and Elijah. Lexi Williams and Candice Lusk spent the day driving these students around the neighborhood.

Without the sage advice of our local meteorologist, John Lindsey, this event wouldn’t have happened. Many thanks to everyone who helped to make this such a success.

Hope to see you walking or driving our neighborhood during next year’s event.

Dianne Weatherford

Chairperson, Morro Heights Holiday Luminaries

An energy resolution

My old truck turned over 200,000 miles this week. For a 1990 GMC that averages 10,000 miles a year, indeed a testament to technology.

But it made me think about where we Americans are and what needs to change.

A decade into the 21st century, almost five percent of the world’s people live in the U.S., but we consume 25 percent of all energy. The residents of California guzzle more gasoline than any country except the U.S. That is more than Japan, a country with three and a half times California’s people. Something seems wrong here.

Can we free ourselves from this insatiable addiction and particularly that liquid gold we use for fuel?

There is a Chinese proverb that says a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

My New Year’s resolution will be to use as little energy as possible while still being able to maintain a reasonable lifestyle. My New Year’s wish is that by the end of the next decade, 2020, a majority of Americans will feel the same and join me.

Mike Broadhurst


Corporate beef lackey

Last fall, Harris Ranch Beef Company forced Cal Poly to add speakers with opposing (read: Harris Ranch’s) views at a talk by author Michael Pollan by threatening to withdraw the $500,000 donation it had already promised (“Lecture plans shift in response to criticism,” Oct. 15).

Harris Ranch also demanded that Cal Poly remove a professor from teaching a course because his agricultural views run counter to the ranch’s, and that professor has “voluntarily” stepped down from the course he helped create and teach for many years (“Meat firm’s multiple beefs with Poly,” Jan. 10).

One can understand that a business wishes to protect what it considers its interests, but Harris Ranch’s actions don’t just undermine the movement toward sustainable agriculture — they threaten the foundation of American education and its freedom from outside interference.

It is time for Cal Poly to decide how much it values the principle of freedom and for the public to tell Harris Ranch that it won’t see education become the lackey of big business the way Congress has.

Bob Garrett

Arroyo Grande

We voted for change

I am writing this letter to express my deep displeasure with the Democratic Party’s unwillingness to put forward a single-payer health care bill modeled after Medicare, reduce the absurd military budget and pass meaningful financial regulation of Wall Street and the banking industry. I have supported progressive Democratic candidates for more than 40 years, and in 2008, I, like many others, voted to change the fascist policies of the corrupt Bush and Cheney administration.

After winning an overwhelming Democratic majority in both houses of Congress and the presidency, 40 reactionary Republican senators control all aspects of the political process. Why?

Obviously, the progressive wing of the Democratic party has the 50 votes necessary to pass its legislative agenda by the reconciliation procedure. If the leadership of the Democratic party cannot discipline the Joe Lieberman, Max Baucus, blue dog faction of their party, I refuse to support them.

The farce of letting insurance company lobbyists write health care policy, war profiteers set national defense policy and multi-millionaire Wall Street bankers dictate financial policy has to stop.

We voted for change, we won the election and we demand change!

James Quinn

San Luis Obispo