Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor 5/3

Change in 2012

Let’s summarize President Barack Obama’s presidential accomplishments thus far. He successfully became America’s first African-American president, despite doubts about his American citizenship. His goal is the redistribution of wealth from the upper class to the middle and lower classes, and if Obamacare and his tax plans are implemented as written, he will surely achieve it.

Though critical of George Bush’s war efforts, Obama co-opted Afghanistan for his own political purposes, with arguably poorer results. Obama insults our allies, apologizes and bows to our enemies and has bargained away a third of our nuclear arsenal. All this makes us weaker, not stronger, in the face of our enemies.

Amid rosy estimates of economic recovery, it looks like unemployment will remain at record levels for years. Meanwhile, Democrats are spending trillions more than Bush ever did, with apparently no concern for the rampant inflation this will most surely cause.

As a result of all this, Obama’s approval numbers are falling fast. If this keeps up, I can’t help but think the American people in November and in 2012 will want some change. Hopefully, we can come up with better leaders and strategies than we have now.

Clay Watkins

Arroyo Grande

Support athletes

I recently read with interest the article about the lack of local basketball athletes at Cuesta College (“SLO County’s game drain,” April 25). At the same time, I had to search for the results for the Cuesta College track and field athletes that qualified for the WSC Conference Championships.

I thought it was relevant to write in because we had 20 athletes qualify for the finals, 13 of them from local schools.

In addition, we host the largest track meet in the area at our facility each spring. This meet is a great way for the local athletes to enjoy Cuesta College’s first-rate track and field facility and be recruited by our coaches.

And guess where Jordan Hasay trained all through high school? Yes, at Cuesta College’s track and field facility.

My point is that we are in track season. Let’s continue to have lots of coverage of the local athletes who are continuing and excelling in their athletic careers at Cuesta College.

In this tough economic time for state schools, we are building our programs and helping student athletes compete at the community college level, as well as transfer on and compete at the university level. Way to go, Cougars!

Jani Johnson

Head coach, Cuesta College Track and Field

Lenthall for sheriff

I am a former Los Angeles County deputy sheriff, attorney and retired San Luis Obispo Superior Court judge. I have been involved in law enforcement matters my entire adult life. Throughout my career, I interacted with numerous law enforcement officers and recognized and appreciated those who had exceptional competency and integrity.

Jerry Lenthall consistently stood out as an extremely professional police officer who demonstrated the highest ethical standards. I continued to observe him as a county supervisor and found him to be both well prepared and honorable in fulfilling his duties. Lenthall is clearly the best candidate to lead our Sheriff’s Department.

Please join me and vote Jerry Lenthall for sheriff.

Richard C. Kirkpatrick

Pismo Beach

Endorsing Yates

I am writing this letter to announce my support for Bill Yates for mayor of Morro Bay.

Morro Bay is in desperate straits. There are far too many empty store fronts. Tax revenues are down. Services are being cut, and the city’s budget is on life support. The first priorities of the next city council should be to bring jobs and businesses back into Morro Bay.

Yates’ previous experience as mayor will give him the ability to take charge from day one. He has proven himself to be fiscally conservative with the knowledge to help Morro Bay through some very difficult times. Morro Bay needs leadership.

Please join me in voting for Bill Yates for mayor.

Stan House

Morro Bay

Legalize marijuana

What a waste of law enforcement resources. While burglaries and rapes go unsolved, nine agencies converge on a pot festival (“Local Update,” April 21). Talk about easy targets; it’s almost comical. Except those people really got arrested for felonies, a crime against the peace and dignity of the people of California. After clogging our courts, if those arrested are first-time offenders, they will plead down to a misdemeanor and get drug diversion. But if they miss their classes, can’t pay the fees or fail a drug test, then they will go to prison. So many man-hours wasted and futures affected. For what? Pot is a benign drug and safer than alcohol.

Why is it a felony to sell pot but an infraction to use it? What purpose does that serve but to create criminals? And was there any violent mayhem? Did anyone run? Did they even act disrespectfully while being handcuffed? Or did a bunch of folks get together and try to enjoy their day while bringing attention to the double standards and circular logic that is this war on cannabis?

We must fight disenfranchisement and use this to further motivate us to ensure marijuana is legalized this November.

Scott Ziering

Paso Robles

A little history

Jackson L. Forney calls W.R. Cole’s solution for Middle East peace a “freakishly glib notion” (“Glib nonsense,” April 21).

Further, he recommends that Cole read up on the history of the region. Forney should be so lucky to be as erudite, sagacious and well informed as Cole.

To illustrate history for Forney — and the naive masses — let me propose the following scenario: Since the United States was largely usurped from the Native Americans, how would Forney react (in relation to the Palestinians) if the United Nations decided to return “his” country to the original owners?

Now let us suppose that the Native Americans, aided by the mighty Brits, succeeded in marginalizing the occupying population into a barren corner (how about Death Valley?). Would Forney and all the Israeli sympathizers applaud or would they take up arms? Think about it, Forney, this is exactly the history of Palestine.

Of course, since we are the mighty “Brits,” we hear only one side of the story. And for those who claim that God willed Israel to the Jews, let me state very emphatically that God is not in the real estate business.

Joseph Codispoti

Paso Robles

Shortsighted cuts

It really is a shame that the Paso Robles School District is reducing school bus service (“Student programs get slashed,” April 16). I realize they need to cut the budget, but this cut is very shortsighted.

Many parents whose children ride the bus will now drive their children to school. This will lead to increased traffic, wear and tear on roads, air pollution, etc. How much money will these parents spend on gasoline to transport their children in private vehicles?

How about analyzing that cost and charging a fee to ride the bus? The cost of transporting students to school in a large bus has to be less than the cost of each parent driving their own child to and from school. If it cost $1 a day to ride the bus or $2 to use private vehicles, which would you chose? And it would also be good for the environment.

Chris Black

San Luis Obispo

Thanks from scouts

Templeton Boy Scout Troop 434 would like to thank Applebee’s restaurant in Paso Robles and all the people who purchased tickets for our benefit.

On Feb. 27, Applebee’s sponsored a pancake breakfast to benefit Troop 434 for the Scouts Summer Camp. The Scouts sold tickets to many people who attended the breakfast.

Applebee’s General Manager Derek Williams and Perry the cook showed up on their own time to cook and assist us with this benefit. The Scouts worked as waiters, servers and busboys, which exposed them to a great work experience.

Thanks again to Applebee’s and all who attended for your time and generosity. It truly is a privilege to live in North County.

Monica Swift

Templeton Troop 434

Pigs provoked?

A recent article said that wild pigs are releasing sediment into the creek, which is a habitat for steelhead trout (“Pigs pose a problem for hikers and steelhead trout,” April 5). Cows on that trail graze right above the creek and kick up soil, defecate and urinate. All of that runs down into the creek. I do not see the state Department of Fish and Game running out and slaughtering cows to protect the trout.

I don’t believe for a second that the pigs charged the lady unprovoked. Why wasn’t her name in the newspaper, and why wasn’t she quoted? How would she surprise a group of wild pigs when it’s in a wide-open space and you can see for miles?

What most likely happened is that she had her dogs off-leash like she is not supposed to, and they charged the pigs. Your article confirms this, quoting “the woman’s dogs chased the pig off.” How can they chase them if they are on a leash?

Pigs do not charge people unless they are provoked. I saw them about 100 feet away on someone else’s property. When they saw me, they turned and ran in the other direction. Point proven.

Kim Miller

San Luis Obispo