Wed. Aug 17th, 2022

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AG’s grandstanding
emboldens rent dodgers

Re. “AG issues warning on illegal evictions,” Page B1, July 14:

It’s disheartening, disappointing and disingenuous to see California’s Attorney General “grandstanding” on illegal evictions.

How many are there and how many have contacted his office? He refused to say except to allege there have been numerous. Even the lead council for Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment stated she only receives about one per month. Further, unless law enforcement is clueless and incompetent, they are well aware of the law.

The real reality is the numerous tenants illegally not paying rent with tacit governmental approval through regulations and the attorney general’s words and actions.

Killian Byrne
San Jose

Civic service should be
required of inmates

Once again I choked over my coffee when reading Mr. Roadshow (“Caltrans expands program to clean up litter from highways,” Page B1, July 13). The discussion was on the Caltrans program of cleaning up highway litter by inmates: California jail inmates are given the option of doing litter pickup and per Mr. Roadshow, “many do not want to do so.”

Community service such as cleaning our streets and highways should be a required program that inmates participate in, in addition to being offered an education and opportunity to learn a trade so that they have a better chance of making a living upon release. Perhaps they can have their sentences shortened with this community service (depending on the severity of their crime).

If inmates are able-bodied, then it would be a very good use of their time and our tax dollars to have this service of cleaning roads and highways performed by them.

Tina Morrill
San Jose

California, indeed,
has many freedoms

Re. “California arguably most unfree state in the union,” Page A7, July 15:

Victor Davis Hanson, who I believe earned a Ph.D. in negativity, rants once more about how few freedoms we Californians have. I am a retired high school and college teacher. In the Campbell Union High School District, I taught both opportunity class for at-risk students and physics for talented students: Our school system does indeed provide the freedom for excellent learning opportunities for all students.

I taught at Evergreen Valley College, which currently offers educational freedom to a student population that is 40% Hispanic and 38% Asian, many of whom are first-generation college students. Students can earn credits to transfer to UC and CSU, which are among the finest university systems in the nation.

Hanson is a California syndicated columnist with the freedom to espouse his vitriol in newspapers across the country.

I say to Hanson, take a little more time to ponder the freedoms you and many Californians do indeed have.

Steve Matusow
San Jose

It’s not the games;
it’s the guns

Re. “Video games are glamorizing violence,” Page A6, July 14:

Cindy Webenbauer seems to have taken her talking points straight out of the NRA playbook as she blames video games for the rise in violent men. The same violent video games available here are available in Canada, Japan and many other countries that don’t see the level of gun violence America has.

People were killing each other before video games and the culprit was always something in the media be it rock music, R-rated movies and so on. Webenbauer and others who blame media should realize that the violent video games here are available in other countries, but not AR-15s.

Sajeev Toprani
Los Altos Hills

Give publicly funded
elections a test run

Re. “We should fear even greater turmoil for the next six years,” Page A13:

Regarding David Brooks’ comment in his July 17 op-ed, “A majority of American voters believe our system of government does not work,” here’s a fine point: It’s not democracy that’s the problem; it’s the people running it.

Our democracy in America is based on an elegantly balanced input of executive, legislative and judicial branches. However, our system didn’t account for funding the election of its own officials, otherwise known as “the cost of doing business.” Private funding favors specific interests rather than overall good and exacerbated by the Citizens United ruling, makes elected officials the slaves/champions of their donors’ special interests.

Let’s run an experiment, shall we? Make elections publicly funded and see if elected officials will more fairly execute, legislate and adjudicate the needs of the country’s citizenry. Until private funding is out of the picture, they –and we – aren’t truly free.

Jill Zahner
Campbell

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