Letters to the Editor for Oct 16, 2003
Thursday, October 16, 2003
At a presentation at the Monterey Institute of International Studies on Oct. 8, we learned that each day 24,000 people throughout the world, 18,000 of them children, die for lack of food, despite the fact there is enough food produced to feed everyone.
The people of our country were rightly horrified at the loss of life of three thousand people on 9/11, yet this number of deaths pales in comparison to the tragedy of deaths by starvation. Many Americans asked, at the horror of 9/11: "Why would people hate us to do such a thing?" This question was not pursued; instead, we went to war, killing thousands of people in Afghanistan and Iraq, and leaving untouched the terrorist training schools in Saudi Arabia, the country from which the suicide bombers of 9/11 came.
We invaded Iraq because of their weapons of mass destruction, yet spend billions developing such weapons ourselves. It is so strange we use so much of our advanced technology to find better ways to kill people, and deprive our own people of education, health care, and housing because we prefer to spend $300 billion annually on the military.
With war, we bring injury and death to thousands of people, and destruction to the fragile planet we live on, with the possibility of leaving it uninhabitable for future generations. I think if we spent as much money and directed just as much effort to stop hunger and violence as we do to wage war, we just might find ourselves without enemies.
Marjorie Atkinson | Salinas
Arnold: No Means No
I looked it up to make sure: misogynist--one who hates women. I do not believe that the governor-elect's grabbing women by their privates at will is driven by boyish prank-making or movie set wildness fired by excessive testosterone. I do believe that Arnold is that modern day barbarian who harbors a deep-seated hatred of women. His wanton invasion of a woman's person makes a strong case for subliminal rage. His crimes against non-consensual victims involve abuse of two powers; his star status to attract, and his physical strength in some instances to restrain and prevent women from escaping his molesting. He may be the governor-elect of a state, but he cannot govern his own bile. A pathological imbalance does not give the perpetrator license. Heavy duty therapy for him and his family should center on denial.
Robert Downey | Pacific Grove
Is That a Gun in Your Pocket?
If Captain Courageous, the person who wants to declare war on the unarmed but is afraid to give his name ["I Declare War on You," Oct. 9-15], wants to have some firearm toys to use as a penis replacement and is complying with the law, I have no problem with that. He/she should have no illusions they are safeguarding us from foreign attack however. Perhaps the anonymous one forgets that the most devastating attack carried out on this country was done with box cutters. Fraidy Cat should also be careful about who he assumes is unarmed. Not everyone on the left is a pacifist.
The core difference between those of us on the left and those of us on the right is illustrated quite well in the underlying barbaric tone of the unknown one's letter. In the perfect world of those who spend their time stocking up on rice and beans, the operating system is "I got mine and hell with you," while the civilized left realizes that no one wins unless we all win, and therefore works to create a society to uplift us all, as well as ensuring those too weak to take care of themselves are not ignored and left hungry and desperate.
Captain Courageous may have been afraid to give his name because he senses there are evildoers out there who want to take what is his. In a world where we realize we are all in the same boat, he wouldn't have to spend so much of his time cowering and afraid (ever been to Canada?). Perhaps someday we'll have a society where people can express their opinions without the fear evidenced in the letter of the unknown comic, until then though, rice farmers and gun dealers will be one of the few to profit.
David Stanley | Monterey
Sunny is Money
Congratulations on the article about the Northern California Solar Energy Association ["Here Comes the Sun," Oct 2-8]. Thanks is also due to the solar homeowners, for graciously opening their homes and enthusiastically sharing their experiences with the many people who took the tour, and more importantly for going solar, a positive step to reduce pollution, prevent global warming, solve our electricity crisis, lower our fossil fuel dependence, and increase our energy security.
Many think solar-powered homes only work away from the coast. Houses in Pebble Beach, Pacific Grove and Monterey demonstrate that solar energy is practical even with our fog. These homes show solar is cost-effective today and so seamless to the owner that their principal task (and joy) is watching the meter spin backwards as they build credit with PG&E.
As long-time residents of the Monterey Peninsula, we believe that using sustainable energy will go a long way to enhancing the environment--globally as well as locally. It's really not the economy or the environment.
Solar makes economic sense, with the utility savings more than paying the cost of the systems. Local governments have taken steps to help solar. The city of Monterey eliminated Design Review Fees for solar energy, and the county revised the fee structure for solar. Santa Cruz County is even more solar-friendly, with permits for solar systems available over the counter with no delay, and very reasonable permit fees.
There is more to be done, and we encourage citizens interested in solar to contact their city councilmembers or supervisors and encourage them to adopt solar-friendly policies and to install electricity-producing solar on municipal facilities.
Anyone with questions can contact email@example.com or 333-1919. Again, kudos to Coast Weekly for consistently highlighting issues of importance to the future of our communities.
Antony Tersol | Pacific Grove
Stan Semmel | Carmel Valley