Letters to the Editor

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The supporters of Measure B are doing nothing more than a simple end-run around the City Council that passed rezoning the property at McKay and Central avenues, completely apart from any park area.

The City Council are our elected representatives. If Measure B supporters disagree with the Council’s actions, then they can back another candidate and vote them out or, in the extreme case, try a recall. To use a ballot measure to reverse this kind of decision is an overt, wasteful and meretricious attack on our form of government.

The proponents of Measure B have no good reason to oppose the wellness center — all their arguments are self-centered and fear mongering. This tiny zoning change, authorized according to proper procedure and based on independent review, leaves our current policies intact, but Measure B supporters claim it changes them.

They claim we will be flooded with homeless people from other cities, but this is a small facility. People come to our island community daily by every possible means. If they are homeless, they become residents as soon as they put down what little they bring. The location of this facility has no bearing on the overarching statewide issue of homelessness.

Claims that half of Alameda’s homeless are already in shelters are also false — we have one small shelter, reserved for women and children. The rest of these unfortunates are either hiding or hiding in plain sight. Vote “yes” on Measure A.


Stanley Hallmark

The recent story “Students Plan ‘Climate Strike’ Walkout Friday,” March 14, gave me a sense of foreboding. Are Alameda students being told they can change the climate? If so, can their teachers tell us what better climate would entail? How would weather change in a “better world”?

Do local students know that a glacier 750 to 2,500 meters thick covered large swaths of North America 13,000 years ago? Have students been told that there is no proven reason why the ice sheet formed or what caused it to melt over the next 8,000 years? Is our next generation aware that fossils in Arctic coal prove there were once verdant forests at 75 degrees north latitude? Are local students being taught that symbolic acts by small numbers in affluent cultures can improve earth’s climate? 

Are Alameda students taught carbon dioxide is plant food? Are they taught that most carbon dioxide is locked up in stone and without volcanoes emitting that carbon dioxide, the earth would be devoid of life? I understand plant growth nearly stops with a carbon dioxide level of 200 ppm or lower, and the growth rate increases all the way up to 2,000 ppm. The carbon dioxide level is currently 400 ppm. 

About the foreboding: I worry we are seeing our children indoctrinated into an anti-carbon cult that is really about taking away our energy freedom, yet carbon energy provides our quality of life. I feel the “green” elites do not like our lifestyles and are busy turning our children against the life we enjoy and value. 


Chris Penn

Recently I was crossing with my bike in the crosswalk at the intersection of Constitution Way and Atlantic Avenue. As I left the curb, obeying the light, I noticed a young driver looking left to make a right on red. The driver never checked right and headed right into me. Fortunately all she hit was my bike. I jumped and ended up sprawled on the ground shaken, but unhurt. To say I was angry is to put it mildly.
The driver pulled over and we exchanged information. We both realized how lucky we were. I was not seriously injured. This incident was a life changer. We parted amicably. The driver paid for my damaged wheel and called me the next day to make sure I was all right, I think the driver learned an important lesson: Don’t be in such a hurry and be aware of your surroundings. I am sure this driver will be a more conscientious and better driver going forward.

I am very active and almost 70 years old. I love to bike and walk with my dog around Alameda. Since my accident I do feel more vulnerable and cautious. The mistake I made is I did not make eye contact with my driver before I started into the crosswalk. So forgive me, since my accident, when I am crossing a street and you are driving a car, I am going to make a point of making eye contact to be sure you see me. 

I promise to wave thank you if you stop for me in the crosswalk. My advice to drivers: Slow down, get off your phones and be sure to look around, especially when you make a right turn at a red light. Pedestrians and bikers: Don’t assume that motorists see you and don’t demand your right of way. You can be dead right. Obey the law and make eye contact with an approaching motorist. If they stop, wave a thank you. It will make them want to do it again.  

We all need to share the road and be good neighbors. Hitting someone or being hit is a real-life game changer.


John Platt