Letters to the Editor

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Editor:
Beneath the passionate debate surrounding the recent Alameda special election lies perhaps an overlooked bipartisan tale: the efforts by the Alameda County Registrar of Voters staff who teamed up with many volunteers to make the April 9 election a reality.

As a new participant, I observed the proceedings firsthand. From the outset, I was impressed by the mandatory three-hour training session for all poll workers. As a retired teacher, I appreciated the in-class instruction and the applications which included useful hands-on activities.

Work hours included a preliminary, one-hour Monday evening set-up followed by a voting day shift which ran from 6 a.m. until nearly 9 p.m. Election materials in two different, carefully sealed delivery carts — from ballots and index lists to collapsible voting booths and three different color-coded ballot trollies — had to be properly assembled and safeguarded before the polls opened at 7 a.m. 

Each voting precinct was led by an inspector and a judge who made certain all procedures were followed to the letter (e.g., when to issue a provisional ballot, who needs voter assistance). My two supervisors — overseen by a roving multi-precinct coordinator — rotated the various job responsibilities to further ensure security and attentiveness throughout the 13-hour voting period.

The stipend was modest, but the real takeaway was witnessing the hard work and dedication exhibited by those around me. As Robert F. Kennedy once said, “Each citizen’s right to vote is fundamental to all the other rights of citizenship.”

 

Rob Sloan

Editor:
In response to the recent letter from Hunter Cobb (“No revenge for Mueller, but...,” April 11), I disagree with with all but one of the letter’s points, that being that there is indeed a “perversion of our system” that should never happen again. 

In my opinion, that perversion is the person currently sitting in the Oval Office. He is currently leading the most corrupt, cruel, reckless and pathetically incompetent administration in my lifetime, and I lived through RIchard Nixon! 

While Donald Trump is currently claiming exoneration, let me remind everyone that until last week no one except his hired gun Bill Barr had actually seen the report, so maybe pump the brakes with the celebration and outrage? If it truly clears Trump of wrongdoing, why not release it for all to see? What are they afraid of? Similarly with his tax returns. What is he hiding? 

I won’t address the numerous Fox “news” fever-dream conspiracy theories that the letter promotes. I’d rather just make note of the following facts to support my claim that 45 is the most corrupt and unqualified person ever to hold the office of president of the United States.

  • He continues to violate the emoluments clause of the constitution, profiting off his office, 
  • He is weakening all our democratic alliances while advancing the global interests of Putin,
  • He surrounds himself with felons and unqualified family members while all the qualified “adults in the room” have jumped ship, and 
  • He has told an astounding more than 8,000 lies since being in office. 

And do I need to mention his affinity for “the fine people on both sides” in Charlottesville? He may deny that he’s a racist, a white supremacist and an Islamophobe but one thing he can’t deny: the racists, white supremacists and Islamophobes sure think he is. 

So yes, there is a perversion of our system that should never happen again. Hopefully the next election will remedy that.

 

Steven Heller

Editor:
Let’s face it. The underlying issue, the only issue, was fear of the homeless in our neighborhood. This was polarizing. In the letters to the Alameda Sun, some supporters of Measure B characterized the homeless as mentally ill, drug users and convicts who should be forcibly kept out of Alameda. The extreme other view asked how supporters of Measure B would have treated a singular homeless person in history, Christ.

Many Alamedans would recognize my face as the person at their door the past few months, engaging with them to vote “yes” on Measure A and “no” on Measure B. “Engage” means to listen before speaking. If you ignore the repugnant rhetoric from the Friends of Crab Cove (FOCC), there were thoughtful and compassionate supporters of Measure B who had legitimate concerns about the location.

I believe that the Alameda Point Collaborative shares the legitimate concerns, as they should. To ignore the risks is to invite them to happen. That applies to FOCC, as well. 

There was a time when FOCC engaged in a positive way with Alameda Point Collaborative, before FOCC’s attorney instructed the group to stop. Now is the time to reengage. Time for FOCC to bring forward legitimate concerns. Time for Alameda Point Collaborative to listen. Time to knuckle down and address the legitimate concerns as neighbors — because neighbors you are.

 

Frank Tiesma

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