Letters for the Week of February 9

Readers sound off on Oakland Police, The New Parkway, and Amy Chua.

“Oakland Police Killed Fewer Suspects in 2010,” News, 1/26

Stop Dissing OPD

All of the media surrounding Oakland and its police force is routinely negative and I want to take a moment and recognize the great work that the force continues to do, despite their challenging work environment — high crime and a shrinking force.

Despite living in Oakland for more than a decade, last night was the first time I became a crime statistic. I was robbed at gun point last night near the West Oakland BART station, with my purse and computer being stolen (related to the Concord car jacking and kidnapping). Within a few hours, two officers, J. Fesmire (8757) and Y. Tatlisu (8691) had stopped the hijacked car and found my things. I was shocked when OPD called to notify me that my things had been found. As soon as I got off the phone, Officer M. Miller (8444) arrived to take my statement and then drove me to identify one of the suspects and to retrieve my belongings. My health is poor right now and Officer Miller was very sensitive to my needs.

I was shocked to learn that Officer Miller was patrolling alone — very dangerous when you are investigating a crime, in my opinion. While District 4 is relatively safe, I do not believe officers should be patrolling alone.

When I arrived in East Oakland at the crime scene, all of the officers were very professional, helping me retrieve my belongings. The crime scene was well contained and calm despite the very late hour, when all of the victims were tired.

I am proud to live in Oakland, and despite last night’s events, will continue to be a proud resident of Oakland. We must all work together to make Oakland the best place to live.

I challenge Mayor Quan, the city council, and the residents of Oakland to find a way to support our police department to make Oakland a safe place to live and visit.

Lisa Pfeil, Oakland

“Would Batts’ Departure Be That Bad?” Seven Days, 1/26

Eastlake’s Loss Is Temescal’s Gain

As someone living in the Temescal neighborhood, I would be thrilled to see not only the abandoned Omni get put back to use, but also to get a theater in the neighborhood that would draw folks from miles around. It would be a major win for the neighborhood. I am very sorry for Eastlake’s loss but that landlord sounds like a jerk; The New Parkway folks deserve a more reasonable landlord.

Theresa O’Connor, Oakland

“The Tiger Mother and the Talk Show Host,” Lectures & Lit Preview, 1/19

Old Stereotype, New Title

I do not begrudge Chua’s right to make money off her “a-ha” moment, but I do resent the way she has further propagated the stereotypical image of the “pushy” Asian parent.I am truly fortunate to have an academically successful daughter who achieved near-perfect SAT scores, and received offers from Harvard, Yale, and Princeton. I will take credit for having given her a whole lot of support, but I am certain my parenting skills had little to do with her college acceptances. In truth, I suspect race and gender played major roles.

And yet, I was always perceived as the pushy Asian mother by her teachers, and her counselors, and by other parents as well, Asian and non-Asian alike.

I feel that most people, including Asians, simply refuse to believe that a young Asian woman can be extremely motivated on her own.Chua and her publishers have every right to publicize her book, and they did a very good job, but it came at the expense of all the academically successful Asian students who will have an even harder time shaking the perception that they could not have accomplished much without their tiger mothers pushing them.Chua’s book has merely given an old stereotype a new name. Out with the pushy Asian mother, in with the roaring tiger mother. Somehow, I do not feel better.

Cynthia Lim, New York City

“Cut-Rate Crostini,” Food, 1/19

An Excellent Wine Curator

Awesome place. Besides the great food and spectacular wine, the staff is very friendly and makes you feel at home. And if you are just learning about Italian wines, Joe Madison is very knowledgeable and takes the time to find a wine that will dance on your palate!

Creighton Wong, Oakland

“New Legalization Effort Starts,” Legalization Nation, 1/12

A Bunch of Nonsense

What a shame! In this society of ever-increasing stress levels, how can they possibly justify keeping the substance that promotes violence (alcohol) “legal,” while insisting that the substance that suppresses violence (cannabis) should be kept “illegal”! Total absence of logic. Cannabis is not physically addictive, as it has no documented physical withdrawal syndrome associated with its use; smoking cannabis has been shown to have no connection with increased risk of lung cancer, the so-called “gateway drug” theory is a nonexistent entity altogether, and Marinol is a synthetic THC analogue, which is not at all the same thing as medicinal cannabis. The prestigious Substance Abuse: A Comprehensive Textbook states clearly that “Cannabis use suppresses violent behavior and only the unsophisticated think otherwise.” Unfortunately, many lawmakers are still swayed by the DEA lies in all these respects, but one thing is clear: Just like the KGB before it, the DEA will not be able to defend its mindless “dogmas” by repression alone; sooner or later the American people will clearly see this nonsense, and they will not tolerate it indefinitely!

Leonard Krivitsky, Philadelphia, PA

“Quan Gets Serious With Budget,” Seven Days, 1/12

Sleeping With the Enemy

Re: appointment of prison guard union supporters — keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Governor Brown may make use of their respective talents in ways of his choosing.

A.L. Warren, Oakland

“Solano Ave. Business Owners Worried Goodwill Won’t Be So Good for Business,” 92510, 2/1

I Heart Goodwill

I read your article about people trying to keep Goodwill off Solano Avenue in Berkeley and I felt sad. I love Solano Avenue, and I also love Goodwill. I got a pretty poodle backpack from there (I’m 10 by the way). I hope that we get a bunch of Goodwills on solano ’cause that would be awesome.

I don’t know why anybody would oppose puting in another Goodwill! Also, Goodwills don’t just sell cheap stuff, they also help people get jobs. I know people don’t want random items dropped in the front of their store, which wouldn’t happen, but if it did, just pick it up!

I really hope nobody complains enough to shut down the Goodwill because I am working on my own small business and I know I would not shut down my business from some snooty person complaining I was attracting “the wrong type.” If, for some bizarre reason, the Goodwill just isn’t allowed in the buildings in Berkeley,w I want them to know they are always welcome anywhere in Albany.

Ruby B., Albany


In our February 2 Local Licks column, we printed the wrong date for the upcoming Wayne Wallace Latin Jazz Quintet show. It’s at Yoshi’s on Feb. 21.


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