Letters for the Week of November 23, 2016

Readers sound off about the next four years.

“Congresswoman Barbara Lee on President Trump: ‘The Fight is Coming'” by Barbara Lee, Feature Story, November 16:

Kick The White Power Crowd Out Of The White House

I am so proud to have you represent me, Rep. Barbara Lee. Show us the way to protect and keep our American values. And get rid of the white supremacists he is allowing to control our White House and advise presidential policies.

Barbara Mullen

Stand With Us

Thank you Rep. Barbara Lee. I hope you will continue your good work to preserve our pluralistic, open society in the halls of Congress. While white nationalists, ISIS, and Putin’s Russia cheer the election results, the KKK and other groups plan victory parades through major cities all over the country. I hope that when they finally come to the Bay Area (and they will), you will stand with us to oppose them.

Dan Abbott

More Exclamation Points!

Standing is not enough! You need to open your mouth! Get on the Sunday morning shows because you have spoken out! Sign the petition to have electoral college electors vote against Trump! Can you do that? Get other Congress people to do the same! Some 4.3 million people have already signed the petition! That’ll get you noticed! And just maybe change will happen!

Paul Merr

Propoganda Won

What we just experienced was the result of full-on propaganda. Orchestrated with fake news, propaganda websites, and news channels. That propaganda played to the ears of the disenfranchised by transferring blame from the perpetrators of self-serving policy (the Republican Party) to minority groups who have been targeted. The rest of us stood by thinking, “Nobody could believe this crap.” We were wrong.

Stan Jay Pisle

“Oakland’s Ron Dellums on President Trump: ‘Step Forward'” by Ron Dellums, Feature Story, November 16:

Thanks, Ron Dellums!

Thank you, Ron Dellums, for these much-needed words of inspiration, hope, and guidance. We are fortunate that you still care — and are willing to continue to be a voice of wisdom and justice.

Alan Dones

Dellums’ Wisdom

I believe in the wisdom of Ron Dellums’ words in calling on the left to work with Democratic leadership in defense of the meaning of America and what Lincoln called the “natural better angels of our nature.”

Jim Mordecai

Wake Up

I thought it was an article about moving forward, not about the past. Another example of smoke and mirrors. Ron Dellums did more for this country and Oakland than most. Certainly more than internet commenters. Until you have risked something other than your feelings, your comments carry no weight, as they are misinformed and cliché. Dellums’ record is not the concern here, Donald Trump’s presidency and all the potential horrors it brings is. Wake up and do something different than talking about the past. It’s the future that’s in peril.

Vince Mackey

More Thanks For
Ron Dellums

Thank you Mr. Dellums for decades of service to the Bay Area and the international community. I recall supporting your work in Congress when I was a student at UC Berkeley in the late ’70s and early ’80s, and feeling empowered by someone who looked like me in office advocating passionately for environmental justice, world peace and economic and social justice. I was active in the anti-apartheid/UC divestment movement, the anti-nuclear movement, and the movement against financing death squads in El Salvador. Your article provides an encouraging message to young people today to lean-in, press forward and engage in the political process. I’m impressed by your institute’s work on anti-displacement strategies and coalition building including inter-generational work. The ‘haters’ and naysayers are often out there, so I encourage you and anyone else willing to step up and get involved to not fear opposition and ugliness. Love conquers hate. Justice requires us all to come together.

Moni Law

Feeling Hopeful

This was a really amazing article! I feel a lot more hopeful after reading it, and energized to help prevent the Democratic Party from compromising its progressive values in the wake of the election. I really liked the emphasis that there are many diverse interests encompassed in the party. It’s important to recognize the differences in goals between different subgroups, but also to realize that those goals (for the most part) aren’t mutually exclusive and to try to build unity.

Matt Kowaleski

Inspiring Words

Inspiring words from an incredibly inspiring man. Us young folk hear you! We will continue to fight this battle for justice. We recognize that this movement has no room for cynics, but visionaries. The movement has no room for fear and despair, and instead tenacity. We’ll continue to turn to our most dedicated leaders, such as yourself, for guidance and motivation. Thanks for the article!

Sinorti Iris Stegman

“We Will Resist” by various contributors, Feature Story, November 16:

Trump Government Will Kill The Planet

I am troubled by what I see are the vast moral inconsistencies that permeate American society. Not believing in science — but having a total addiction to the cell phone and internet. Believing in the right to life — but not the right to have clean air or water.

This is not a chicken-or-the-egg choice. Without air, death arrives in ten minutes, without water the kidneys die after four days.

Taking care of the planet should be a moral imperative. For the people about to take control of our government, it is not. And this is a moral disconnect from the meaning of life.

No matter what the religion, there are basic principles that have been handed down through time. Keeping one’s word, being honest, a sense of basic integrity, do unto others as you would have them do unto you. This seems to have been forgotten. It has become OK to do anything to anybody at any time for money. And, ultimately, this is an emotional and spiritual dead end.

We know the pursuit and use fossil fuels is a dead end. When alternative renewable energy hits the market, America’s fossil fuel industry and those employed by it will come to an end. Those trying to hold onto this way of life will fail and will drag the rest of us down with them.

Pollution is killing us slowly. It makes our eyes water and it becomes more difficult to breath. The results of the last two hundred years of the industrial age are all around us. Drought and fires in Alabama and Georgia. Rising tides covering the streets of Miami with six inches of water. Massive floods in Texas, Louisiana, and Nashville; changes in bird migrations; disappearing bees and butterflies; dying forests in the west as the summer fires grow ever more massive.

I want a government that believes in and upholds the basic human rights and values of which I have spoken. It is necessary for the survival of those that will follow us after we die.

Steve Deutsch, Berkeley


Elections are a huge diversion for liberal, lefties or anyone else. Sen. Bernie Sanders may be a nice guy, but his campaign was largely about corralling us into, and maintaining, the status quo.

The Democratic Party is a graveyard for activism. I say, first, take all the energy, all the money, and all the hours that go into canvassing for votes. Second, use them to build a permanent non-sectarian coalition of unions, a labor party, and issue-oriented organizations (LGBTQ, African-American, pro-single-payer health care, anti-war, etc).

What individuals do on their own is their business. But the member organizations of this political front would have nothing to do with the major parties.

Movements like Occupy may be well-intended, but they accomplish nothing if they are not much better organized and are incapable of learning the lessons from what worked and what didn’t work. For once, I want to win, baby.

If we’re able to accomplish that and we’re united, make it clear that if the White House even hints at another war or acts to harm the lives of people at home or abroad, we strike as one and halt the machine! Yes, a general strike — or two or three. Then we can speak and discuss like the 99 Percent we are but with a lot more muscle.

Think that’s unrealistic? Well, when have elections or scrounging around for lesser evils changed much?

Vaughn Hovanessian, Oakland


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