Saturday’s Letters to the Editor

Fire trial

EDITOR: The prosecution of the Santa Rosa brothers who tried to reach their mother’s home after the fire is infuriating (“Brothers could go to jail,” Thursday). Excuse me, but I know many people who “snuck” onto their property to check on their house and their animals, for crying out loud.

As a matter of fact, I know someone who broke through two barricades during the fire to rescue a friend of mine who was waiting in a wheelchair.

You know who should be on trial? The so-called authorities who were partying at a conference in Yosemite and made the decision to not send an alert about the fires, resulting in the death of innocent souls, including hundreds of pets. When does that trial start?



Scaling back monuments

EDITOR: President Donald Trump’s action on national monuments requires some explanation. The 1906 Antiquities Act requires the president to reserve “the smallest area compatible with the proper care and management of the objects to be protected.”

By reserving 1.7 million acres, President Bill Clinton far exceeded the territory needed to protect the objects and locked up many acres of livestock grazing land that provided tax income to the local county and the state of Utah. A Utah State University study published in 2015 concluded that grazing on the protected lands had provided “significant economic benefits” to the region. The value was in the tens of millions of dollars.

In addition, the New York Times reported that the monument encloses the largest coal field in the nation, the Kaiparowitz Plateau, which contains at least 7 billion tons of coal worth over $1 trillion. It would have created 1,000 jobs, $1 million in annual revenue for Kane County and $10 million per year in state and federal taxes.

This coal is low sulfur, low ash — hence low polluting — the kind in demand for power plants. The only other place that produces coal of this quality is owned by the Lippo Group, an Indonesian conglomerate owned by the Riady family who raised and funneled millions of dollars into political campaigns.



Trump’s disparagement

EDITOR: Presidential use of profanity had nothing to do with the outcry that has, for the moment, derailed DACA talks (“Profanity upends DACA talks,” Friday). The leader of the free world disparaging neighbors and indeed entire continents on the basis of skin color has everything to do with it.

Only the most racist among us could possibly defend Donald Trump’s comment or pretend that it was just another salvo in the war against political correctness. The ballot box is the best place to end this kind of behavior, and I encourage all who bemoan the president’s continued assaults on decency to focus their efforts on turning the House and Senate this fall.



Media bias

EDITOR: Media bias? Of course, I expect it, only I wish the media were more upfront about their biases. Let me elaborate.

Good anecdotal evidence is provided by William F. Buckley in his book, “The Unmaking of a Mayor,” about his 1964 campaign to become mayor of New York City.