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Stuffing “Best of� ballots
 
I have just finished looking through the "Best of" issue and I have to say that I am amazed. So many businesses that have been in existence less than a year are ranking in not just one, but also multiple categories. I'm puzzled. Is this some crazy coincidence, or a true representation of the county's opinion? I would hope it's the latter since nobody would ever stoop so low as to "stuff" the ballot box. Or would they?

Mario Jiminez
San Luis Obispo



Moral “cripples�?
 
I find it interesting that someone of Glattice Chambelian’s delicate sensibilities [Letters, April 27] wouldn’t think to get a little more information about a show [The Cripple of Inishmaan, reviewed April 20] before making a decision to attend, especially on the holiest of holy days, Easter Sunday.

Whether easily offended or not, it just makes good sense to get some background information about a show before deciding to pay for a ticket. Whining about the “offensive�humor of an amazing show that is reviewed as a dark comedy doesn’t make the rest of the audience immoral, it makes Glattice’s powers of logic seem minute. Which can’t be true if she spends the entire day reading the Bible, as she would have us think.

Minerva Mendez
Oceano



When Fidel pays for what for stole. . .
 
Re Kathy Johnston’s story “You can’t go home again� [New Times, April 13]: George “Jorge� Milanes was three years old when Fidel Castro nationalized all private, American-owned, publicly-traded corporations, without benefit of compensation. The great dictator “stole� the assets of everyday American citizens, some elderly, not unlike Mr. Milanes’ kin, still confined to a desperate communist-controlled island managed by a thief.
 
Perhaps Mr. Milanes and his compadres will one day rise up and throw out thief and gain the democracy Mr. Milnes enjoys in his secure civil service position in Los Osos, where a change in government (by the will of the people) has not witnessed one government-issued military bullet piercing a child’s bedroom [a scene described in Johnston’s story].
 
When Fidel pays for what he and his government purloined from the American public and established democracy, perhaps we “can all just get along.�

Curt Lint/US Merchant Marine (Ret.)
Los Osos



PAY for something???
 
So Elizabeth Carroll wants the public to know the truth about the horrible treatment at the Prado Day Center, and the homeless shelter. You actually have to do some work to get something.  Heaven forbid!!!  And if you want some items you have to PAY for them?   My god, what are those people thinking?
 
Elizabeth, I will let you in on a secret.  I pay for everything I have.  I
don't expect anything for free.  You seem to think that you are entitled to all this stuff that you want, without having to work for it.  There seems to be a growing section of society in the county, that even though able-
bodied, doesn't want to work.  You go downtown, you see all these able-bodied young people with their pit bulls, sitting around all day long, every day.  Always seem to have their cigarrettes, though. 
 
Elizabeth, you probably aren't going to change.  Neither am I.  Don't ask me for anything, since I won't give you anything, and I won't tell you what I really think of you. I won't ask you for anything, and we won't have any problems.  Have a nice day.

Robert Jones
Oceano, CA 93445
corndog67@msn.com



Continuous acts of generosity
 
As Elizabeth Carroll wrote last week, “not all of the homeless are rude drunks or addicts, in fact some of them may be the sweetest people you’ll ever meet.� I couldn’t agree more. As a city bus driver, I have often witnessed continuous acts of generosity between the homeless. I can’t remember the last time I gave my last dollar to a friend in need, but it’s a common occurrence among them. Only the desperate know the real meaning of sharing.
 
When I was in a personal crisis, the homeless knew not to offer glib solutions that hurt. Instead they showered me with words of appreciation and love. So many homeless have been so badly treated that they know how to care for the hurting.
 
When I began bus driving, an engineer asked me to marry him…but I had noticed the sweet and generous attitude of one of the homeless. The more I got to know him, the more I realized what a find he was. This past year he has re-landscaped and painted my house, fixed the plumbing and my car, built a fence while banishing me from the kitchen as my sons extolled his great cooking all over town. He’s been a hard-working model citizen, and we were married two weeks ago. I’ve dated celebrities, politicians, lawyers, everyone from engineers to ski patrollers, and I have never met anyone with as many good qualities as my new husband. So as gas prices soar and more ride the bus, sit next to the homeless, you might get to know someone amazing.

Jen Bokar



“Dalidio’s Lip� skirts truth

In his reply to my letter about the Dalidio initiative, Dave Cox conspicuously evaded the central point—if passed, this initiative will set two precedents with destructive consequences for every town in this county.  It’s no accident that Dalidio’s hired lip blows smoke with personalized innuendos and regurgitated historical irrelevancies.  Once people see clearly what those precedents mean for their own neighborhoods, they’ll vote against the initiative.
 
Cox wrote that “this project� has been subjected to years of review, multiple reports and hearings.  This is false.  As the former, 21-year,County Planning Director, Ned Rogoway, wrote in his open letter (“Dalidio’s petition is SOAR all over again�), “it has been redesigned, taking an entirely new form ... Dalidio wants to avoid the county’s normal review procedures ... there are no provisions for water supply, police and firefighting services … there would be no hearings to allow interdepartmental, intergovernmental and public review and comment.�  As the Ballot Summary makes clear, “The initiative exempts this land use category from most other existing County regulations, guidelines, ordinances, and code provisions that regulate land use and development� As the subject of an initiative, the project would also be exempt from state law requiring the collection of other vital information before any decision is made.  Do you want projects near your town decided this way?

By putting this project to a countywide vote, the voices of those most familiar with it, and most likely to bear its burdens, will be weaker than if it had to comply with the rules others must obey.  The ability of citizens to influence their local representatives about projects near their own community would be severely diminished.  This isn’t about trying “to stand in the way of our right to vote,� as Mr. Cox implies. It’s about defending local control and our power to shape developments in our own neighborhoods.  Do you want your voice similarly diluted?

These two precedents will have serious, long-term consequences for all towns in SLO County if the initiative passes.  The SLO Mayor and Council know this, having written on April 14th and 18th that the initiative “may well set a precedent for how the county†will deal with all of its cities for years to come� and about its “long-term policy and precedence implications for our county and its cities.�  By denying your local government necessary information about future projects, the initiative’s precedents would render its decisions virtually blind.  By diluting your vote with those of all voters in SLO County, your voice about your town’s future would be rendered relatively mute.  Are you ready to surrender your town’s autonomy and the power of your voice?

There’s a reason Dalidio’s paid propagandist avoids addressing the precedents this initiative would set, and uses a smoke screen to distract from and hide itd effects on all towns in our county.  When voters understand how their influence and local control over future projects near their own communities will be wiped out as a result of this initiative, they’ll check the “NO� box on the ballot, regardless of their views on this particular project.

David Broadwater
Atascadero
(csi@thegrid.net)



May Day, May Day

 
May 1st has long been celebrated as an international worker’s day. I remember when I grew up in the 50s that we celebrated May Day in elementary school. I remember that day was dedicated to the workers of the world—all these people in our communities who did the labor to farm, ranch and build, not to mention educate, nurse and protect.
 
The economic boycott across the U.S. on May 1st was for only one day. I hope the message to all U.S. citizens is that all immigrants, legal and illegal, have a major impact on our entire economy. Missing one day of work or school will not have any major effect on the life of any individual who is willing to work or pursue an education. By rallying together we will be a strong voice that says making 12 million people instant felons because they came here to work is morally wrong.
 
I have friends from Canada, England, France, Germany, Vietnam, China, Japan, Philippines, African nations that are considered illegal aliens because they applied for citizenship over 10 years ago but are still waiting to be processed by INS. Their records have been lost; their meetings with officials have been canceled after they’ve traveled hundreds of miles and waited all day for the meeting. These people are trying beyond the call of duty to be legal immigrants. We cannot make these people instant felons because they came here to work and contribute to our society.
 
I urge your readers to support legislation that will provide a way for anyone who is here working to be able to keep working. If they want citizenship there should be a procedure for that to happen. If they have family back in their home country and they are only interested in being here temporarily to support that family, there should be a robust guest worker program. If they are criminals, terrorists or non-working slackers, they should be deported to their own country.
 
As for building any fence across our borders, I can’t help but think about the Berlin Wall, or for that matter the Israeli Wall. America celebrates freedom, not exclusion. There are more efficient ways to protect our borders than building megabuck, environmentally damaging fences.

Ken Highfill
Cayucos, Calif. 93430



Better off without ‘em
 
I found businesses so vibrant without illegals around the day of their march Monday, I wish they'd stay away more often.

Ray Pezzoli Jr.
Kihei, Maui HI


 

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