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Baby seals, baby humans

I wonder if residents of the county will catch the irony between the two volunteer articles, "They walk the line" and "Seal of approval" (Jan. 4). I'd be surprised if it slipped past your editor.

New Times was, on one hand, helping recruit volunteers to assist in destroying the life of an unborn child simply because it was not wanted and, on the other, encouraging folks to enjoy and relish the fascinating life and birth of our resident elephant seals. end human life, with no qualms just help women brave abortion protesters and then, in the afternoon, go celebrate the marvelous show the baby seals put on. Amazing. Just imagine if this was turned around. Seal escorts helping pregnant mother seals kill their pups while protecting them from people who are willing to do anything to help them through this difficult time. Baby docents giving assistance and making sure that mothers are able to deliver their babies in a safe and peaceful environment, all the while educating people and saying things like "this is life, and you're looking right at it."

Imagine if the 90 volunteers of The Friends of the elephant Seals (who I think do a terrific job) gathered up all their time, love, care, money, and dedication and moved it down to our local abortion clinic and did the same things in support of human babies as they do for seals. Imagine if the abortion escorts quit, wandered down to the seal colony, spent time with the baby seals, and learned anew how precious life is and realized how they had been duped into thinking they were helping their fellow (wo)man. Imagine, what a wonderful world it would be! Russ Berg

San Luis Obispo




Food for thought on a winter night

A fire, just one mile from the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant, has not been contained for more that 24 hours. The terrain is rugged and isolated. The weather conditions, though very dry, are calm though it's not hard to imagine the Santa Anas, on a very warm autumn day, blowing out into the Pacific, perhaps on the heels of a seven-year drought, increasing the fire danger. (The Central Coast has seen escalated fire condition like this for many years.)

I mention this in conjunction with safety and security of the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant.

What if the fire was set within a window of opportune weather conditions, with the intent to inundate the PG&e facility? Though not as spectacular as an air attack or commando raid on the plant and the spent fuel rods in on-site storage, the concerns for safety of the surrounding communities would still be worrisome.

Have these exposures been considered in the planning scenarios for Diablo Canyon safety and security?

Food for thought on a cold and dry winter night.

Howard Romano

Los Osos




You're not a single mother, are you?

In response to the opinion printed in the Jan. 11 issue of New Times, "You're not a mommy yet":

Tania Kim of Santa Maria wrote: "However they did not love them enough to place them with a loving couple, who more than likely could not have children of their own, who would have been able to give these children a life that those single moms simply could not."

This sentence had me stepping and fetching like my head was on fire and my behind was catching.

I come from one of these broken homes, and it downright infuriates me to have you insult the tremendous work and love my mother put into raising me. Undoubtedly I am not alone in this as the staggering divorce rate and single-parent statistics would show. I will not contest the studies regarding single parent families vs. the traditional family unit.

I would, however, ask that before you slander any mother out there, let alone every "single" mother, you think long and hard about the fact that they LOVeD their children enough to not give them away to the system or to anyone, loving or otherwise.

Why should my mother not celebrate being a single mom?

She had enough courage to take up the role of mother and father, when she could have chosen an easier path.

Single mothers are far from selfish. Since you're not a single mommy, you couldn't know or appreciate the sacrifices and rewards involved with keeping your children.

Single mothers love their children just as unconditionally as you do.

I am very thankful that my mother lacked the love needed to shrug her responsibility and give me away.

Shane Beegle

Paso Robles




Support children, regardless of their sexuality

As a stable, sober 53-year-old gay man, I completely agree that the agenda presented by Mr. Otis Page is a fraud on society ("Homosexual agenda is a fraud on society," Jan. 4). It is a fraud because it was concocted by Mr. Page himself and has absolutely nothing to do with the opinions of the many gay and lesbian people that I am proud to call my friends. The consensus is that group of people believes the following:

1) That children (both boys and girls) need to be taught that they have sexual boundaries and that if ANYONe (male or female) should suggest crossing those boundaries or attempt to do so, that the child needs to get away from that person and tell a trusted adult about the encounter.

2) No child should be taught to hate themselves or be targeted for abuse because of their naturally evolving sexuality.

3) The notion of teaching gay sex techniques is utterly ludicrous. If you're gay, you figure that stuff out. It isn't all that complicated. But in light of the catastrophic epidemic of AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases (which is affecting ALL people, both gay and straight), we do support that information about safe sex be made available to every one.

Whether we like it or not, some teenagers will make the decision to become sexually active with each other. They need to have an understanding of safe sex practices, and abstinence as well as the use of condoms needs to be included in that information. Above all, we need to love, protect, and nurture all of our children, regardless of their sexuality. The agenda of hatred, judgment, and condemnation supported by Mr. Page promotes only fear and secrecy, which makes it a truly dangerous agenda.

Jim Kunkler

San Luis Obispo




Tip your hat to global-warming hucksters

Well, the prophets of global warming have finally convinced most that doomsday is coming and are getting their government grants to "study" how it is affecting anything and everything, what they have really wanted all the time.

That is, unlimited government funds for their hobbies.

They are not unlike the gloom and doom religious preachers, except those hucksters only con money from gullible, mostly uneducated individuals, whereas the global warming hucksters get millions times more and all of it our tax funds.

One must take off one's hat to the global warming gurus they have the ultimate marketing scheme to get rich quick, and do it legally too!

Roy Berger

Arroyo Grande




There's nothing new here, George

George Bush should know that while sending a bunch of American troops to Iraq may be a military strategy, it is not a new military strategy. He should also know that the American people know the difference.

Jim Ringley





Get that tank outta here

Imagine how some of us might feel if we drove home and found a big billboard of two men kissing right on our corner. That was my reaction when I saw the Central Coast Veterans (CCV) tank. The CCV has gotten its members (none of whom seem to live here) to write in and complain about not being respected, but they've shown no regard for the homeowners in the neighborhood.

The CCV gave no consideration for the citizens of precincts 313 or 520 who will have to walk past it to vote. Many of us see it as a symbol of violence, not protection. My children play on the cannon on the lawn, but this is so big and right in your face that it frightens them.

The Community Development Department suggested (as did a World War II vet in the neighborhood) that the tank be placed in the rear parking lot by the museum, but the CCV chose to place it right on Grand Avenue.

I, for one, would very much appreciate you taking it back to your neighborhood!

Jack Artusio

San Luis Obispo




Good job, Lido

A few months ago, my displeasure with Ms. Hardesty's attempts to equate Lido in Pismo Beach with Hoppe's Gardens and Bistro Laurent was published in your prestigious columns.

Having visited Lido several times since that time, twice with my wife during the recent year-end festivities, one is moved to write that Lido has improved its list of the fine elixir that goes with gourmet food and it is hoped Lido will continue to strive for some "Grand Crus" and "Montrachets."

One must give accolades to the floor service, especially when my wife was with me.

Brahama D. Sharma

Pismo Beach




Who's the fool?

Shirley Bianchi closed her recent letter with, "It is better to keep one's mouth shut and be thought a fool, than open it up and dispel any doubt" ("Do you really think I had that kind of power?" Jan. 4).

Though agreeing with her last comment, I direct that assessment to her. Ms. Bianchi seems to misunderstand that elected officials are supposed to represent their constituents and not hector them. Ms. Bianchi is so lowly regarded in Los Osos in that she emboldened board members to ignore the majority of the electorate. They could not have rigged the site for permitting without Bianchi's help with "overriding consideration." Her constituents lost the four years the RWQCB gave them to solve the 20 years of county project neglect.

Bianchi was an accomplice in squandering time, resources, and the trust of the community, and, finally, denigrated the reputation of Los Osos to the state. even after citizens passed a measure calling for the move of the unacceptable prematurely initiated bloated project, she found it appropriate to lecture the voters and actively seek the failure of a project compromise agreement with the state agency that trusted her judgment when they issued the loan to pay for it.

elected officials are the peoples' representatives to government bodies, agencies, and other elected officials they are not the government's representatives to the people. Ms. Bianchi has opened her mouth in her letter and in Viewpoint pieces touting the nearly unlimited power of regulatory agencies. And she has, sadly, dispelled any doubt about her competence as a representative in a democracy.

Norman Risch

Los Osos



It's time to do something about Bush

Toward the end of the Clinton administration, the phrase "Clinton fatigue" was often heard. I thought the fatigue was with the right wing's endless investigations, special prosecutors, and rumor mongering. The net result was finding that Clinton lied to save the honor of a woman.

Throughout the current administration, I have been subject to "Bush nausea." It started in 2000, when I cringed every time Bush butchered a sentence during an address. His dull stare as he read his lines like a reluctant fourth grader made me switch him off immediately. Then, he started his disastrous policy decisions: gutting programs that help those that need it massive tax cuts for billionaires runaway debt counterproductive energy, environmental, and foreign policies and the extensive corruption, lies, stolen elections, and civil rights violations. I know many whose stomachs turn at the sight of this sneering, swaggering, sadistic, stupid frat boy who has wreaked havoc on our country and Constitution.

And now, when even the corporate media are acknowledging the lies underlying the rush to war, Bush has the arrogance and megalomania to expand the war and hints at nuking Iran. The time has come for Americans to demand immediate impeachment of Bush and Cheney.

David Georgi

Shell Beach

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