“UC Davis students rebel against fees for sports. As costs rise, should they bankroll athletics?” (sacbee.com, Jan. 19)
The UC Davis student fees and services initiative covers diverse programs, centers and services, including NCAA Division I sports, intramural sports clubs, recreational programs and the Equestrian Center. Our Council on Student Affairs and Fees reviews the initiative regularly, hearing from units supported through it and keeping campus leaders accountable. Our 40,000 students have diverging interests and needs. Like many of our student-focused programs, intercollegiate athletics receive support from student fees, generated revenue, donors and institutional support. Athletics create campus community and contribute to high performance on and off the field.
Kelly Ratliff, vice chancellor for finance, operations and administration, and Pablo Reguerin, vice chancellor for student affairs, UC Davis
“Fire and ice: PG&E’s Dixie Fire liabilities, snow outages show California utility unchanged,” (sacbee.com, Jan. 8)
Our system faced major challenges after a massive winter storm struck Northern California. In some areas, snowfall in one day broke accumulation records for the entire month of December. Thousands of PG&E and contract crews worked tirelessly through the holidays to make repairs and restore service to customers. Although we restored service within 72 hours to more than 315,000 of the 500,000 customers who lost power, the sheer amount of damage, access challenges and complex repairs meant some customers were without power for 10 days or longer. That’s not acceptable, and we never said that it was. We will be self-critical of our performance, identify lessons learned and improve our processes.
Adam Wright, executive vice president, operations and chief operating office, PG&E
“Navy blocked from acting against 35 COVID vaccine refusers,” (sacbee.com, Jan. 5)
The servicemen cite their Christian beliefs as a reason for forgoing the vaccine. What particular Christian doctrine supports this? The Ten Commandments? The Eight Beatitudes? A quote from the New Testament? Would Jesus support those who won’t vaccinate despite the fact that our hospitals are overrun with COVID victims who refused the shot and, at the same time, are endangering their lives and the lives of others who tried to do the right thing? COVID doesn’t care about our personal qualities or religious beliefs.
Division in SEIU
“Dispute at California’s largest state worker union lands in court, with request to oust president,” (sacbee.com, Jan. 16)
SEIU Local 1000 board member Bill Hall’s efforts to overturn an election of an elected president via lawsuit insults voting members. Making sure a $6 million real estate loan on SEIU’s midtown headquarters is paid off seems to be a prudent move – and not something that should have to be considered by the 50-plus-member SEIU board. Hall should work with elected SEIU President Richard Brown and whittle that 50 down to something closer to seven or nine SEIU board members. This constructive reform could result in progress and more dues-paying members.
George N. Kostyrko, retired state worker
We need help
“Sacramento sheriff is hiding information about jail COVID outbreaks from the public,” (sacbee.com, Jan. 17)
COVID in custody is a serious issue. Our lives are in danger every day. I am an inmate at the Rio Cosumnes Correctional Center in Sacramento County. Deputies wearing no masks spread the virus, leaving us with no choice but to be overcrowded with unvaccinated sick people. We have poor medical care. I have had COVID twice while in here, and I was not treated properly. I’m a pretrial inmate for three years and have had to continuously postpone my court dates due to COVID. It’s inhumane, and our lives are in jeopardy. We are no more than a few feet away from each other, and even when we are sick, we have to sleep next to several men in a very small confinement area. The public needs to know we need help.
“Gov. Gavin Newsom got it horribly wrong: Sirhan Sirhan deserved to be granted parole,” (sacbee.com, Jan. 13)
Epley forgets that Sirhan’s crime was not just the murder of a person but rather an attack upon our political system. At that moment in history, many thought – and hoped – that Robert F. Kennedy was the candidate to end the madness of the ’60s and restore sanity to America. While one cannot prove a counterfactual, RFK’s assassination arguably caused thousands of lives to be unnecessarily lost in Vietnam and continued the distortion of our national politics. To answer Epley’s question, we all still serve an “interminable sentence” as a consequence of Sirhan’s actions. Many still cry today remembering Bobby’s murder, another enduring sentence.
“Jack Ohman: Is there a spine in the House?” (sacbee.com, Jan. 16)
I love Jack Ohman’s political cartoons but have a slight disagreement with the point he’s trying to make here. Kevin McCarthy may be spineless, but he does not belong in the same biological family as all those small but glorious creatures Jack portrays. McCarthy is a prime example of Homo sapiens politicus, a dangerous and eternally loathsome subspecies of human being. Some think that these creatures belong in their own species, simply Homo politicus. They are proliferating wildly at the moment and tend to stick together like slimy masses of inert flesh. Avoid them at all costs. And don’t demean other creatures who are just trying to stay out of his way.
Kathryn A Klar