Letters to the Editor

Historic faire a success

September 15, 2014 — 

I recently attended the historical faire, “Remember When,” held at the Nevada City Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Eric Anderson and Rick Simms of the Piney Creek Weasels delighted us with bluegrass music as we visited the various booths. Richard Johnson from the Nisenan Tribe had a storehouse of artifacts and information about the Nisenan Indians from this area. Terry McMahan and Charlie Jakobs from Nevada County Consolidated Fire District brought an old Nevada City Fire Engine. Judy Mabry from Hooper & Weaver Mortuary had plenty of information packets for those of us facing the loss of a loved one. David Davidson-Methot and Millie Beatie of Emmanuel Episcopal Church shared the history of their beautiful church in Grass Valley. Virginia Guilbert with California’s Pioneer Heritage taught us about the Mormon Battalion. Eileen Phelps and Helen Martini represented the Nevada County Genealogical Society. And Robert Reed, Cynthia Johnson and Eric Johnson were busy at the LDS Family History Center station.

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Haiku - on the way to Red Dog Road

September 15, 2014 — 

i walk on the trail

from gracie to red dog road

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Get engaged

September 14, 2014 — 

Last Friday I read in disbelief the announcement of the upcoming debate between Gov. Brown and the Republican contender, Niel Kashkari, that took place the night before. How is it possible to have this article published the day after the event? Did the editor read the AP article before publishing it? Was the assumption that no one would be interested, or that Gov. Brown is a shoo in, regardless of what Mr. Kashkari may have to say or offer? A recent “Our View” article bemoaned that not enough people are politically engaged. Well, is The Union engaged?

By no means does The Union stand alone in making the only debate for the highest office in our state a non-event. The powers be, scheduled the debate on the same night as a major football game, meaning, that, most likely those under 60 would be watching that. The debate was televised only on two stations, Fox Sacramento and CSPAN. Not exactly mainstream.

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Fortunate to have InConcert Sierra

September 14, 2014 — 

Once a tuba player in college and semi-professional orchestras, I’m always hungry to hear the rich inner voices I learned to love in symphonic music. Here’s good news: we can all hear them at the Sept. 21 fundraiser concert by InConcert Sierra’s excellent Orchestra!

Maestro Ken Hardin has designed an interesting program spanning diverse musical styles and periods from the late 17th century right up to our time.

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One of us?

September 14, 2014 — 

At least once a day, I pass a sign that reads, “Elect Doug LaMalfa. He’s one of us.” I always wonder, ‘Who’s not one of us?’

Jim Cunningham

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Best hospital stay ever

September 14, 2014 — 

To the staff of employees of Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital, I just want to thank you for the friendly and professional care that was extended to me during my recently short stay.

Never have I seen so many “strangers” give beyond their normal duty to help make an old man comfortable and content. It was “almost” a joy to be in your hospital! I sincerely appreciated the camaraderie and care, and I shall never forget.

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What a great country!

September 13, 2014 — 

In response to Ron Lowe, you are right. I’m tired of hearing Republicans complain about the president.

Barack Obama is the greatest president ever. Prior to 2008, I had to work at least 40 hours a week to pay my bills. Now, I get taxpayer-funded handouts that you help pay for. Thanks man! I haven’t paid for food, rent or medical care for awhile (loving that free Obamacare).

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Don’t trash Nevada County

September 13, 2014 — 

This is to support Susan Perry’s recent “Trash talk” letter.

On the one hand, we have Jon Gregory and the ERC working hard to come up with ideas to entice new industry to the area, on the other hand we are wading through trash on our streets. If Grass Valley and Nevada City were properties for sale, the real estate agent would say, “If you want to sell this property, clean up the trash and mow the lawn.”

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Merci beaucoup

September 13, 2014 — 

We would like to give accolades to some of the most generous and hospitable families in our county.

For three weeks, 16 families participated in a cultural exchange program involving French high school students. These families opened their homes and hearts to students here to expand their knowledge of our culture. All of the families displayed remarkable willingness to share their time and resources with their new “son” or “daughter.” As we said our tearful “au revoirs” it was obvious more than just housing took place.

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Nisenan Heritage Day a success

September 13, 2014 — 

Our community once again showed their support and interest for our Nevada County Native American Tribe the Nisenan.

Saturday, Sept. 6, was the Fifth Annual Nisenan Heritage Day. We would like to thank Sierra College for once again co-sponsoring this wonderful cultural event, The Union for being receptive to our message of historical relevance and CHIRP for continuing to support the important work of the Nevada City Rancheria.

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Thoughtful acts

September 13, 2014 — 

I want to acknowledge two thoughtful acts recognizing the recent passage of my dad, Wiley Martin.

Thank you Assemblymember Dahle (with help from Assemblymembers Chesbro and Gordon) for adjourning the California State Assembly on Aug. 14 in honor of my father’s passage, speaking about his heroism in World War II, as well as his contributions to the state’s schools as a teacher, principal and administrator, and his excellence as a father and grandfather.

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Thanks to our firefighters

September 13, 2014 — 

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you to the firefighters who did such a fantastic job of putting out so quickly the potentially dangerous fire in Nevada City on Sept. 7.

They deserve everyone’s respect and appreciation.

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September 13, 2014 — 

Don’t trash Nevada County

This is to support Susan Perry’s recent “Trash talk” letter.

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Additional tips to ease kindergarten jitters

September 12, 2014 — 

Additional tips to ease kindergarten jitters

While in Grass Valley back in August, I read Cory Fisher’s article on “kindergarten jitters.” Nice work, Cory. A good way to help parents ease into having their “babies” go off on their own.

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Downieville and Sierra City need timely medical care

September 11, 2014 — 

Sierra City Fire Chief Brian Davey is absolutely correct in his remarks about Western Sierra Medical Clinic.

The issue is about a very serious community need — timely medical care in Downieville, Sierra City, and environs, and that has to come before business considerations; emergencies don’t wait. Our family has used the clinic twice in the last three years: my 89-year-old mother was having serious difficulty breathing at the Sierra City elevation and needed very timely treatment, which the clinic provided. I had a bad case of food poisoning, dehydration and nausea that would not stop, and again the clinic provided very necessary medication and care.

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Piling on and cheap shots

September 11, 2014 — 

I remember yard duty as a school principal in the early 1950s. We had to be alert for young boys identifying an adversary, getting him down and all “piling on,” or jumping on top of him. Many had no idea why they were piling on but only that it seemed the popular thing to do. All the presidents in my life, including Herbert Hoover, suffered critics “piling on.” President Obama, however, is getting more and frequent criticisms and ire. Along with the blind critics I too think CIA Director Brennan should have been fired when the CIA violated their franchise by spying on members of Congress. I had problems before that with the renditions to Poland of suspected terrorists. Remember the Nazis used Poland for at least eight death camps. Foreign Intelligence gathering is more than enough work for the CIA without their acting like the KGB and usurping the FBI and other agencies responsibility for homeland security.

Regardless, the tenor of several letters printed in The Union demonstrate ignorance about the president, the Constitution and our U.S. system of representative government. Remember also the president won his second term by 60 percent of the electoral vote and a million votes by your neighbors and other U.S. citizens. His background includes both parents earning Ph.D.s and President Obama has taught Constitutional law before entering politics.

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Growing population strains government budgets

September 11, 2014 — 

In reference to “Grass Valley braces for $2 million budget shortfall.” Now we know that Grass Valley is not the only city, county and state with this problem.

We have the homeless, jobless and those looking for jobs and those whose lives are supplemented by the generosity of others or our government. Even our veterans are not getting the attention they deserve.

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Letter lacked facts, meant to divide

September 11, 2014 — 

On Aug. 29, The Union published a letter from Mr. Dick Panzica asking, “Where’s our president?” It contained some of the usual right-wing talking points regarding the president’s recent vacation, and his violation of the Constitution. Misguided as these statements are, they are not slanderous or hurtful.

But it is how Mr. Panzica concludes: “I believe he hates America and Christians and is sympathetic to radical Islamists. He should be run out of office for dereliction of his sworn duties”; that raises an issue regarding The Union’s decision to print his letter.

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Can’t buy an M-14 replica pellet gun in California

September 9, 2014 — 

When in the Marine Corps (3rd MARDIV) my favorite weapons were the Semi Auto (mostly) M-14 Rifle (not a gun) and the M-60 Machine Gun. The M-14 is the best rifle the Marine Corps ever issued. My son (4th MARDIV) disagrees and probably my grandfather (1st MARDIV Iwo Jima) would disagree, and, the Uncle Corpsman from the Korean Frozen Chosen (1st MARDIV).

But knowing I cannot obtain an M-14 in California, I tried to order a replica M-14 pellet gun out of Minnesota through a mail order house. No, you cannot order pellet (as in BB) guns or pellets (BB’s) to be delivered to California. I’ll have the M-14 replica pellet gun delivered to son in Montana to at least preserve a bit of our three generations of Marine Corps history. I suggested to the very helpful young lady placing my order to keep this conservation in mind when voting in November.

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Where’s there’s smoke, there are .... good Samaritans

September 9, 2014 — 

I would just like to thank all of those who responded to the fire on Colfax Highway on Saturday, Aug. 30, including the Peardale Fire Dept., Grass Valley, Chicago Park and all other fire departments, including Nevada, Placer and Yuba Cal-Fire.

Also, thank you to all the ground crews that put so much hard work and effort into protecting the surrounding homes. Amazing job, all of you! I would also like to thank all the neighbors and random strangers who assisted and especially those who watched over my dog during the ordeal.

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Letter to reckless driver

September 9, 2014 — 

On Friday, July 18, my wife and I drove on the frontage road past the Holiday Inn Express and were turning left onto Colfax Avenue.

Our light had turned green seconds before we got to the intersection. Because the view of traffic from the left is extremely poor, I slowed to a crawl, and that is what saved us all.

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Trash talk

September 9, 2014 — 

The other day I was coming home up Highway 49, and I became aware of the trash along side of the road. Now I am not talking about plastic bags hanging from trees and fences, that is another issue.

Trash — cups, bottles, cans, paper bags, paper, socks, sofa cushions, trash bags full of trash, building materials you name it — it was on the side of the road Now I understand that things can blow out windows and you have no control of that, but come on people, cover and tie down your load.

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No excuse for killing an unarmed suspect

September 8, 2014 — 

While I am a firm supporter of our law enforcement officers, I am very disappointed in their inability to subdue people without shooting them fatally.

I have no problem with a knife-wielding suspect being shot should they attack an officer but it seems to me that shooting them in the knee or leg would subdue them enough for capture.

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Bad drivers back on the road

September 8, 2014 — 

Do fender benders give cause for revoking a driver’s license? If so, then why are there so many people still out on the road? If it were the fact that dangerous drivers should not have a driver’s license, why is it that time and time again I see and hear of vehicular manslaughter, reckless driving, and texting while driving are allowed back on the road?

Yet when elderly, disabled, truck driver, bus driver, policeman, fireman, or younger than 18 if in a fender bender or after so many tickets even if only parking tickets they are required to fight to keep their driver’s license. If it is so important to have safe drivers why is it only a certain group of people are under this scrupulous judgment? Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty and all are equal in the eyes of the law? A wise man also once did say, “thou who has not sinned cast the first stone.” With what I just witnessed in this new “who has the best lawyer wins” world there should be a very small number of people driving.

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Needing help with hip pain

September 7, 2014 — 

When I was at a Food Bank distribution at the Salvation Army in April, I lost my balance and fell down backwards.

I was carried over to the Salvation Army office by three men, due to the pain in my right hip, which has worsened since. I notified my doctor and had X-rays, but to the best of my knowledge they could not find anything. I asked my doctor if she could find me a hip doctor, but I am still in a lot of pain. I recently was taken by ambulance to the hospital and spent the night there because I was in so much pain. They X-rayed me and took MRIs, but could not find anything wrong with me as there was no hip doctor there at the time.

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Trash talk

September 7, 2014 — 

The other day I was coming home up Highway 49, and I became aware of the trash along side of the road. Now I am not talking about plastic bags hanging from trees and fences, that is another issue.

Trash — cups, bottles, cans, paper bags, paper, socks, sofa cushions, trash bags full of trash, building materials you name it — it was on the side of the road Now I understand that things can blow out windows and you have no control of that, but come on people, cover and tie down your load.

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I Need a Woman in the Office

September 6, 2014 — 

It’s time to get a woman for the office, I guess.

The guys who’ve been in there have made it a mess.

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Not a good time for a vacation

September 6, 2014 — 

Gaza is in flames. The Ukraine is in flames. Afghanistan is in flames, while our fearless president was on a two week vacation in Martha’s Vineyard, the playground of the very wealthy.

What a comment about the once most powerful country in the world. It will take America 100 years — under strong leadership — to regain its importance in the world. How sad that the young and the dumb can drag us down so easily.

Dick Phillips

Alta Sierra

Heron bothered no one

September 6, 2014 — 

I was heartsick and angry when I read Saturday’s article on the police raid of the Grass Valley transient camp which read, “Fish and Wildlife was called in after officers discovered a large dead bird suspended above the bed ... ; it was identified as a blue heron.”

I live next to an NID ditch and for nine years I have had the pleasure of periodically seeing a beautiful Blue Heron fishing in the ditch — bothering no one! This bird only wanted to be left alone to live his solitary, wild life that bothered no one. The heron this transient allegedly killed is most likely the same heron I’ve been enjoying all these years. Why would someone take the life of a beautiful, defenseless animal who bothered no one? Does being homeless translate into a total lack of humanity toward all living creatures, even those who bother no one?

Lisa Thane

Grass Valley

Capital Day should precede Labor Day

September 6, 2014 — 

Each Labor Day I am reminded of my brother who constantly advocated for the Saturday before Labor Day to be set aside as Capital Day. He thought such honor should be bestowed because without capital there would be no labor.

He had a financially poor background being 12th out of 13 children. He was a gifted student and won a scholarship to Harvard, served in World War II and fell in love with California. He, with two other men, founded a small bank in Arroyo Grande. It grew to a chain of 24 banks and he passed away as a very wealthy man. He funded football fields, gymnasium floors and many more charitable donations. He said that his success was due to the wonderful country he lived in, that one could start from a meager beginning and achieve success. Without capital and labor we would be a Communist state, so without capital there would be no labor.

Thus we should honor capital on the Saturday before Labor Day as both deserve this recognition.

Eileen Hawkes

Alta Sierra

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