Hey men… no
EDITOR: I was born in 1956. I watched cartoons through the 1960s and the Pepe Le Pew episodes cycled through on a regular basis (“In the Company of Men,” Nov. 23). By the time I was 8 or 9, I started to see those episodes, where the female character is held captive while clearly uncomfortable and resisting, as not funny. As years have gone by, through my 30s, 40s, 50s and now 60s the remembered images and occasional re-encounters have struck me first as creepy, then as predatory, and now criminal because they clearly ignore the concept of: “No means no.”
Somehow an abhorrent historic artifact of the mid-20th century has become a deplorably common playbook for men with access to women younger than them and/or junior to them in the workplace hierarchy. Where are they learning that such things are their prerogative? It’s men who are going to have step up to change this culture – to find such actions both disgusting and liable to criminal action. Women have been trying, when they haven’t been silenced, to get this message through.
Bless Anita Hill, and all the #MeToo heroines and heroes, for their bravery to face and stand up to the intimidation that intrinsic to this abuse. No means no!
The Rev. L.A. King
EDITOR: Permit me to put on those blue, latex gloves everyone uses these days, from cops to food handlers, and scratch letter-writer George Thompson’s puzzled head (“Has Putin Gotten to the Sonoma City Council?” Nov. 23).
The reason the Sonoma City Council let’s people other than city residents speak at council meetings is that Valley people, from the Springs to Glen Ellen and points south and north regularly use the city’s businesses, professionals and services, as well as its many facilities, nonprofits and otherwise. We “outsiders” support the hospital through use and parcel taxes, the Community Center, the Vets Building and the cemetery to name only a few beneficiaries.
Another reason we get a voice is that a significant number of people who work in the city live just outside it. Should they have no voice? How about the high school kids and their families outside Sonoma’s borders? No voice?
How long do you think Sonoma businesses would last, George, without our labor and money?
In short, the city welcomes our trade and our civic participation and it should damn well entertain our voices on city matters.
Don’t forget historic landmarks
EDITOR: Bill Lynch’s article (“Places in My Sonoma Heart,” Nov. 21) offered a great number of local historical landmarks and institutions that are special treasures to this community that we could have lost forever in the fires.
He asked what is on our lists. I’d like to add a few: the Depot Park Museum and Marcy house, both on First Street West; the Poppe building (now the Parmelee building) on the Plaza; the former Old City Bakery building on First Street East - tucked back in the courtyard; the Maysonnave House, across from Vintage House; and the Blue Wing Inn on East Spain Street.
These structures are just another group of many storied buildings that reflect the important history of Sonoma.
Thanks Bill, for offering your list and for pointing out how the unthinkable could have happened were it not for all the emergency responders and residents who saved Sonoma.