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Letters to the Editor, Sept. 7 - 10

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‘Wholehearted’ Petlock support

EDITOR: It is a real pleasure to write this letter for Sonoma City Council candidate Chris Petlock. I officiated at Rachael and Chris’s wedding and served with Chris on the city’s Community Services and Environment Commission. I have known Chris for many years and his service to Sonoma and Sonoma Valley is much appreciated. His extensive knowledge is both professional and filled with community interest. I have proudly placed his lawn sign in front of our house. I wholehearted support Chris Petlock for Sonoma City Council.

Ken Brown

Sonoma

Encourage, but don’t pay for good grades

EDITOR: Educators (parents or teachers) sometimes show more appreciation for guys for what they do than for what they are. They praise them when they get excellent grades from college and reproach them when are low. However, we must value people by their human dignity, regardless of their academic or professional achievements. A father wants his son with virtues and defects because he is his son, his dear child.

It has been said many times that the family is the place where its members are loved more for who they are (children, parents, grandparents) than what they do. Personal confidence starts primarily when a person feels accepted within the family environment.

For this reason, when we have to encourage or praise a pupil, it is preferable to stress the effort achieved (related to being) than praise him for the result obtained (related to doing). It is important that the child feels better for having improved as a person than to do, have or receive something from adults.

In general, we should not reward the child for having complied with his duty or having achieved a success in any activity, but we must praise and show happiness.

A gift for good school grades is deforming because:

The child learns to behave and does homework not because it is good, but for the reward he receives, as if it was a pay. In addition, this stimulates selfishness because the child seeks his gift and does not consider the good that he can make to others in the future with his work. This procedure of paying for school grades with money or gifts is more oriented to train and domesticate children than educate and make them grow as people.

The child was disappointed when these awards are missing or are considered insufficient. In other words: the child will feel punished every time he does not receive the wanted rewards. The consequence for the child is that it is not worth the study or effort.

It is preferable to praise and encourage the effort made by the child than the results. If the pupil does not receive the attention of educators when he behaves well, he will look for it behaving badly.

Arturo Ramo García

Sonoma County

Gas tax pays for infrastructure

EDITOR: Proposition 6 has us heading in the wrong direction. Look around you and it is obvious that much of our infrastructure is in a shamble, including our transportation systems. We have not had any real state gas tax increases (not indexed for inflation) since the 1990s. In the meantime, we have experienced tremendous growth, aging, inflation and wear and tear on our facilities.

California has 1,600 bridges and overpasses that have deteriorated to the point of no longer being safe. Look at the bridge in Italy that recently collapsed partly due to poor maintenance.

Our roads closely resemble those in third world countries. You cannot get something for nothing! Not enough money to properly take care of them. We do not seem to think much if our gas prices increase several cents per gallon (which is what the gas tax costs), but for some reason, if it is not for the petroleum companies, it is not OK. The “no tax” people are convinced that the money is being used poorly. They are wrong! Proposition 69 assures that gas taxes are not diverted to non-transportation purposes. Vote “no” on Proposition 6.

Joe Lieber

Sonoma