Letters to the Editor, Nov. 2

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Grieved for brothers and sisters in faith

EDITOR: First Congregational Church Sonoma condemns the violence that took the lives of nearly a dozen innocent people this past week in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania. We are grieved that our brothers and sisters in faith were terrorized in their house of worship. We stand for an end to expressions of hatred toward any group of people.

Our hearts ache alongside members of our Jewish community who are left feeling a sense of vulnerability and we commit to accompanying them in this grief.

May God turn our weeping into compassion and our grief into action.

Rev. Curran Reichert

Pastor First Congregational Church


Republicans, you’re our only hope…

EDITOR: To all my dear GOP friends and to all the other GOP followers that I don’t know.

On Saturday I woke up to the news of yet another carnage. This time in a synagogue. The last couple of days the news has been full of details of pipe bombs arriving at prominent Democrats. The week before that – oh, who knows, it seems so long ago in this hate-filled time.

I know you, some of you are very dear friends. Most of you amaze me with your generosity in times of need. You are really good people. I was brought up a social democrat, so that is where my leanings are. Your parents probably voted GOP and that is the beliefs you were brought up with.

Some of you are religious and attend worship. I do not have any religious beliefs, but I strongly believe in the so-called religious guidelines. I am sure we have all taught our children: You do not lie. You do not steal. Treat everybody the way you want to be treated. If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all (actually, I think the last one was from a Disney film and, in my case, the most difficult rule to live by). So this is where I need your help understanding what is going on. You have chosen a leader who lies numerous times daily to the country. He has stolen tons of money from his suppliers. He only treats dictators with respect and, as for speaking nicely about people, forget it. The hate he spews out at his rallies to his adoring fans is frightening and we see the results of it in situations like the terrible shooting in Pittsburgh. Does it not bother you?

You are the ones who can help this situation. First of all you have to admit that you made a terrible mistake in electing Trump. That is always difficult. You buy a new car, it is awful. But when people ask you about it, you are most likely to tell them it is great and anyway it gets you there - so like Trump it does some things you like. How many people come back from vacation and admit it was a disaster. Vacations always seem to be amazing - same thing there are always some things you liked about it. OK, so let’s all have a kumbaya, hug and admit it was a mistake, that the things you like aren’t worth it because you no longer want to be complicit in the damage he is doing to our nation. Put pressure on him and his cronies who only seem to care about a paycheck instead of moral values.

I actually don’t mind if we have a Democratic or Republican government. We’ve all survived both in the past. I just long for civility, ethical behavior and for America to have a high standing in the world.

Jette Franks


Keep Sonoma politics local

The City of Sonoma’s website has posted the first pre-election campaign finance statements for the seven individuals running for Sonoma City Council. It is interesting that Rachel Hundley reported raising over $14,000 while the remaining six candidates had a little over $19,000 combined. In other words, over 42 percent of the monies raised were for one candidate.

Hundley reported contributions from Jim Wood running for State Assembly (whose campaign is being managed by Hundley’s husband), from State Senator Bill Dodd’s campaign, State Senator Mike McGuire’s campaign, and Congressman Mike Thompson’s campaign (for whom Hundley’s husband was a field representative for over two years).

Of her 46 contributions from named individuals, 21 of them were outside Sonoma, with five from six other states (including D.C.). By comparison none of the other candidates reported campaign contributions from out-of-city politicians nor any contributions from out of state.

Shouldn’t we be electing city officials who will not be beholden to professional politicians who have no involvement in Sonoma daily city life, or to out-of-staters whose motives are unclear?

Is Hundley trying to buy the election rather than run on the record of the city council over the last four years where issues such as traffic, parking, housing, cannabis, tasting rooms, homelessness, etc. all were “kicked down the road” rather than dealt with judiciously? If these issues have not been solved in the past four years, why should we believe the incumbents will address them over the next four years if reelected?

Bill Jasper


Prop. 6 shenanigans a bad ‘sign’

EDITOR: I would like for you to know the facts. Here is what is happening in Sonoma.

Opponents of Proposition 6, the repeal of the 2017 gas-tax increase, are taking down all the “Yes on Six” signs that I put up with permission and are taking my signs down on my own private property and replacing them with “No on Six” signs. They have taken down over 50 signs.

One must wonder why the unions would donate over $10 million of poor laborers dues to defeat Prop. 6. What is it in dollar-wise to defeat Prop. 6? What have they been promised by Sacramento to defeat Prop. 6?

The real facts are that we have the worst roads in the nation and the highest gas taxes in the nation. Reason for this is that Sacramento is only spending 20 percent of dollars collected from the gas tax on roads and the other 80 percent goes to general fund and god only knows where that money went. (During these past years all large construction/engineering companies have had more work than they could handle.)

When this finally caught up with Sacramento, they passed a 12-cents-a-gallon hike and 20 cents diesel hike and raised all the DMV fees without a vote of the people.

Thanks to Carl DeMaio, who started the process of putting Prop. 6 on the ballot by getting over 1 million signatures and got Prop. 6 on the ballot. Sacramento has raised over $40 million to defeat Prop. 6. Are the unions and Sacramento afraid they may be exposed to something they may have done wrong in the previous years?

The only way the 2017 gas-tax increase can be repealed is by word-of-mouth telling the real facts as stated above and spreading the word to all. The old saying, “money talks and BS walks is the truth as shown by the false ads on TV. I think first responders did a fine job during the fires and were able to get to the fires on a very timely matter. I also cannot understand why over 300 bridges are in danger and road work will cease if Prop. 6 wins.

Construction companies have been kept busy prior to the gas tax increase and DMV fees hike, with only 20 percent collected spent on roads. So if they get the 80 percent that has been taken from the transportation funds to be spent on roads we will have the best roads in the nation.

Jerry Marino


Experience matters

EDITOR: The letter from Perri Ellis Paniagua (“Mayor ‘Incoherent and Confused,’” Oct. 26) does not describe the Madolyn Agrimonti that we know.

Madolyn is a dedicated, serious advocate for the residents of Sonoma. Her support of the community has included leadership positions in the Sonoma Valley Woman’s Club and its development foundation, the Sonoma Community Center, the Sonoma Valley Hospital Foundation and Sonoma Splash. In addition to her City Council duties, Madolyn is currently on the board of the Sonoma County Transportation Authority, which uniquely positions her to tackle some of our City’s most vexing transportation, traffic and parking problems.

Madolyn’s background and experience in politics, and her tireless commitment to this community, has given her an unparalleled ability to marshal and focus critical resources to key areas of need. As Mayor of Sonoma over the past year, Madolyn has achieved tangible results such as advocating directly to the County Board of Supervisors to successfully reestablish funding for Sonoma Overnight Support’s winter homeless shelter, funding that had previously been denied.

Experience matters. Experience coupled with commitment and dedication is rare. Now, more than ever, we need Madolyn Agrimonti’s leadership on the City Council.

Mary and Paul Favaro


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