Union Democrat staff

Yes on Prop. 32

To the Editor,

Local polls finding that respondents would not support the Sonora or Summerville High school bond measures, caused me to write.

Back in 2000, I helped qualify a petition that made it onto the November ballot that year, because I found in 1996 California School system ranked 49th and had over 800 "administrators" in Sacramento salaried over $100,000 a year.

That 2000 petition was Proposition 38 for school vouchers, allowing children in unsafe schools to be enrolled out of district at another school.

I watched the California Teachers Association (CTA) spend $26,366,491 to defeat it. The California Fair Political Practices Commission, a government agency, issued a report in March 2010 saying that the CTA had spent $211.8 million on political campaigns in California in the ten-year period beginning on January 1, 2000 and ending on December 31, 2009!

How much has CTA spent since 1876?

That money was from union dues and should have gone for benefits, and very few union members have much of a say of where their dues go politically; and this union has too much political power and has done too little to help the schools and our children.

Before those who support more money for schools to be taken from us I would suggest you ask the CTA for the money the schools need. Obviously the CTA has more than enough, and what they have done with it sure doesn't seem to help the children's education!

Maybe that's why Prop. 32 made it on this November's ballot, prohibiting unions from using dues politically unless permitted by union members; rightfully giving union members a say where their money goes.

Barry F. Wilson


The rich and poor

To the Editor,

A popular conception today is, "The reason so many people are poor is because the rich have so much." Once upon a time I believed there some validity to this argument.

For several years I worked for a firm in clown-town Berkeley. Every day, I saw many street people and beggars on Shattuck Avenue. I helped when I could, but of course I couldn't give them all money.

None of them owned automobiles while up in the hills were many big, beautiful homes with numerous new and late model vehicles parked in the driveways.

Was it fair that the wealthy all had multiple cars and trucks while the poor people down below couldn't even have one?

Then one day a light came on! Just a few blocks down the street was auto row with dozens of new cars and trucks just waiting to be bought, the discrepancy between rich and poor had the availability of goods and services. It has everything to do with decisions people make with their lives.

I know that this letter will infuriate certain people but don't expect a retraction from me. Truth is truth whether it is accepted for now.

David Holcomb


Encourage voting

To the Editor,

All my life, I have heard the mantra, "Vote, or you deserve what you get!"

So now, in 2012, 50 years after the Civil Rights Act assuring us that we are all equal, why have several states put restrictive measures on everyone's right to vote?

In Ohio, voting hours have been cut. Don't we all remember the long lines in Ohio in 2008, with some people just finally giving up and going home?

Pennsylvania is going to require an I.D. card, making it difficult for seniors, people living in inner cities and thousands of university students who have been told their student I.D. cards won't be acceptable.

After the state legislature passed this despicable measure, one legislative member gleefully shouted, "We have just made Mitt Romney President of the United States!"

Then there's Florida where thousands have been stricken from the voter rolls. One 92 year-old man received a letter telling him he was no longer eligible, even though he had voted in every election since he was of voting age.

The people responsible for these outrages should not be allowed to get away with it. People should be encouraged to get to the polls - not stay away.

Sue Glass