Union Democrat staff

Dollar General bad for your health

To the Editor:

The headlines read: “New Report Finds 81 percent of Dollar Store Products Tested Contain One or More Hazardous Chemicals Linked to Learning Disabilities, Cancer & Other Serious Illnesses, Says Campaign for Healthier Solutions,” a nationwide group of 100 health, community and environmental justice organizations working to protect our health.

Locally, Scott Anderson published important data about Dollar General targeting economically depressed communities when it sniffs around for lucrative locations. Are we wise to send what money those on “corporate welfare” have left us to spend out of the country, to reward unregulated industries?

Besides the obvious misfit between the ambience of historic Columbia State Historic Park and a Dollar General store, these numbers speak to our own and our children’s health and well-being. Few county officials appear concerned.

We vote with our pocketbooks every day. For whom do you vote?

Dr. Diane Magid


Support home rule

To the Editor:

At the last Calaveras County Board of Supervisors meeting there was discussion of two items which could have a profound negative effect on the taxpayer and property owner. Both involve a serious encroachment by state and federal government into our local affairs.

The first is the Council of Government-controlled government bus system which is designed to operate at a 90 percent loss. Although the loss is covered by the state and federal governments, it is still paid for by the taxpayers. A better idea would be to allow the private sector to run transportation that pays for itself. This is already occurring in the case of Uber, the Internet-based system whereby people help each other. There is a study by the CATO Institute providing many positive ideas. (Search: CATO Fixing Transit)

The second issue discussed at the meeting was obtaining money from HUD. This could be very damaging to local control of the land-use planning process.

Recently, the federal government imposed new rules requiring grant recipients to adopt Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) regulations. This is apparently a federal takeover of local land-use planning. (Search: AFFH Stanley Kurtz)

Perhaps now is the time to encourage our Supervisors to support home rule and protect the public against hurtful encroachments of the state and federal governments. It would be good for Supervisors to request that staff identify these issues prior to the board meetings.

Al Segalla


State of Jefferson a hoax

To the Editor:

I promised myself I would ignore this because it ain’t ever gonna happen. The secession of “21 Oregon and California counties” is a teabagger hoax.

But it does point out a threat to Americans. This is evidenced once again as it is being played out in Southern Oregon (Northern Jefferson). Anti-American anarchists, emboldened by takeovers in Nevada and now Oregon, are again armed and are threatening to kill innocent people.

Their problem — they do not like to conform to our laws and Constitution. Their solution — ignore our elections and ignore our courts.

Mr. Banks (It’s time for the State of Jefferson, Jan. 21, 2016) is the master manipulator, jumbling facts to rile “the base.” He complains there is a “lack of representation.” Well, there is not.

Representation is based upon population. If you just took Congress — their secession would produce the 36th most populace state — giving jefferson state 3 U.S. Congressional seats and leaving California with 50 and their state with less representation than they now have.

The finances — (Supporters) are either con artists or morons. Take Tuolumne County — need a new jail; new courthouse; new road? You get the idea. Most of the 21 counties are “debtor counties,” basically “third world countries” without the support of the rest of California and Oregon.

Simply put, since the passage of the 14th Amendment in 1868, there is no way to “opt out,” except through revolution or through consent of the States.

The last state to “split” was West Virginia in 1863 as they desired to stay with the Union as Virginia went with the Confederacy.

Now, can America stand up to the anarchists in Oregon and in Nevada? We better take a stand now because these people are domestic terrorists — holding America hostage.

Domenic Torchia