Barbara Lee is a 'political risk taker'
Eye on the East Bay is often informative and entertaining. But in "Political Risk Taker?" it risks drifting into snarky cynicism.
To suggest that ending AIDS "may be slightly outside the control of (Barbara) Lee and/or politicians" is dead wrong. She's clearly already saved many lives by tackling this tough subject. She won the East Bay Stonewall Trailblazer Award for her continued effective focus on this issue that many politicians no longer prioritize.
Rep. Lee truly is a "political risk taker."
In the early years of AIDS, when others ignored it, she spoke up. Later, she helped convince President George W. Bush to significantly increase funding against AIDS. She championed attention to AIDS in Africa. Locally, HIV/AIDS heavily affects numerous women of color and their kids, so Lee works with churches and health organizations to promote research, prevention and care.
Last year, Lee worked to eliminate the discriminatory policy barring people with HIV from entering the United States.
While some are ignoring AIDS and cutting funding, Lee's been a national and international leader on fighting HIV/AIDS.
We're proud of Lee for using her power effectively and to focus attention on this very important subject.
Berkeley Worthington is a member of the Berkeley City Council
On Aug. 15, the Contra Costa County Board of Education denied a petition to renew West County Community High School's charter.
Clearly, the school has had growing pains. However, it is in the midst of a school district that has had below average academic performance for decades.
One would think the county board would be bending over backward to support and assist a school that might have the possibility to improve the educational opportunities within the West Contra Costa school district. But that wasn't the case.
The county board does an excellent job of representing the school district. It did what it has appeared to have done for many years, protect the school district structure.
One would think the elected board members would strive to look out for the students. But, unfortunately, students cannot vote.
Higher taxers will hurt job market
This is in response to Marion Mclntire's letter on Aug. 15. In her opinion, anybody who doesn't want to pay higher taxes is greedy and selfish. In my opinion, anybody who wants to pay higher taxes, I don't want them to run my business.
Forty-six percent of Americans pay no federal income tax (according to the Tax Policy Center). But I'll give McIntire the benefit of the doubt, that she works, pays taxes, and she just wants to pay more to help people. No worries. In 2014, everybody's taxes will skyrocket to pay for Obamacare.
Higher taxes do not create jobs. Jobs are a byproduct of people making money, that's reality. If you don't want people making money, there will be no jobs. Just look at the last four years.
Prop. 37 deserves to be approved
This is regarding your editorial on Proposition 37, the labeling of genetically modified foods.
You said "voters in Vermont and Connecticut have already rejected" this bill. Not true. It was not on any ballot. There was no vote. It was considered by both state legislatures but was pulled after threats of law suits from Monsanto.
You said Europe has a tolerance threshold of 1 percent to 5 percent for accidental presence of GMO food. Not true. The EU allows 0.9 percent tolerance for approved GMO products, and zero tolerance for unapproved GMO products -- a large and rapidly growing group of products. You didn't mention that China and India (49 countries total) require GMO labeling for food. They won't even import our tainted food.
You say GMO food does not "carry any risk to health." Who knows? There has been virtually no testing. Do you want to gamble with your health? We are the consumers and have a right to know what we are buying. If you research this, you will agree. Vote yes on Proposition 37.
Inform officials about death of relatives
It has come to my attention that names of deceased persons can be used by people who have no need to produce identification.
This has been rampant in some areas during the election period.
If you have a deceased loved one, call your local voter registration office and have their name removed from the voter list.