Cartoon makes fun of intelligence of elderly

You recently published a cartoon in the editorial page that featured three old people saying ridiculous things and looking terrible.

The caption said "bucket lists," which refers to a list of all the things one wants to accomplish in life.

The joke isn't about bucket lists, but about how ugly and stupid old people are. Why you consider such cartoons worthy of publication is beyond my comprehension.

I leave you with a quote from Woody Guthrie; though he's talking about songs, it can easily be applied to your editorial style:

"I hate a song that makes you think you were born to lose ... no good for nothing because you're either too old or too young or too fat or too slim ... songs that run you down ... because of your bad luck or hard traveling. I'm out to fight those kinds of songs to my very last breath of air and my last drop of blood. I am out to sing the songs that will prove to you that this is your world ... songs that make you take pride in yourself and in your work."

Curtis V. Manning

Berkeley

Desalination is feasible for Southern California

In a recent letter to the editor, Betty and Willis Shotwell raised the most critical element missing in new efforts to suck fresh water from the Sacramento River and San Francisco Bay -- desalination.


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Perth, Australia, is now heavily dependent on desalination, as are more communities worldwide. Los Angeles and other heavily populated areas of Southern California have a virtually infinite supply of water on their doorstep. Why has there been no effort to press for desalination?

Environmental groups are paralyzed by the fact that while desalination can eliminate the need to further degrade overcharged water sources, desalination is also energy-intensive. In other words, organizations such as the Sierra Club are reluctant to support a technology whose activation may encourage new electric generation, perhaps based on natural gas.

But that's irrelevant here. Southern California has as much sunshine as it has ocean. With thousands of acres of wasteland available for solar panels, Southern California can generate all the power it needs to make its own fresh water and call off renewed efforts to send our water south.

Jack F. Fallin

Walnut Creek

It is phony hate group attacking Armstrong

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency is another agency that should not have any authority over American sports or anything at all.

Like most government agencies or quasi-government agencies, it exists only for its management and staff to have an overpaid job with high salary, big benefits, easy working conditions and extravagant pensions.

We see this in our city, county and state agencies. The only way the anti-doping agency can exist is by creating problems. Armstrong was tested more than 100 times. Clean every time. It is unfair for an agency to attack you countless times. What about double jeopardy? How can this lying agency have so much power to attack him countless times and come up with a phony judgment and give him cruel and unusual punishment? Hasn't this phony hate group heard of the Eighth Amendment?

Sidney Steinberg

Berkeley

Overdevelopment in Walnut Creek

As someone who actually lives and walks near downtown Walnut Creek, I'm very concerned about the excessive building of apartment complexes awaiting us, at the BART station, at the end of Almond and Newell. Someone wrote in an article, "Well, everyone wants to live in downtown Walnut Creek." Does that mean for residents who have lived here, we'll just have to grin and bear it when we're overcrowded like sardines?

I don't have a car, and walking in the downtown area, road rage is a daily occurrence. I cringe thinking how the downtown area is going to be with more people coming into a small area.

I'm curious to know how many people making decisions live in the downtown area? Does anyone really care what is happening with overcrowding in this area?

Dorrit Takach

Walnut Creek

MLB should require helmets for pitchers

The head injury that felled Oakland A's pitcher Brandon McCarthy, who was hit by a line drive Sept. 6, brings to mind the tragedies of Cleveland Indians star pitcher Herb Score and shortstop Ray Chapman.

Score was hit by a line drive off the bat of Yankees Gil McDougal, which impaired his vision. Chapman was killed by a fastball from Carl Mays.

Helmets may have averted these and McCarthy's injuries. Organized baseball should require pitchers to wear helmets.

Donald Dubin

Oakland