Democratic Party's supermajority is awful

The Democratic Party supermajority in our state Legislature will be an absolute disaster.

The Democrats have already devastated our state by doing everything the big-money government union employees have wanted -- big salaries, outrageous benefits and working conditions, and early and grandiose pensions that have crippled each of our 58 counties, our cities and our struggling state.

Why did we allow these violent big-money union bullies to do this damage? We voted for Democrats.

The powerful government unions take money from all government union employees and elect senators, assembly members, supervisors and city council members who give the unions billions of dollars.

Union members vote to approve their contracts, but we taxpayers cannot vote for these outrageous contracts. We have hundreds of state agencies and thousands of county and city agencies full of money-grubbing government employees who have hurt our wonderful state. They are the ruling class.

Proposition 32 could have helped us a little, but the union liars convinced the voters to vote it down.

One good thing: The rich union members spend their money, buy cars and help create low-wage jobs at retail markets and stores.

Sidney Steinberg

Berkeley

Killing of mountain lion cubs was senseless

I was deeply disturbed, angry and ashamed to be a part of the human race after reading about the senseless killing of two 9-month-old mountain lion cubs in Half Moon Bay.

They were babies; they could have and should have been protected and saved. There are a number of knowledgeable and qualified people around capable of handling the situation properly.

I am appalled the California Department of Fish and Game people are not on that list. The warden who made this decision needs to have his ability to make decisions permanently revoked.

It doesn't matter how much technology we have or how advanced we think we are, the cruel way we treat one another and the reckless devastation we've inflicted on every other living thing on the planet seems to indicate we still are, and probably always will be, barbarians.

Nick Jury

Clayton

Leave the Bible out of oath ceremony

When President Barack Obama is inaugurated Jan. 20, it's virtually certain that he will begin to dishonor the Constitution he is solemnly swearing to uphold within the first few minutes of his second term.

Article VI unequivocally states that "no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States."

The presidential oath of office is explicitly spelled out in Article II, Section 1, and ends, "and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States." The framers deliberately omitted any religious requirements.

The use of a Bible in inaugurations is clearly unconstitutional. He is not swearing to uphold any religious scriptures. Placing his hand on a copy of the Constitution would be more appropriate.

Over the years, Christian zealots have intruded Bibles and God oaths into what should be a purely secular ceremony. They don't belong there. Obama will kowtow to religious traditions because he lacks the courage to challenge these long-standing unconstitutional practices.

Burt Bogardus

Danville

Pensions should be same as rest of us

I support firefighters and police compensation packages for any job-related disabilities and loss of life.

On the other hand, they should not be different from me in retirement benefits. I am not retiring at 50 (or 53) after 30 years of work with 90 percent of my salary.

I am trying to spend less and save more to balance my retirement. I expect the same from state or government pensioners. There are more than enough qualified candidates who will accept lower paid firefighter or police job and benefit packages.

Art Turhal

San Ramon

Pleasant Hill 'Dome' theater will be missed

I recently read that the owner of CineArts wants to tear it down and build a sporting goods store where "Dome" movie theater is presently located.

Councilman David Durant said, "I think it's a sacrifice we need to make for the overall benefit of the community." What? Closing the only theater that shows arthouse films this side of Berkeley to put in yet another sporting goods store? That is what we need in Pleasant Hill?

Ridiculous. I patronize the Dome two to three times a month and will miss it dearly.

C. John Crawford

Pleasant Hill