Won't willingly cede my right to privacy
This is regarding the March 6 guest commentary, "Surprised by Oakland City Council's change of course on DAC."
Regarding the author's heartfelt plea for justice, please accept my condolences for her loss. I have imaged how I would feel if one of my children were killed, and still believe that her son's right to justice does not trump my right to privacy.
The IRS scandal, the NSA scandals and others prove our government's inability to control itself, so I do not willingly cede one iota of my privacy, civil rights or freedom. Not one.
The author believes that if one has nothing to hide then one has nothing to fear. This is naive and presupposes we should all strip naked on demand because we have nothing to hide. I categorically reject this argument and I refuse any requirement to prove my innocence.
I have sympathy for her pain, but that does not give her the moral high ground to require that I relinquish my civil rights. Oakland is a violent city and would be better off dealing directly with the small number of violent criminals rather than treating everyone as a potential criminal.
A humble beginning to Hayward tradition
Last Tuesday, at Hayward's City Hall Plaza, a tradition was started. Organized by Hayward City Councilman Francisco Zermeno, a celebration was held for Hayward's 138th birthday. Two organizations -- the Hayward Area History Association and the Save the H Project -- had tables to share their information.
Hayward history was discussed, Hayward poetry was read, and passers-by were invited to come talk about their city and have a piece of birthday cake from a Hayward bakery.
It was a small celebration that, hopefully, will grow year after year. Go Hayward.
Stemming obesity is a problem for us all
The focus on teen obesity is a recurring topic, and one that should hit home not only with many in Oakland but all over the country.
According to the CDC, "Childhood obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents in the past 30 years." These statics should sadden the average American but many times they don't, and with the topic being shadowed by hopes of change and talk of action, our society is spiraling into a terrifying future.
With no action being taken, the obese teens of this generation will turn into the obese adults of the next, raising children with the same unhealthy lifestyles.
It starts at home and diffuses into the society. Everyone needs to play a bigger role in staying aware and being an advocate of healthier lifestyles. Everyone needs to stand up and be a leading force in creating a healthier country.
"A dream doesn't become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work," Colin Powell said.
The Tuskegee Airmen story forgot a hero
The March 10 article on the Tuskegee Airmen quite rightly praised their dedication, ability and bravery.
A little-known part of this story was played by Noel Parrish, their commanding officer. Parrish was a good ol' boy raised in Alabama who received his bachelor's degree from Rice in 1928, joined the Army and attained his flier's wings before the Air Force was recognized as such.
He was assigned to his post and was convinced that the Tuskegee cadets were equally as capable of flying as anyone.
Despite the Army's high command, he prevailed and facilitated the recognition of the group that became the Tuskegee Airmen. The airmen quite rightly held him in high regard. No mention was made of him in the March 10 article.