I just wanted to express my interest and appreciation in the cause behind Por Vida ("Wear It for Life," May 7). I think this young woman, Emily Chavez, is one of the few youth of this generation who make it a priority to stay informed. I would love to hear more about this organization.
Guarding public safety
A very thoughtful article, and heartbreaking ("For the Record," Open Mic, April 30). The body of law rationalizing police violence and murder must be changed. Every killing by police, it seems, is because the police are afraid for their lives. I submit that if their job is so terrifying, even though it's listed low on the list of dangerous jobs, that they seek other employment. Our communities, and especially our families, can't afford and should not tolerate this casual violence. When we see such behavior in other countries, the violent ones are characterized as criminal government thugs. Here, for some reason, the same violent types are labeled as "trained professional public safety officers."
Most citizens just aren't very violent and need to rely on civil rights suits and the initiative process. We need very public, punishing lawsuits and legislation to regain control of rogue government officials and employees. Police gunning down people, including children, is not acceptable. The use of the tired old defense that they were "afraid for their lives" is an insult. We want educated, ethical people to work in the public safety role, not semiliterate thugs.
When police misconduct has risen to the level of shooting and killing women and children, we can be sure this is the tip of the iceberg. For some years now, law enforcement has been living and promulgating a culture of violence and domination without regard for civil rights. Lying and false pretense have become the norm and are justified in the name of police work.
It is time for a policy of zero tolerance for any police improprieties, however slight, with serious economic consequences to their employers. Blaming the cops for doing what they have been taught is ridiculous; the cities and counties who have coddled and condoned this violent culture are to blame.
A successful lawsuit for every infraction would bring these evil trends to a screeching halt.
I applaud the editor's powerful and artful response to the autopsy report of young Jeremiah Chass, killed by two Sonoma County sheriffs as he was in the midst of a crisis in his parents' vehicle. Through the power of detail, Gretchen Giles turns a cold and clinical description of the taking of a human life into harrowing poetry.
Cans & Bands
The Redwood Empire Food Bank thanks The Bohemian for sponsoring Petaluma Mystic Theatre's "Battle of the Bands Food Drive." This phenomenal effort, in the capable and inspired hands of the Mystic's Shennon O'Donnell, brings together Sonoma County's best local musical talent for a worthy cause. The Mystic's goal is to collect 5,000 cans of food for the REFB. Come out to the Mystic Theatre every Sunday in May, enjoy hot local talent and help feed the over 50,000 local people who depend on the REFB for basic nutritious food every month.
Food Drive and Event Coordinator, Redwood Empire Food Bank
Dept. of Corrections and Come-ons
Please know that Jewel Mathieson and Ken Brown were not, as reported in these pages ("It's High Time," April 30), the driving force behind establishing a medical marijuana dispensary in Sonoma; one Dona Ruth Frank of Creekside Medicinal Organics, LLC, takes that mantle. We apologize for the error.
Back to Us Food writers, put down that fork and pick up that mouse! We need you. We're beginning to suspect that no one wants to read as much about likker as we evidently want to print about likker, but food-writing freelancers are needed, necessary and in woefully short supply.
Please send a short, graceful note to firstname.lastname@example.org introducing yourself and explaining why you should be able to chew not only on, but for, the Bohemian. Clips, links and other past expressions of the written word that reflect kindly upon your talents are hugely welcomed.
Drunk 'n' hungry
Send a letter to the editor about this story.