Preserve education by keeping tenure
Regarding “How to improve education, housing” (Open Forum, Feb. 5): In the midst of strikes, low pay and teacher shortages, the suggestion of also removing job security for teachers is ludicrous.
Do we need yet another reason for young people to steer clear of careers in K-12 education? Only teacher-bashing logic would conclude that removing the possibility of tenure would improve education in California during our current crisis!
Paul Giganti, Albany
Love the design
Regarding “This flag will dance in the wind” (Open Forum, Feb. 4): I love Jeffrey Burke Whitten’s submission for California’s flag! Just the colorful graphic caught my eye before I knew what it represented.
Then I read the article. The description, the design, the colors ... I can see it dancing in the wind. It nearly dances right off the page. Let’s adopt it now!
Sandra Torma, Oakland
Not the biggest fan
Regarding “This flag will dance in the wind”: The flag caught my eye before I read the piece by Jeffrey Burke Whitten. I was awaiting a thought about Google Maps’ new logo ... oops, a new flag for San Francisco?! These common primary and secondary colors are maybe too reminiscent of the omnipresence of tech in our fair city. Also curious that the main point of the star doesn’t point left ... how about up? Too Star Treky? How about another idea we can wrap ourselves in?
Chris Shields, San Francisco
Focus on disasters
First, it was the ridiculous obsession with nicknames for San Francisco (50 years in L.A. and I have only heard one term, and that’s “Frisco.” Just deal with it.), and now this made up Make America Great Again/baseball cap controversy.
Never mind the thousands of homeless in the streets, the open drug use and property crimes, Pacific Gas and Electric Co.’s never-ending problems, tall buildings leaning precariously, multimilliondollar transit stations idling like a wasteland and, thanks to Uber, Lyft and the late Mayor Ed Lee, traffic is at near gridlock most days. Could we possibly just drop the hat nonsense and perhaps try and solve one of these ongoing disasters?
Marty Foster, San Francisco
In response to “Large crowd blasts plans for Mission development” (Feb. 8): There should be no mystery who’s really to blame for today’s crippling shortage of housing. The NIMBYs and antidevelopment naysayers have found San Francisco a natural habitat for their persistent cry of not here, blocking one housing development after another, turning too many debates on housing in San Francisco from how much housing do we need to how little housing can we get away with. These activists are trapped in the mistaken zerosum game that building more of one type of housing means building less of another, and that restricting housing development on political grounds is cost-free. It’s anything but free. It helps create the housing shortage that is driving our housing crisis.
They fixate on proposals that fall short of a perfect version of San Francisco housing, killing good proposals that might alleviate the housing shortage. This is how the voters have ordained it and will only change when voters start making different political decisions. Until then, when it comes to housing, we have met the enemy, and he is us.
Frank Sullivan, San Francisco
Regarding “Big rigs bypass smog-check law” (Open Forum, Feb. 5): I was extremely vexed reading the article about big rigs not having to bother with smog laws. Here’s why: I run a small business and require a small truck and a van to do so.
Last year, I had to let my van get towed away because I couldn’t get it to pass smog, even though it ran great. Then I had to spend about $700 on my little pickup to get it to pass smog. After the work was done, I was told by my mechanic to drive 30 miles at 50 mph to “set the sensors.” My little business has suffered greatly as a result.
Roy Dieckman, San Francisco
Regarding “It’s not just about RV parking” (Editorial, Feb. 7): While creating parking spaces and services for people living in RVs is a worthy objective, the real challenge is to change the attitudes of people who don’t live in them. Their complaints about excessive noise, leaking fluids, and the loss of parking spaces caused by the occupants of these RVs is, to be quite honest, driven by prejudice against anyone who might adversely affect their property values.
Residents in such areas should remember this phrase the next time they consider complaining about those who are living in RVs on their streets: “There but for the grace of God go I.”
Carolyn Crawford, San Francisco