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Columbus in doghouse?

History is history. Columbus discovered the new world in 1492.

Now in the name of political correctness, I suppose, all references to Columbus in Los Angeles will have to be eliminated.

So, burn all the history books, as did Hitler in Germany in the name of the Third Reich's policies, so why not here?

Probably the only city anywhere to eliminate all references to Columbus.

David W. K. Godrich

Santa Maria


PR effort excludes dangers of oil activities

I have been targeted. You have been targeted. The story-tellers are revving up expensive public relations shops. The companies paying the tab have one simple aim — to grow their quarterly corporate profits. They are called Aera, ERG, PCEC and PetroRock.

This sophisticated PR endeavor is for the benefit of their stockholders and upper management. But is it good for us?

Millions of dollars are budgeted for this multi-media sales effort to misinform the public. But plans to greatly expand risky oil activities here are not in our best interest.They want our county supervisors to permit 750 more wells between Santa Maria and Los Alamos. These would not be conventional oil wells. The extreme techniques use steam and large quantities of toxic and cancer-causing chemicals.

Experts say this activity may cause serious harm to our health, and to the viability of our agricultural and tourism-based economy. This has already happened elsewhere in the U.S. And what do we do when our drinking water in Santa Maria and Los Alamos becomes contaminated?

Let’s keep in mind that standard procedure for these extreme oil extraction techniques includes injection underground of massive amounts of poisonous substances. There’s been a history of leaks and spills, many of which are not even reported. These corporations have a knack for escaping financial responsibility by declaring bankruptcy. Then we, the taxpayers, are left with the cleanup bill.

A UCSB economic forecast cleverly exaggerates the positive contributions of the oil industry. And it ignores the real, and the potential, substantial costs to our county’s finances, and to our health and safety. We need jobs that don’t threaten existing workers or harm our families’ health. Let our county supervisors know that we care most about these things.

Seth Steiner

Los Alamos

What happened to California education?

In the 1980's the California educators incorporated into the curriculum "inventive spelling."

Teachers received additional money for their classroom by teaching this nonsense. Spelling is an absolute - the word is spelled correctly, or incorrectly.

You have heard "if it isn't broken, don't fix it." Teaching phonics was a proven method for teaching reading. California schools stopped teaching phonics.

Now we have Common Core.  Mathematics is also an absolute. All answers are absolutely right or wrong. Common Core is not interested in the right answer, but wants to find out how the student arrived at their answer.

Conclusion: Romans 1:22 "Professing to be wise, they became fools."

Joann Williams

Santa Maria