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Letters to the Editor: Redirect police funding to community programs; Commentary criticizing liberals rebutted

Letters to the Editor: Redirect police funding to community programs; Commentary criticizing liberals rebutted

Redirect police funding to community programs

Defund the police. As a nation, and if you know history, police were a slave patrol that were to control blacks who they thought were out of reach or control of their masters.

A straight line can be drawn from the 1860s or before to George Floyd and to every seemingly subsequent killing. White people have seen undeniable truths and they are becoming collateral damage if they support ending unjustified black killings by police.

What is defunding the police? It is devoting more money to community and youth programs. It doesn’t mean giving 40% of the Santa Maria city budget to police and cutting the very programs we need to stabilize and grow any community. Did the City Council justify this? No. They sound similar to the Southern leadership of the 1960s, Southern law and order vs chaos as their theme.

Statistically police data show they are ill trained to handle mental health issues and issues best dealt with without an armed individual who is trained to shoot. Retrain the police to serve and protect not punish.

If the council holds on to the status quo then I hope we citizens will form a citizens council where we can discuss issues and solutions. Three minutes of input from the public per person and then lounging on their agenda. No imagination. Haven’t they watched anything on Zoom or other meetings where they hear from 1-2 people before proceeding and leave people waiting to speak for over two hours.

Take a look at your council members. Who are they really? We are the taxpayers who can make or break you with our future spending patterns. We are not stupid but angry at being ignored and worse. Defund the police.

Beth Sweetwater

Santa Maria

Commentary criticizing liberals rebutted

Reading through Mr. Bargenquast's commentary I had to go back to the beginning because I thought he was talking about Republicans. "Vicious war for power and control" has Republican written all over it. Republicans are gerrymandering to remain in the majority, purging hundreds of thousands off voter rolls, and making it difficult to vote by either exposing people to the COVID-19 virus by insisting on in-person voting or intentionally causing hours-long waits.

He states the liberals lied about the coronavirus. Seems President Trump was the one who said it would be gone in a few weeks because the heat would kill it. Well it is hot in the South and in Arizona and their cases are spiking. The only reason the pandemic is not worse is because some states, counties and cities have been proactive in protective measures.

He blames liberals for "packing patients into nursing homes." Nursing homes were already packed with those susceptible to the ills of the virus. The federal government is in charge of overseeing nursing homes and has done virtually nothing to mitigate the virus. FEMA sent nursing homes protective gear that was so useless that they had to make an apology.

Mr. Bargenquast brings up fraud using mail-in ballots. The only illegal ballot harvesting I recall is a Republican in North Carolina who illegally collected and tampered with so many ballots the election was overturned. I received a call from my own clerk-recorder when my signature changed due to carpal tunnel and had to prove who I was. So much for fraud.

Rick Tibben



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