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talkback...

Worthless bunnies

As a native San Franciscan and a regular reader of the Bay Guardian for many years, I take great offense to your publication of extremist propaganda by the Global Bunny Resistance Network ["Bunnies Unite!," 1/30/02].

What begins as a pseudoscientific and sanctimonious chastisement of human attitudes toward bunny rabbits ends as a misanthropic series of viable threats by an organization that will go to any length to achieve its effect. This is another fanatical group that promotes a breakdown in the communal order.

The network's "Supreme Field Marshall," Mr. Infante, claims that bunnies have a politically correct social structure. In fact, bunnies have in all history completely failed to develop any complexity in their social structure, let alone any semblance of a civilization worthy of providing historical lessons or summer tour guides. Bunnies hop. Bunnies have sex. They are a promiscuous lot, and that is all.

Even if some of your more nihilistic readers were to accept the network's abominable species-specific preferences, your publication would still be at fault for allowing the network to promote sex as a method for world domination and to advertise a return to patriarchal phallicism.

If bunnies had complaints, they would have said something. Not a whimper, or whatever they do. Bunnies are content, but Mr. Infante and his group are not. That's their problem. The Bay Guardian should not promote these lagomorphiliac agitators.
James "Efudd" Brown Naturalist-hunter
San Francisco

Phone bills and prisoners

Thank you for your informative piece on the high price of phone calls from jails ["Dialing for Dollars," 2/13/02]. To me it is clear that the families of inmates – who for the most part can least afford it – are being charged very high rates to keep in touch with their family members. Studies have been done which demonstrated that inmates who are able to keep in touch with their families are the least likely to end up in jail once again. Yet, as your interviews with family members show, many families have had to either lose their phone service due to high phone bills or else to refuse collect calls from friends and/or family inside the prison system.
Jeanne V. Diller Oakland

Britt the fighter

I was not surprised to read that Mark Leno is not willing to take the battle for transgender rights to Sacramento ["Endorsements," 2/6/02]. When the Harvey Milk Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Democratic Club invited both Britt and Leno to present for our endorsement, Leno unequivocally admitted that he would not fight battles he knew he would lose. Fortunately for San Franciscans, we have a better choice in Harry Britt. Britt forwarded issues like rent control, comparable worth, and domestic partner benefits for years before he carried them to victory, and he will do the same on issues like transgender benefits, tenant rights, and political reform in Sacramento. Britt knows that beginning the dialogue is part of educating, that educating is necessary to changing people's minds, and that if you don't show up for the fight, you will never win.
Debra Walker president, Harvey Milk Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Democratic Club San Francisco

Sick of the machine

Your story on Kimiko Burton goes far in explaining why many San Franciscans, of all political stripes, support Jeff Adachi ["Kimiko's Burden," 1/30/02]. I would consider myself a conservative Democrat who was appalled by the results in last year's district elections; and yet I am so tired of the Burton-Brown political machine that I would probably support Ammiano or any of the "leftist" candidates for mayor, if they were to run against a Willie Brown appointee. The city is sick and tired of Brown and his hand-picked cronies sucking up taxpayer money doing jobs that they are obviously unqualified for. Burton is the latest in a long line of political hacks, and if she wins, San Franciscans will again pay the price.

On a more emotional level, the public defender's race evokes such strong feelings because the circumstances of Burton's appointment (and her firing of Adachi) were patently unfair. If Burton were serious about being judged on her merits instead of her daddy's, she would have allowed Adachi to keep his job and the public could pick the best person for the post.
Christine Hoang San Francisco

What's Kelly done?

I disagree with your endorsement of Dan Kelly for state assembly. You write that Kelly envisions a state "where children go to renovated schools with lots of extracurricular activities." Well, that's great, but what has he done for San Francisco? As a parent of children in San Francisco's public schools, I can attest to the fact that our schools are in dire need of renovation. Children sit in dilapidated buildings, without heat, without working safety alarms, not seismically retrofitted, etc. Kelly has been on the school board for 10 years. He has had a decade to allocate funding to fix these problems and improve our schools, yet the problems remain. Can he reduce the class size in fourth and fifth grade to 20 versus 30 to 33 students? Can he expand our core curriculum to add back P.E., music, and art to enhance every child's education?
Melba Lew San Francisco

The museum's value

As a resident of Oakland and a volunteer at the Oakland Museum of California, I was deeply disappointed in your stance on Measure G. You describe the institutions asking for support as catering primarily to well-off citizens, and you question their benefits for low-income, flatlands students. Let me tell you of my experience at the museum. It yields a perception very different from yours.

I see:

Thousands of children – many of them visiting a cultural institution for the first time – taking gallery tours led by over 400 volunteer docents.

The Education Departments of Art, History, and Natural Sciences developing and holding classes emphasizing hands-on experience. Oakland schools are major participants.

Staff and volunteers working on outreach programs to our Oakland and East Bay communities. Check out our Family Sunday Programs when parents and kids join together in celebration of Kwanzaa or Days of the Dead or the Lunar New Year, as just a few examples. Look into our Junior Guides Program or our Latino History Project and many other initiatives for connecting with Oakland residents.
Ann E. Heuer Oakland

Yee's the choice

As a member of the African American Democratic Club, I disagree with your endorsement of Dr. Leland Yee's opponent. Sup. Leland Yee is the clear choice for this assembly seat, based on his record, honesty, effectiveness, and experience on issues of priority to both your publication and the community.

Yee supported the San Francisco Sunshine Ordinance, opening our government agencies to public scrutiny. He supports public power and fiscal accountability, as well as neighborhood safety and preservation.
Toye Moses San Francisco

District 12's Asian population

Your reference to the 12th Assembly District being 30 percent Asian is a bit short of the 44 percent that actually live there. Chinese Americans have lived here in San Francisco for over 150 years and, despite hardship and discrimination, we stayed and contributed greatly to the fabric and diversity of this city. The Chinese American Democratic Club believes that it is about time we have an Asian – our Sup. Leland Yee – to represent this more conservative part of the city.
Sam Kwong, president Chinese American Democratic Club San Francisco

For the record

In our Endorsements issue (2/6/02) we incorrectly stated Wilma Chan's current office. Chan left the Board of Supervisors in the middle of her second term, when she was elected to the state assembly. She was named majority whip of the assembly last year and is up for reelection in March.

We also misstated the circumstances under which Moses Mayne became a representative for District Six on the Oakland City Council. He was actually elected in a special election.

Our endorsement for state controller misstated Johan Klehs's position on energy deregulation. He left the state legislature before the deregulation bill was voted on and says he never backed deregulation.