Sonoma West Letters to the Editor, August 2, 2018

Quit Stereotyping

EDITOR: I’m getting so disgusted with the communities all around Sonoma County and their claims to be doing what they can and having empathy to help wildfire victims. They are outright hypocrites. They talk about wanting to help, but when it comes down to it, as long as it isn’t in their backyards.

I have personally gone to various areas and talked with people. Many of the “transients and criminals” were once homeowners with jobs, a secure and safe environment in which to lay their heads at night.

Let’s quit with the stereotyping and realize how fortunate we are because anyone of us could have been in their predicament. Worry about the hate crimes, violence, DUI and crimes against children that are a reality. We all have the opportunity to change a person’s day with a simple smile.

Penny Vangellow

Sebastopol

Disingenuous developers

EDITOR: I find it completely disingenuous when developers say things like how much they appreciate and enjoy the “magic of the redwoods and the river” when their developments will do nothing but ruin that magic. Just be honest. You want to make money, and you don’t really care what damage your development will do once it’s built.

People go to Guerneville because it’s not the noisy, overcrowded Bay Area. Guerneville remains quaint and cute and LITTLE. We don’t need a 120-room hotel, spa, conference center. Think about all those cars now pulling in and out of that 120 room development. Think of the radios and the doors slamming. Think of the cars backed up on 116. Think of the horns blowing. Think of the trucks coming in and out daily. The additional garbage trucks, the noise of delivery trucks. Where is the “magic of the redwoods and river” then? It’s lost forever. And then Lok and his team will use the money they’ve made to escape to some place where peace and quiet can still be found. A place fewer and fewer of us can afford.

Erika Donald

Guerneville

An imperfect solution

EDITOR: I have a business on Morris Street and am a member of Coaches Corner. I travel up and down Morris several times every day. I am aware that a homeless encampment on a city street is an imperfect solution to a very large problem, but I have never witnessed any uncivil behavior by those living on Morris Street. The motorhomes and other vehicles are generally neat and well kept, and the area is quiet. Drive down there yourselves. Take a look. These are people who are down on their luck, making the best of it. Let’s not jump to the conclusion that the presence of the poor is a “danger” best solved by insisting that the poor remain invisible. Let’s look into what services, information, outreach, and community connections will help ameliorate the impact on local businesses.

Bob Engel

Sebastopol

What if they were on your street?

EDITOR: I bet dollars to donuts that if these mobile campers were on your street — where you live — you would not be so generous. Did you not read in the article “people dumping buckets of urine and feces onto the property”? Yes, I have compassion for others down on their luck, but degrading property value and business does not help anyone. You don’t help people by giving resources away and getting nothing in return. The permissiveness on Morris Street is hurting everyone.

Robert Sterler

Sebastopol