Letters of the Week: Our Readers Chime in on Last Week's Issue 

click to enlarge cv_4021.jpg

"Housing Is a Liberal Imperative," News, 2/27

When Liberals Are Conservative

I always say that there's no one more conservative than a Bay Area liberal when it comes to housing. I've come to believe that people act in their own self-interests whenever preserving their wealth is in conflict with their values. It's human nature, I suppose.

The average home in the Bay Area is 5 to 7 times higher than elsewhere in the country, so their tactics are paying off well. Soon, the entire area will be nothing but the wealthy. The rest of us will be commuting from afar or fighting each other for what little affordable housing is made available through puny government funding.

Want to see blatant hypocrisy in action? Watch a Bay Area homeowner react to the idea of building more housing near them. It's like asking them to amputate a limb. They will protest and scream that everywhere else must allow newcomers while doing everything they can to block those newcomers from coming to their neighborhoods. The thinly veiled nativism and racism is revolting.

How else can the same Bay Area activists and voters believe in unfettered immigration to California and the United States and also in strictly limiting housing construction in their cities at the same time? They vote in favor of strict housing supply because the imbalance between high demand and low supply benefits those who are already here.

David Deriso

Build It Elsewhere

In Oakland, there's no need to destroy existing neighborhoods by erecting huge apartment blocks where there have been single-family homes for a century or more. There's plenty of land that was used for manufacturing lying fallow. Creating a new high-density area makes far more sense than taking away one of the important things that makes Oakland a great place to live.

I've lived for 38 years in a neighborhood of single-family homes and small apartment buildings, with a great mix of people of many ethnicities. On one block alone, there are likely native speakers of 15 languages. While it's certainly true that many of us couldn't afford to buy our homes at today's prices, to tear down lovely old houses would be both a loss of a real neighborhood and incredibly wasteful of the labor and materials that went into building the housing stock here.

If you drive out to, say, San Leandro Street, you see many commercial buildings that are either empty or underused. They also tend to be pretty ugly (with some notable exceptions). Their location close to a BART line also makes them far more appropriate for new housing development.

Tony Marcus


"Where There's Smoke, There's Toxic Fire," News, 2/27

Thank You!

Thanks for reporting about this fire. I live in unincorporated Richmond and heard there was a fire that day, and despite a long internet search as well as monitoring local TV news, I could find out nothing about it. Despite what the fire official said, we do not all use social media. A siren warning would have helped. Also, why doesn't the city or county have some publicized website where we can go to find out real-time emergency news? Googling terms like "fire today Richmond CA" produces old, old news stories.

Susan Borowitz

We Weren't Enveloped

I live blocks from Sims Metal Management in the Santa Fe Neighborhood. My neighborhood was not "enveloped in a heavy, black cloud of toxic smoke." Just setting the record straight. Fire/smoke went straight up. We had some smoke smell, a little ash, depending on the light wind. I did shelter in place, but really there wasn't any need to do that.

Cynthia Haden


"The University of Nuclear Bombs," Feature 2/28

Protest Coming

There will be a protest against nuclear weapons at the gates of Livermore Lab at 8 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 6, 2018 — the anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima. Daniel Ellsberg will be the keynote speaker.

Also, Tri-Valley CAREs has organized opposition to Livermore Lab and nuclear weapons more generally for more than 30 years. To learn how to become involved, check out TriValleyCares.org

Scott Yundt


Tags:

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Anonymous and pseudonymous comments will be removed.

Readers also liked…

Latest in Letters

Author Archives

Most Popular Stories

  • The Express' November 2018 Endorsement Guide

    We endorse Schaaf, Ezzy Ashcraft, and Butt; along with Fortunato Bas, Thao, Middleton, and Whitaker for Oakland council and Knox White and Oddie for Alameda council.
  • A Guide to Oakland's Ballot Measures

    Six measures on the November ballot include new taxes, tax breaks, changes to existing taxes, worker and tenant protections, and education funding.
  • Role Reversals in the Oakland Mayor's Race

    In the Oakland mayor's race, the normally staid Libby Schaaf has come out swinging, while one of her top challengers, the usually brash Cat Brooks, is acting more like a Fortune 500 CEO.
  • Richmond at a Crossroads

    The city is on the verge of an economic boom: Will Mayor Tom Butt, a longtime city official, lead it to prosperity, or will the Richmond Progressive Alliance take full control of City Hall?
  • A New Berkeley Council?

    With two longtime councilmembers retiring and two vulnerable newcomers defending their seats, half of the city council could be gone next year.

Special Reports

Fall Arts 2018

Our Picks for the Best Events of the Fall Arts Season

The Queer & Trans Issue 2018

Stories about creating safe spaces in the Queer and Trans community.

© 2018 East Bay Express    All Rights Reserved
Powered by Foundation