Stop helping Israelis oppress Palestinians
Recent letters to the editor requires these comments from the my recent visit to the Holy Land:
It's no fun living in the occupied country of Palestine. There are no police to call when your family is threatened by the occupiers (Israeli) army.
The army only sells you water once a week, while the settlers on the hills have swimming pools. It's hard to harvest your olive trees, which have been in our family for 1,000 years, when there is a big 30-foot fence between your home and your orchard. And the only gate is the occupying army's massive barbed-wire-enclosed checkpoint that can take four hours to get through if the army opens the gate at all. Etc etc.
Palestinian and Israeli political leaders need to meet, discuss, approve and vote for a one- or two-country system and then withdraw all Israeli army troops from occupied Palestine. The United Nations can supply any necessary security forces to prevent violence from the few rabble rousers on either side.
The Palestinians need to drop their "right of return" mantra for Palestinian refugees to return to Israel. We need to encourage President Obama to duplicate the action of President Bush and withhold our $3 billion-a-year gift payment to the Israeli army until Palestine is no longer occupied. Then the U.S. should stop the payments altogether and keep our money in our country to create our own jobs.
A better solution on bags must exist
Being a 91-year-old woman, I have the common problem, as others do, of requiring the use of a plastic bag for my dog.
What are we to do? Can we not get a card or something to be exempt from having to pay for bags? Talk about discrimination. I still think that this new law is a bad idea in general. There should be a better solution to encourage people not to use plastic. I am afraid that we will see more garbage lying around Oakland.
Emeryville cameras are really just a trap
As a resident of Oakland, I frequently go to Emeryville to shop.
The busy and complex intersection of Powell Street and Christie Avenue is one of those infamous camera-designated intersections to catch red-light violators. What it truly represents is a trap.
When exiting east on Powell, making a left onto Christie is tricky. There is a gas station located on the southeast corner that is patronized by many customers. Individuals turning left into this station result in an unpredictable backup in the intersection.
In 2011, there were more than 500 red-light citations issued to raise revenue for the city of Emeryville, some of which were successfully contested while others were not. Even worse, there are risks for accidents and even fatalities at this intersection.
There are three solutions: First, remove the cameras. Second, re-educate the city's engineering department on practical intersection design. Third, send a message to the mayor and the City Council to stop being greedy.
Going over 'milk cliff' would be just fine
A frequent bugaboo of the "fiscal cliff" debacle was the "milk cliff," the threat of milk prices doubling, if Congress failed to extend dairy subsidies.
Consumption of dairy products, laden with saturated fats, cholesterol, hormones and drugs elevates the risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer. This is particularly critical during childhood years, when dietary flaws become lifelong addictions.
A study of 12,829 children by Harvard Medical School found that drinking cow's milk leads to weight gain. Several proteins in cow's milk can thicken mucus secretions leading to respiratory problems in children. Most African Americans and Asian Americans suffer from cramping and diarrhea because they lack the enzyme to digest lactose in cow's milk.
The good news is that green leafy vegetables and legumes supply all the calcium and proteins touted in cow's milk without the excess calories and other yucky factors noted. Every supermarket offers a huge line of dairy-free milks, cheeses and ice creams made from healthy nuts and grains.
This is why the U.S. Agriculture Department's current dietary guidelines for Americans shunt dairy (and meat) off the recommended plate of vegetables, fruits and grains. Cow's milk is produced for bovine -- not human -- babies. Let's give our kids a healthy start.