Asthma has become a forgotten epidemic

Thanks so much for printing the fine article on asthma, "Out of Breath" by Katy Murphy.

This disease that affects so many of us deserves more attention and more resources. When the astounding increase in asthma first began, it garnered both attention and resources.

Soon, however, almost as though it were a trend that had passed, both shrank away.

Unfortunately the number of individuals affected by the disease has not been shrinking. They are part of a forgotten epidemic.

Murphy's article pointed out the costs and burden to both the individuals and society, most of which can be avoided with proper treatment, health education and asthma-friendly environments.

Margo Sidener

President and CEO Breathe California San Jose

Cat owners must share some blame

I'm writing in response to the recent letter suggesting that cats are hit by cars due to inattentive and irresponsible drivers.

While I'm sure this is sometimes the case, cat owners should also bear some responsibility. A few years ago, my husband was driving (I was a passenger) on a neighborhood street on a clear day, when all of a sudden, a cat ran into the street directly under our car.


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My husband had no time to stop before we hit the cat. He was not texting, talking on the phone, or being careless in any way. We found the cat's owners, who rushed him to an animal hospital, but it was too late. We later found out that this cat had a history of escaping from its home and running into the street.

Many other times, I have seen cats running in neighborhood streets. Responsible pet owners should ensure that their pets remain safely in their homes or yards; not running in the streets, where they are tempting fate.

Lee Eisman

Oakland

Reconsider trucks on I-580 in Oakland

It is time to revisit why no trucks are allowed on I-580 in Oakland.

Those of us who live in the flatlands have to endure all of the truck traffic and we get no relief (soundwalls). We breathe in all of the pollution, put up with the noise and accidents. Traffic levels have increased over the last 40 years.

Why should some people have it better than others? It is not a toll road. It mainly serves people commuting from the valley. Special-interest forces are at their best when it comes to this portion of the freeway.

I think that people in San Francisco would also agree to not have trucks going through their city. Where would it end? Caltrans and the Alameda County Congestion Management Agency are no more than a joke. They trample on peoples' rights because they are backed up by lawyers, the lawyers we pay for. We need to occupy the state next.

David Gonzales

Oakland

Rights being taken away from us all

I could not agree more with the recent letter "Moving toward total government control."

Ever since President Barack Obama was elected to office in 2008, I have noticed his practice of trying to rewrite our Constitution.

Prior to last November's election, I had felt that we should "clean out" our present Congress.

Obama has been attacking the United States and her people for years. I hope and pray that we can continue to hold on for the next four years, then perhaps we can elect those who want to serve the people and not themselves.

Get smart, Americans. Read the fine print to learn what is happening to your rights.

Dick Purdee

Castro Valley