• Bringing home a daughter one more time - 04/18/2014 10:30 PM PDT
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    System isn't fair, we need flat income taxI do not think that the U.S. system of taxation is fair when approximately 50 percent of the population pay no income taxes at all, and a portion even get a refund even though they have paid no taxes.  
     
    Officials must expand public health fundingThanks to the paper for covering the recent meeting of California TB controllers, which was held in Oakland on World TB Day, March 26.  
     
    Shouldn't try teen in adult court systemThis is regarding the teen boy in Pennsylvania who created destruction and near death in his high school with two knives.  
     
    Statistics will help unlock vital curesJust as researchers are beginning to realize that our Alzheimer tragedies eventually will be solved by comparable statistics, Autism Spectrum Disorders, or ASD, undoubtedly will be identified and perhaps even prevented in the same way.  
     
    Facts clear that U.S. should free PollardHenry Kissinger, former secretary of state; George Shultz, former secretary of state; R. James Woolsey Jr., former director of the CIA; Lawrence Korb, former undersecretary of defense; Michael Mukasey, former attorney general: this is only a partial list of  
     
    Charges scapegoat PG&E after factCriminal penalties are warranted only if specific individuals are culpable.The National Transportation Safety Board forensic report found that both the pipe material and the weld that failed were defective when originally installed in 1956.  
     
    Senate vote shows hidden racial biasThe Senate's March 5 vote to block President Barack Obama's nomination of Debo Adegbile to head the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division stands as a classic case of the influence of hidden racial anxieties that need to be acknowledged and debated.  
     
    Parents critical for schools to flourishIn the April 6 guest commentary, "Teachers aren't to blame for most of school's problems," the author places the blame on penny-pinching taxpayers.  
     
    Our 'field of dreams' must not be replacedAt a time when Oakland is in need of public participation and private investment to benefit youth, the Oakland Unified School District is considering ripping out a project that epitomizes big dreams, hard work and partnership.  
     
    Repeal Obamacare, a pathetic failureJudging by the rest of the nation already having had health insurance, 40 million getting their care from hospital emergency visits, and reports that Obamacare has caused 6 million already covered people to be dropped, to now have only 7 million sign up is a  
     
    Smith is blatantly exploiting childrenIn his March 30 guest commentary, Tony Smith, the former Superintendent of the Oakland Unified School District, vigorously lobbies against employment protection for teachers that is at the heart of the ongoing Vergara vs.  
     
    Local VA has always given excellent careI'm writing in response to recent veterans' claims of how badly they were treated by Veterans Affairs. As a veteran of the Korean conflict in the early 1950s, I use their facility in Martinez.  
     
    Concern regarding Supreme Court caseA recent article regarding arguments before the Supreme Court about the right of religious conservatives to refuse to provide all kinds contraceptive coverage for their employees concerns me deeply.  
     
    Must stem the tide of obesity in nationIn the United States, 37 percent of the population is obese. However, 61 percent of health care dollars each year are spent on obesity-related illness or problems (Fair Food Network, March 26, 2013).  
     
    Commentary right about the homelessA recent, excellent guest commentary clearly stated the gross neglect and victimization of the mentally ill homeless population -- a very high percentage of said population.  
     
    Three major sources for saving our waterI am very disturbed about the pressure of solving the drought problem being primarily put upon the general public.  
     
    Being friendly can make big difference I was prepared for a pretty boring day, sitting in a waiting room while my wife had a three-hour dental procedure.  
     
    Why do man-made drugs get free pass?I am writing this from my observations as a senior at Chico State University.A student who smokes a joint on a Friday afternoon after passing a tough exam will not pass a drug test he takes over the next two weeks because of that joint.  
     
    Guthrie, Friedman offered our choices I am amused to observe that both Woody Guthrie and Milton Friedman were born within weeks of each other in 1912.  
     
    Rental depreciation is not at all simpleI'm responding to the letter about landlords and depreciation on improvements to their property. It goes like this: Put in a new carpet.  
     
    Using sanctions is a pointless effortEconomic sanctions are symbolic gestures, an expression of national pique, and remarkably useless in changing any government's behavior.  
     
    Climate deniers put Earth, humanity at riskCharles Krauthammer, in "The myth of 'settled science'," (Opinion, Feb. 23), denies being a climate denier and tells us that he believes "it cannot be good for humanity to be spewing tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.  
     
    Hep C-free Oakland is the ultimate goalThanks to the paper for printing Dr. Diana Sylvestre's guest commentary on Hepatitis C Awareness Week. The Oasis Clinic is truly an Oakland gem.  
     
    Our society becoming too overprotectiveRecently, a representative of my son's Little League threatened to sanction our team's coaches for allowing our youngsters to take warm-up swings in the on-deck circle (with a parent assisting no less).  
     
    Can't allow Ukraine to devolve into warEconomist Paul Romer, speaking of economic matters, is credited with coining the phrase, "A crisis is a terrible thing to waste," meaning there is profit to be made in crisis solutions.  
     
    Find good solutions to unemploymentA recent newscast featured a man being interviewed about the status of his unemployment benefits, which had run out because extensions were no longer being honored.  
     
    A Safeway takeover bad for consumersMy thanks to the president of the Commercial Workers Union for presenting information about the proposed takeover of Safeway from New York City private investment firm Cerberus Capital Management.  
     
    Can't afford to lose St. Rose HospitalWake up, Hayward. We can't lose St. Rose Hospital. With Kaiser moving to San Leandro, Hayward won't have a hospital.  
     
    Better way to spend funds for militaryI support Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel's push to reduce the size of the military and our national defense budget.  
     
    Richmond public housing fiascoI have been a Richmond resident for more than four decades, and I can't think of anything more disgusting than the news story in the Times about the Richmond Housing Authority.  
     
     
    (Photo by Dan Hallman/Invision/AP Images)
    Ryan Seacrest leaving 'American Idol?'

    Report says the “Idol” host stepping down after current season.