Let teachers defend students

Recently, a letter to the editor pleaded for a dialogue on the issue of gun violence, after succumbing to the fear of a school principal accidentally injuring someone while protecting children with a firearm.

There are risks inherent with any activity, but a sober judgment is whether the potential benefits outweigh the perceived risks. It is unreasonable, although understandable, to allow fear to control the dialogue.

A schoolteacher recently told me that he fully expects to be killed if a shooter ever comes to his school, either being shot in the back while trying to shield children, or shot in the front in a futile attempt to attack the criminal. He expressed the wish that he might be permitted something more useful to defend children with than his own body.

Why do we entrust the development of young minds to school teachers without trusting them to physically defend those children from harm? Perhaps the general state of education in government schools adequately answers that question.

Jim Mellander

El Sobrante

Most qualified should get picked

This is about a recent article about U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu's resignation.

Chu said he had been inspired by Martin Luther King Jr.'s well-known quote urging people to judge people, not by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.

Chu was quoted in his resignation letter, "In the scientific world, people are judged by the content of their ideas." The article continues, "Obama is under increasing pressure to diversify his Cabinet picks so they are not all white men."

Obviously, Barack Obama's first administration Cabinet members were not all white men, and neither is his second. But whatever happened to judging individuals on the content of their character and their ideas?

What a loss for our country to discriminate against any individual -- male or female, Caucasian or nonwhite -- who is most qualified for a position.

Jeff Morris

Brentwood

MTC should not waste our money

I am 91 years old and have never written a letter in protest of anything.

However, I am outraged that the public's money should be spent for walking across the new eastern span of the Bay Bridge. Those funds could be used to much more advantage in these difficult economic times.

The MTC should rethink its plans for celebrating the span opening and do something more constructive with those funds.

Mary A. Bell

Livermore

Can't litigate everything

This is in response to John P. Kelly's Feb. 26 letter to the editor, "Victims should file suit over guns." I wonder, how would Kelly feel if his favorite hobby were litigated out of existence?

If Kelly's mindset were more popular, we would be living in a world without wine (people fall when drunk), cars (they run over people and animals), sports (people break bones and get degenerative injuries) or air travel (planes sometimes fall out of the sky or crash into buildings).

I guess if we really want to stay safe, we can just stay in our homes and eat seaweed paste and drink purified water (although water accounts for many deaths, too).

Jeff Sherwin

Martinez

Bad guy with gun in Santa Cruz

"The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun," asserts Wayne LaPierre, NRA's executive vice president.

The NRA has proposed arming school personnel at every school in the country. In the wake of the killing of two Santa Cruz police officers by one gunman, will the NRA now propose that all cops be armed? Oh ... wait.

Stan Oberg

Moraga