Right decision on insulin

With students now returning to school, I applaud the California Supreme Court decision to allow school employees other than nurses to administer insulin to children under carefully controlled circumstances.

Because only 5 percent of California schools have a full-time nurse, this makes it much easier to get these students prompt access to the care they need. In the past, the requirement that only school nurses give insulin meant that parents needed to be ready at a moment's notice to come to school and help their kids.

School staff who volunteer to help these kids will receive clear training and instructions under the common-sense approach approved by the court. This approach is already working successfully in many other states.

I serve on the local leadership board of the American Diabetes Association, and am proud of the role our organization played fighting for over eight years to reach this outcome.

All students have a right to pursue their education in a healthy, safe environment. This decision vastly improves the lives of students with diabetes and their families.

Rodney Paul

Kensington

Hyperloop transportation

Kudos to Elon Musk. The Hyperloop, his proposal for the next breakthrough in transportation, has me excited.

Where do I sign up? Let's scrap high-speed rail.

I question Richard Muller's opinion that Musk's proposals are "completely impractical." The UC Berkeley physics professor was once a skeptic of global warming.

If we can go to the moon, I think we can go from San Francisco to Los Angeles by Hyperloop transportation!

Lloyd Coyne

El Cerrito

Unavoidable facts on Israel

Jewish Voice for Peace is a great organization, and it came as a surprise that Jon Peterson, who identifies himself as a member, tried to deny the obvious in his recent letter.

Israeli professor Uri Davis wrote two books documenting apartheid practices inside the state of Israel, "Israel: An Apartheid State" in 1987, and "Apartheid Israel: Possibilities for the Struggle Within" in 2003.

Furthermore, a careful legal study conducted by the Human Sciences Research Council of South Africa examined Israeli practices in occupied East Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza, concluding that the practices meet the international legal definition of the crimes of colonialism and apartheid.

Readers are also invited to watch the film "Roadmap to Apartheid," narrated by "The Color Purple" author Alice Walker.

People desiring peace should start by facing, not skirting, the truth. Under international law, colonialism and apartheid are crimes against humanity, and every government, individual or group is legally obligated to do what they can, including boycott, divestment and sanctions to end these crimes.

Hassan Fouda

Kensington

Fodder for comics page

This is in response to the Aug. 9 letter from Sidney Steinberg, "Richmond medical claims are phony," referring to the Aug. 3 demonstration at the Chevron refinery.

Steinberg wrote, "I watched the smoke go up 1,500 feet. No residents received the smoke," referring to Richmond's pollution infusion from the 2012 refinery explosion.

Steinberg stated, "These 'eco-mobsters' receive big money from government jobs and grants from the government, corporations and unions. They overstate pollution."

This letter, and others by him, are a constant flow on similar themes.

The El Cerrito Journal carries no other funnies.

Norma J.F. Harrison

Berkeley

Another side to Florida case

A recent letter writer considers several bits of evidence in reaching the conclusion that George Zimmerman was justified in killing Trayvon Martin. Unfortunately, she considers only evidence from one side, Zimmerman's.

Zimmerman states that Martin attacked him and bashed his head repeatedly on the concrete. Zimmerman states that Martin told him he was about to die. Zimmerman states it was a fight for his life.

Of course, we can't hear what Martin would say. He can't testify. Would Zimmerman have any motivation to lie or stretch the truth? Of course. Consider that while you are considering.

I have two other questions: Considering that Zimmerman didn't identify himself or state what he was doing following Martin, was Martin justified in standing his ground and would he have been justified in shooting had he had a gun? Finally, how many times did Zimmerman follow or call the police when he saw white teens at night in the neighborhood?

Joseph Brulenski

Berkeley

Volunteer at public schools

With a new school year upon us, I would like to point out the need for volunteers in our public schools.

Several years ago, as a recent retiree whose only grandchild lives in a distant state, I became a volunteer in my neighborhood elementary school. I love working with the children at the school, but an added bonus has been getting to know and appreciate the dedicated, hardworking adults who care for those children -- teachers, principal, librarian, teaching assistants, secretary, custodians, playground supervisors, and others.

Although the schools can use nearly anyone interested in helping, I especially encourage those of you who are of a certain age, are retired with time on your hands, know a thing or two about life, and believe, as I do, that a sound public school system is the foundation of any democracy, to consider becoming a volunteer.

Contact your local schools to volunteer.

Barbara Ferenstein

Berkeley

Israelis yearn for real security

In his recent letter, Jon Peterson insists that Israeli settlements are killing the so-called peace process.

He and his Jewish Voice for Peace friends must think the American people are gullible and stupid. Anyone who is paying attention knows that Israelis yearn for peace and are more than willing to discuss the settlements -- but only in return for real security.

Those of us who can understand Arabic, and even those who can't, hear the Palestinians loudly proclaiming they want all of Israel, not just the settlements. When the Israelis returned Gaza to the Palestinians, what they got in return was Hamas and rockets.

A glance at the geography of Israel shows the Israelis can ill afford another Gaza in the West Bank. And as for peace in the Middle East, all one has to do is look at what's happening with Israel's neighbors to realize that goal is a long way off indeed.

Lewis A. Glenn

Danville