Maybe Willie Brown should pay for signs

In 2005, Willie Brown received $450,000 from the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturer's Association to help defeat Proposition 79.

Proposition 79 was put on the ballot by unions and consumer groups as a way of providing discount drugs to the state's uninsured and underinsured poor and senior citizens.

Ironically, Brown was tasked with lobbying the NAACP to convince them (successfully) to officially oppose Proposition 79 in lieu of Proposition 78, which was crafted by the drug industry. I say ironically because Proposition 79 clearly was in the best interests of the NAACP's constituency, and it was that big pile of money he received that helped turn the tide in favor of Big Business.

It's really ironic that now, eight years later, the NAACP is turning to the same people who were denied fair pricing for their prescriptions and are asking them to pay for road signs to memorialize the selfsame man who took that money. Ironic as well that his money ultimately came from the pockets of the people who paid too much for medications.

A Willie Brown Bridge? Perhaps he should pay for his own signs.

Erich Hayner

Oakland

Irritating liberals is reason to keep duck

We love Mallard and look forward to him irritating the free speech/tolerant liberals in the Bay Area.

Guess liberals are only tolerant of one side of free speech -- theirs. Keep Mallard. Love it.

Robert and Margaret Weidners

Livermore

Hard to sympathize with 'poor' hunters

In a Sept. 15 op-ed, we learn right away that the author leads a national nonprofit that supports cancer research. In the next few paragraphs, we hear about the price of ammo going up, because of a bill to try to get rid of toxic lead in bullets.

Has the letter writer ever made the connection between toxins in the environment and cancer? Lead shot in bullets does all kinds of damage to condors, other birds and wildlife, accumulating in the food chain and harming the reproductive capabilities of numerous species.

Has he ever considered the connections between the health of our natural world and his and his families' and communities' own health? Or does nature simply exist so some people can have fun killing wildlife for sport while cheaply toxing up the environment?

I don't have much sympathy for the sad story of the poor, working-class hunters and fisher people who may not be able to use cheap lead in their shot and weights any more, but will actually have to pay more to pollute less.

What an outrage, to require that lead shot be replaced by a less toxic substance, and that it actually be paid for by the people who use it (and leave it lying around in the environment)?

Maybe this challenge to detoxify the ammo can become a call to sport hunters and fisher people to get more creative and skillful with their sport, so there is less waste and less toxic fallout left behind.

Jean Robertson

Oakland

Where were the Cal alums against OSU?

After 20 years of anger management classes, my psychiatrist downgraded my road rage to road irritation. I thought I had finally made progress in controlling my temper. But after the Ohio State Buckeyes showed up at Memorial Stadium, I was transformed into a raging and ranting Mr. Hyde.

I would like to make one thing perfectly clear: My seething cauldron of rage was not directed toward the score, Sonny Dykes or my beloved Cal Bears; nor was it aimed at Ohio State and its Buckeye fans.

No, my anger is directed at the Cal alumni and supporters. It was like a home game for the Buckeyes -- and that is utterly unacceptable. The Old Blues were drowned in an ocean of red. Cal alumni let Dykes and the new era Golden Bears down. Cal supporters did not show up.

If Cal alumni can't come out and support their team and their university, then this is the sorriest day ever. Ironically, Memorial Stadium cost in excess of $300 million and Cal supporters can't afford a $60 ticket? Bull.

It's a little fishy that 60,000 Buckeye fans decided to take a weekend trip to Berkeley (2,423 miles) to watch their football team Saturday. Or do 60,000 Ohio State fans live here in the Bay Area?

Michael Anderson

Berkeley