Appointment worth more than mention

The city of Oakland has recently hired a new executive director of the Citizens' Police Review Board, Anthony Finnell, who appeared at a recent meeting of the CPRB. It's too bad the city did not think that this appointment was important enough to warrant a press release.

Perhaps, given recent community efforts to achieve greater police accountability that were thwarted by the administration, it was felt that this might not be the opportune time to discuss the current civilian oversight agency that Oakland has had for decades.

What a terrible signal this sends to the community, not to mention the newly hired director who isn't valued sufficiently by his new employer to warrant a story in the press, and that the agency he now heads is similarly undervalued.

Is it any wonder that the community lacks faith in the establishment to take the issue of police accountability seriously?

The administration should be embarrassed about its failure to post a formal announcement to the media -- other than what the mayor included in her newsletter.

Rashidah Grinage

Oakland

Time for permanent Lafayette memorial

This regarding the July 11 article, "Can the crosses endure?"

I will subscribe to a permanent Lafayette memorial: a secular architectural monument, a field or forest, dedicated to those who gave their lives with hopes of peace, for an American cause.

John Wagers


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Oakland

Kids are transported by thugs, gangsters

My head is still reeling from the recent editorial about the thousands of illegal immigrant children flooding in from South America. The first paragraph says "somehow they made it here." Mexico is complicit in this. That corrupt government is being paid off to allow this travesty to occur. In the meantime, Mexico has jailed an American veteran for taking a wrong turn into Mexico and have tortured him and grossly mistreated him since his imprisonment three months ago. Unbelievable.

These kids are being transported here by gangsters and thugs. What caring parent would hand over their innocent children to that element?

The other quote that sent me into a tailspin was that President Barack Obama had nothing to do with this. Really? How else to explain the enormous increase of illegal children since Obama issued an executive order in 2013 to allow amnesty for illegal immigrants if they were brought here as children.

There were 4,000 underage kids arriving here from 2008 until this year, when it soared to 50,000. Experts expect three times that many by next year. We have an inept, hapless president who is completely clueless on how to lead -- or could this all be very deliberate?

Connie Clark Benson

Hayward

Maybe it's time for teams to relocate

The contract between Alameda County, city of Oakland and the Oakland Athletics has just been renegotiated with terms less favorable to Oakland. Once again, the talk of how inadequate our stadium is for the baseball and football teams is resurrected.

Feasibility studies have been done and boosters insist Oakland must keep its teams. These stories never include the crushing debt the taxpayer is under paying off the interest and principal for stadium upgrades since 1995 when Oakland negotiated the return of the Raiders.

A recent report by Cover 32 Raiders puts the debt owed by Alameda County and Oakland at $113 million. Other sources say it is higher. In addition, both the city and county subsidize the sports arenas $20 million yearly. Oracle Arena also has a large debt.

The paper recently reported on negotiations about how to keep the Raiders in town. Bottom line for an $800 million stadium after funding from other sources would be about $300 million of taxpayer money. It is worth noting that mean household income for Oakland is much lower than in surrounding cities such as Fremont or in the Tri-Valley, making budget shortfalls in this city more critical for city governance. Perhaps another location would be more realistic for one or both of these teams.

Anne Spanier

Alameda