Bad decisions about a library's purpose

I am writing with such disappointment. I walked in to the Centerville Branch of the Alameda County library system in Fremont earlier this month and was appalled that the library had been stripped of the majority of books.

Our family has used this library for years. It was a place to find history and imagination. Now we have nice, neat open spaces with chairs where we can visit. The administrators totally lost the concept of library: A place to gain knowledge, read and expand our minds. Unbelievable.

Maybe, just maybe, the public should have been asked what we want. Certainly not this. When they cleaned house, they got rid of precious, priceless knowledge. They threw away part of our culture.

I also took the time to see if these changes were implemented in Union City and Newark. They were not. Who makes these poor decisions on behalf of the taxpayers? I have since learned this was also done in Albany much to the public's dismay.

Cherie Lubbers

Union City

Give due process to children at border

Please remember the kids at the border are someone's children and deserve decent treatment. In addition, they are on our land -- the place where rule of law governs. They are entitled to due process and equal protection of law.


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Congress should pass the president's supplemental funding request and not roll back protections to unaccompanied minors. These children must have protections under the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, which passed with bipartisan support and was signed by President George W. Bush, ensures the physical safety of unaccompanied children and the proper screening for humanitarian protection and must not be weakened.

Unaccompanied children are fleeing violence and should not be returned to unsafe situations, but must be protected and cared for humanely, while assured due process.

They have legitimate claims to protection under our asylum laws. For all of these reasons in addition to the tremendous backlog in immigration courts, funding should be expanded to this area.

I stand firmly against any proposal that would sacrifice a child's safety for expediency. Our freedom-loving nation should instead find ways to reduce the violence these children face in their home countries and ensure that children who arrive to the U.S. have access to the legal counsel and services they need.

Evelyn J. Herrera

Oakland

People should not put up with mess

Wow, a signal of distress flying atop the roof of Hayward's old City Center building. An upside down American flag. Have you seen it?

We, the people of Hayward, deserve better for ourselves and our city. Blight breeds blight. Why do we have to put up with this mess? Why do the residents who live in the condominiums in the shadow of this high-rise pile of previous hopes and dreams of the past city government have to tolerate this? It's dangerous. It's ugly. It's shameful that we can't come to some sort of resolution.

I want better for our downtown. How can we invite visitors and school children to our beautiful new History Center and still try to explain this old, diseased relic as part of our proud past? Amazing that what once occupied that very spot, the original Hayward Union High school, was the pride of Hayward.

I appreciate the inverted symbol of our nation, flying valiantly in the wind, calling to the people for a rescue effort. Can we work together, even if its just to sweep the pine needles along the surrounding sidewalk? Can we ask our talented city muralists to create a ginormous painting to camouflage the entire structure? Or, more realistically, can we just finally tear it down?

Celeste Hales

Hayward