If you don't vote, it is hard to complain

According to an article on WSJ.com, in April of this year an election was held for mayor of Ferguson, Mo.

The Wall Street Journal further reports there are approximately 15,000 adults of voting age in Ferguson, although we can assume some of them would not be eligible to vote. The population of Ferguson is 67 percent African-American. In April's election, a total of only 1,350 votes were cast for mayor.

Now, no one in our country who's holding their hands in the air and telling the police they're unarmed should be shot. And our sentencing laws for possession of crack cocaine in my opinion constitutes cruel and unusual punishment.

But it's also my belief that the residents of Ferguson, and residents everywhere, don't have a right to complain about their elected officials and the government if they don't exercise their right to vote.

Greg Winker

Hayward

U.S. justice system clearly deteriorating

Regarding the recent article about the four men who killed a German tourist while visiting this country who were offered plea deals:

What is this country of ours becoming? Will family members of this tourist agree and be satisfied with a sentence of five to nine years for the murder of their loved one?


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This kind of deal is exactly why criminals are not afraid of the justice system we have. Criminals should be made to fear our system and know they will pay severely for, especially, murder, rape and kidnapping charges.

You all can put the blame and point fingers at the inanimate objects such as guns and weapons, drugs and alcohol -- but the point is criminals do not fear our justice system. The system needs to change, and the sooner the better for us all.

Why is this not understood by law enforcement, lawyers, prosecutors and judges? Oh, plea bargaining is simpler and cheaper right? Tell that to the loved ones of this murder victim. If there is no doubt these four men are guilty, they should all be given an exit from this world or never see light of day again.

When my brother and I were growing up and did something wrong, we did not fear our mother, but when she would say "wait until your father gets home," we had the fear put in us and we would not repeat what got us in trouble again.

Change it and change it soon. Repeat offenders, repeat offenders. No fear and that's what we end up with. I'm tired and sickened by stories like this one. Speak up and let's deal with this like it should be dealt with or forever live in fear of the repeat offenders.

Steven Snortum

Fremont

Awful events don't register with Obama

Every day, it is gut wrenching to watch the whole world in agonizing chaos, while our president is either off playing golf, vacationing in plush surroundings or on yet another fundraiser.

It has to be one of two possibilities; either he is clueless about any solutions or he just doesn't give a damn.

Connie Clark Benson

Hayward

Has to be more to the garbage story

Something stinks about the Oakland garbage contract being given to California Waste Solutions. The company must now go out and buy trucks, bins, build a facility to sort waste, hire workers, all by July of 2015. What in the world is the Oakland City Council high-fiving about The only thing I can see that's high five is the potential five feet high collection of garbage on the streets of Oakland by August 2015.

There has to be more to the story that the public deserves to know, this does not make sense. I feel sorry for the residents of Oakland come garbage pickup time next year.

Marlene Herbert

Pleasant Hill