From our inbox: Letters to the Editor for the week ending November 19, 2021 | Opinions


Tragically, two weeks ago I experienced what I hoped for and prayed that it never happens. As Noozhawk reported on November 4, “Pedestrian Hit by Vehicle and Killed on Las Positas Road in Santa Barbara,” a woman was struck and killed while attempting to cross Las Positas Road around 6.30pm.

She was struck by a truck and the impact sent her body over 200 feet. With the help of a paramedic, we began chest compressions until the authorities arrived. I believe she did not suffer and was killed instantly. I knew it was probably a futile attempt, but we did what we could.

This tragic accident should not have happened.

There are no crosswalks on Las Positas Road except at Adams School. A flashing pedestrian crossing at Las Positas and Stanley Drive has been needed for a very long time.

Speeding tickets on Las Positas are commonplace.

Visibility of oncoming traffic is extremely difficult in Las Positas and Stanley. When you turn left from Stanley to Las Positas you are taking a great risk as you cannot see over the hill as traffic approaches, especially if the traffic is accelerating.

I suggest three solutions for this inherent danger.

»Place a stop light in Las Positas and Stanley.

»Place a flashing crosswalk at Las Positas and Stanley.

»Build a sidewalk from Stanley to State Street.

Any of these or a combination would greatly reduce the likelihood of death. I ask the City of Santa Barbara to act quickly to reduce this danger.

Marie anderson
Santa barbara

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Thanks to Noozhawk editor Bill Macfadyen for pointing out the many dangers along Las Positas Road in his November 12 column, “Another Dark Week for Death and Destruction, with a Charlie Munger Sideshow”. I live near the scene where this poor woman was tragically killed, and he is there.

It’s not very convenient, but I will only enter Las Positas from San Onofre Road, opposite Adams School, where there is a traffic light. The City of Santa Barbara needs to do something about the security concerns.

Lauren Hunter
Santa barbara

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In his November 12 column, Noozhawk editor Bill Macfadyen presented a fine defense from Santa Barbara Planning Commissioner Barrett Reed and a deserved rebuke to City Councilor Kristen Sneddon. And I think, done very tactfully.

JW Burk
Santa barbara

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Regarding the November 17 article, “Santa Barbara County Grand Jury Describes Effects of Distance Learning in New Report,” the grand jury report was quite predictable in its findings on the academic consequences and socio-emotional aspects of the COVID-19 shutdown.

But a more holistic view of education in Santa Barbara County would indicate that the socio-emotional damage caused by school experiences and the low literacy levels of our students is, sadly, nothing new.

The report on the special education department of the Santa Barbara United School District, which the consultant called “scathing and brutal,” is etched in my mind. He began his public comments: “Students come to this neighborhood with learning disabilities and they leave with emotional disorders. This was in 2009, a decade before COVID-19.

I know how many too many students suffer from the negative effects of their experiences at school. At one point, I was hired as a consultant by SBUSD to develop a parent resource center and provide outreach services to community members. I learned of the desperation of parents as they tried to get a proper education for their children and did my best to defend them within the system. It was in 2010-2015.

In 2019, students across the county took the standardized “Smarter Balanced” tests to assess their level of literacy proficiency. Although wealthy, simple, and small school districts elevate the overall score, the results indicate that only about half of the students in this county meet or exceed state standards in English. It was the school year before COVID-19.

The grand jury report was a snapshot of today, but the problems lasted long before the start of the pandemic.

From crisis comes opportunity, and I suggest that now is the time to address the root causes of these educational difficulties which have such a profound effect well beyond the school years. May we rethink, redefine and re-commit to quality educational outcomes for every student, across our country.

Cheri Rae
Santa barbara

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Thank you to all the supporters who joined in my campaign for mayoralty for better leadership in the city of Santa Barbara. Each of you has made a significant contribution to helping me raise awareness among the city’s constituents on critical issues.

I congratulate Mayor-elect Randy Rowse and look forward to working with him to make our city a better place for everyone!

Deborah Schwartz
Candidate for mayor of Santa Barbara

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The Oct. 25 article by Noozhawk editor-in-chief Giana Magnoli, “No major issues reported in Monday’s storm that soaked Santa Barbara County,” was good news. We all know how lucky we were to narrowly avoid the effects of this most recent and disturbing cycle of drought / fire / flood.

The Thomas Fire of 2017 and the 2018 tragedy of the Montecito flash floods and debris flows are events we have never seen before and are indicative of the effects of climate change.

Catastrophic events like the 10-year drought we find ourselves in and an endless fire season are clear and undeniable harbingers that things have changed and that we need to do something about it.

Our community must fight the devastating effects of climate change by being proactive. Let’s start by advocating for renewable energy sources locally and follow Carpintaria’s example by investing in recycled water infrastructure rather than depending on our reservoirs.

The Santa Barbara County Oversight Board must stay on track with our county-wide climate action plan, making choices that will benefit future generations of the county.

Continuing on our current path, without changing course, is like organizing a picnic in a patch of poisoned oak. Lunch may be nice today, but you know you’re going to pay for it tomorrow.

Nathan Irwin
Santa barbara

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December 10 is International Human Rights Day around the world and therefore is an appropriate time to list all the human rights violations perpetrated against its citizens by the country with the worst rights record. of man to the world: China.

China has no freedom of speech, religion, fair trial, assembly … it is a giant police state controlled by the communist government, a dictatorship obsessed with maintaining its power and crushing of dissent.

China overthrew the independent nation of Tibet in 1950, destroyed its monasteries, stole its artifacts, and turned it into a resource extraction colony. China is now forcing Tibetan schools to teach in Chinese and erasing their cultural heritage.

Tibet has been described as the least free place on the planet, along with Syria. No journalist or tourist is allowed to go there without government guards.

There are 2-3 million Uyghurs in forced labor prisons – no one knows for sure how many – are subjected to genocide of appalling proportions. Falun Gong practitioners are imprisoned for practicing their yoga-like religion.

In a billion dollar industry, the internal human organs of members of marginalized groups held in Chinese prison camps are forcibly removed – “sometimes when patients are still alive,” an international court in London has found, as NBC News reported in 2019.

Hong Kong Democratic activists are captured and jailed without a fair trial. People are missing and tortured for expressing their beliefs or exhibiting their art.

The Beijing Winter Olympics, which will begin in a few months, are an attempt to “clean up sports” from the brutal policies of their regime. That’s why protests are taking place at NBC headquarters across America, and why President Joe Biden has called for a diplomatic boycott of the Olympics this winter.

The Han Chinese majority took over and controlled other ethnic minorities to retain power. China is creating islands of war in the oceans, encroaching on India’s international borders, forcing neighboring countries like Nepal to return refugees, building nuclear missile silos, and pushing its way through foreign governments.

You may be arrested for a photo of Nobel Peace Prize laureate, the Dalai Lama, who is respected around the world and one of the millions of Tibetan refugees forced to flee their homeland.

This is why there are hundreds of Tibetan support groups – and now Uyghur, Democratic and Hong Kong groups around the world – protesting against the policies of the Chinese Communist government.

China is on the wrong side of human existence. What can we do about them? Write to American politicians to keep human rights on the agenda with China. Try to buy American products instead of those made in China. Convince Amazon to have an American flag on the products it sells that are verified to be made in America.

Google the above issues and find out. Visit the websites of Tibetan support groups like Santa Barbara Friends of Tibet. Help local Tibetan cultural groups like Tibetan Associations in Southern and Northern California. Attend our protests outside the Chinese Consulates in Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Above all, appreciate the freedoms we have here in America.

Kevin Young
Friends of Santa Barbara of Tibet

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