Letters to the Editor: June 6, 2017

Out of Business

I really enjoyed the article on local violin maker Anthony Lane (“Cue the Violins,” May 3); however, it contained an unfortunate howler. The author, Tom Gogola, referred to “old Stradivarius instruments, the standard-bearer and namesake family company that’s been making violins for more than 300 years.” After Antonio Stradivari died in 1737 at age 94, having made a few hundred violins, violas and cellos, two of his sons made fewer than 10 more instruments. But by 1743 these sons were also gone. Any violin with a Stradivarius label dated after 1743 either has an inexplicably inaccurate label, or (and this is far, far more likely) the instrument itself is just a “Stradivarius”-labeled factory fiddle from France or Germany, millions of which were produced over the decades. They bear about as much similarity to a real Strad as a grainy photo of a Rembrandt does to the actual painting. Which is to say, there is no Stradivarius “company” that’s still making violins.

Santa Rosa

Sex Crime

Existing law makes knowingly exposing an individual to HIV via unprotected sex a felony punishable by up to eight years in the state prison. Why repeal this, as SB 239 calls for? AIDS/HIV is a concern for millennials who have had unprotected sex and are now realizing their error. Reducing the penalty for individuals purposely spreading AIDS is wrong. For those of us who lived through the ’80s and ’90s seeing acquaintances die or be confined to a lifetime of life-saving cocktails, our confusion is made even more acute.

This is not a public health matter. Willfully spreading a life-threatening disease is a felony.

Santa Rosa

Repugnant Man

Trump has finally achieved the notoriety he wanted. Indeed, his name will go down in history, but what he will be remembered for is his ignorance, selfishness, diminished intellect and bad hair. His behavior clearly reveals what many already knew: that having piles of money is in no way an indication of intellectual ability, capacity to show leadership skills or an allegiance to American values.

That said, this repugnant, selfish, psychologically disturbed little man does represent elements of who, and how, we humans can be. He reminds me of the Vietnam-era Army captain who, in describing the justification for decimating a neutral rural village of farmers, women and children, remarked, “It was necessary to destroy the village in order to save it”.

Trump, manipulating the good will of desperate Americans, lied his way into office. And he has lied us out of the Paris Agreement, in effect, demonstrating to the world our refusal to stand together and deal with, perhaps, the greatest threat to human survival

To the Trump supporters out there, I ask this: What if he’s wrong? What if climate change is real, and your unwavering support allows him to saddle our children and our grandchildren with a less habitable planet? Are you really OK with making future generations pay for his mistake? Why would you support this man, riddled with greed and envy, and allow him to cripple your future family?


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