Letters to the Editor: May 21, 2014

Big Man on Carrillo, More Levine, Humane Execution

Carrillo Must Go

There have been many opinions voiced regarding Sonoma County Supervisor Efren Carrillo, his actions and his behavior. As a citizen and taxpaying resident of Sonoma County, I am also an observer of elected officials and the system of justice they are charged with administering, and the fact that Carrillo is still a county supervisor is appalling to me.

Although he was found “not guilty” by a jury, in his own words Carrillo admittedly violated laws and a woman’s rights. His unacceptable criminal acts have accelerated, as this was not his first arrest. Were he not a political flunky and running dog for the big-money barons of Sonoma County, he would have been found guilty on charges of attempted breaking and entering, attempted sexual battery, public drunkenness, lewd behavior and being a “peeping Tom.” He would have been sitting in prison and not conducting business as usual.

All these violations of the law—as well as violations of the public trust, requests for him to step down, and public condemnations—have failed to get the board of supervisors to remove him. With Carrillo still carrying on as a supervisor, this says to the taxpayers of this county, “We are just fine with a public servant doing whatever the hell he wants, to whomever he wants, no matter what it is, including criminal behavior, because observing the law does not apply to him.”

Doesn’t “Jane Doe” deserve equal protection under the law? When a woman, despite calls to 911 for assistance, is not safe from being terrorized by a drunk, sexually perverted politician, it is time to practice self-defense. Law enforcement officers in this county are very quick to shoot down an innocent child but slow to act to protect community members who are in danger.

Carrillo should be removed from his position, be it by vote, by censure, or by whatever means necessary. Besides the irrefutable fact that he committed these disgusting acts which he has admitted to, he is an embarrassment to the entire community, including the Latino community in the district he is supposed to represent.

The struggle for civil rights and equal representation without discrimination has been and continues to be a long one and a hard one. Carrillo was given a wonderful opportunity to represent and be a role model for young people of all colors and ethnicities. Yet he chose to act and behave like the oppressive ruling class. Efren Carrillo should be removed at once!

Santa Rosa

Editor’s note: Elbert Howard is a founding member of the Black Panther Party, and an author, lecturer and community activist in Sonoma County.

One Shot

In “The One Shot Solution” (May 7), it is very confusing to hear all of this conversation on the apparent extreme difficulty of coming up with a way to carry out humane executions. I’m not endorsing the act of killing somebody to show them how dreadfully wrong it was to kill somebody; I’m only addressing the tons of media exposure about which chemical cocktail to use. What with our ability to come up with drugs that will do just about anything we desire, why is this seemingly simple thing such a challenge?

Every veterinarian has the chemicals and skill to humanely put down any kind of domestic animal. Why does humanely “putting down” a human animal have to be any different? Every day we hear about people who died of accidental overdoses of various drugs. If these drugs are so effective when used accidentally, why not apply them where needed in this case?

When I had an operation many years ago, the anesthesiologist explained to me the importance of care in administering the general anesthetic. He said that a little too much would put me to sleep permanently. Isn’t this what we’re looking for? Instead of a complicated, three-component “cocktail,” why not a single injection that simply induces a gentle but permanent sleep?

Will somebody please explain this in simple terms, without filtering the discussion through the usual bureaucratic and political nonsense? I bet I’m not the only one wondering.


Bad Match

I was one of several candidates for the Assembly two years ago. I endorsed Marc Levine in the general election because I foolishly resented Michael Allen being “superimposed” on Marin by the assembly leadership, although he reflected my issues near perfectly. My mistake.

Marc Levine went on to represent big agriculture and big oil, and turned out to be a bad match for the people of Marin and Sonoma. Conservatives might cheer Levine’s corporate clients, but fracking and shipping Northern California water to huge corporate farms in Central California are not truly conservative positions; they are the hopes of a greedy few.

I am voting for Diana Conti because we need a State Legislature that really cares about the needs of California’s people, not an extension of the U.S. Congress which openly disdains working people and downright hates the poor.


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