Re “Voter power” (Our Opinions, May 22): The Sacramento gang loves to talk about their legislative process as the laws that result from the give and take of intelligent, vigorous debate. Actually their laws result from bestowing legislative favors and accepting campaign contributions from the recipients thereof. The initiative, referendum and recall are a political third rail that continues to frustrate their push for absolute power in Sacramento. They want the ABC system: anybody but constituents. Say “Thank you,” again to Hiram Johnson and company. – Walt Meares – Debbie Gordon Woodland Hills Fooling Mother Nature Re “Women see periods as unnecessary now” (May 22): This brings to mind the margarine television ad where a majestic matron, while initiating a jolting clap of thunder, states, “It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature.” It’s not only not nice, but, sooner or later, it will bear consequences. – Stephen A. Downs Valley Village Dream on Re “Mayor: LAUSD reform aids economy” (May 20): It quotes our mayor saying “there are things we can do to improve these schools and I’m on a mission to do it.” After carefully rereading the story, I don’t see what the mayor’s things are. Demonizing the LAUSD is not a solution to solving the problem of making our schools even better than they are now. The theme of the mayor’s very moving inaugural events was “dream along with me to make a better city for all our people.” I dream of a day when there will be recognition by the mayor of the progress made by LAUSD in recent years and sharing with the people of L.A. how the LAUSD and the mayor will work together for the good of all concerned. – Marvin Schulman Westwood Redevelopment cloak Re “Communism, capitalism meet in L.A.” (Their Opinions, May 21): His use of rather strident rhetoric notwithstanding, I enjoyed Walter Moore’s critique of the role of City Hall in the Los Angeles business and housing market. In particular, Moore called attention to one of the oddest activities of municipal government: under the cloak of “redevelopment,” all businesses are compelled to fork over money that ends in the hands of a select few, determined not by market forces, consumer demand or knowledgable business leaders, but rather politicians. The logic and justification for such a program are not merely faulty; they are nonexistent. – William Goodwin Los Angeles Speak and be one Re “Amid debate, Senate declares English national language” (May 19): Certain elements have gone over the edge when Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid says it’s “racist” to think of English as our national language, and Sen. Ken Salazar trots out the old bromide about kids being told to speak English in school. Isn’t that why they’re in school? Same thing happened in my family but nobody was offended. My parents didn’t come to the U.S. expecting to speak Spanish, Russian, Chinese or their own native tongue. In any nation, especially a great one like ours, we all must be able to speak to each other or our nation dies. – Charles K. Sergis Calabasas National language Re “Amid debate, Senate declares English national language” (May 19): Making English our national language is the best idea our country has come up with in a long time. Making our national language anything else besides English doesn’t help immigrants to the U.S. and doesn’t help break down the wall between English-speakers and non-English-speakers. In some parts of the country, English has become the foreign language and makes many people feel like foreigners in their own country. – Jennifer Urrutia Van Nuys Dumb kids? Re “Failing schools” (Your Opinions, May 17): It’s hard for me to believe that someone could be so off the mark; blaming the failing schools on the students. Don’t get me wrong, the student plays a large role in their education but an “excellent teacher” should be producing excellent results, wouldn’t you expect? This is a topic worthy of many more than the 100-word limit here. Bottom line – the teacher, the student, the parent and the school “system” all combine to “educate.” – Mark S. Ditko Sylmar LA’s BEST My husband arrived just one half hour after enrollment in LA’s BEST began and found there were only Spanish forms. He was told they were making English copies. After waiting several minutes, a Spanish-speaking mother helped him complete the Spanish form. When he submitted it, he was told he received space 83 of 85. Had he waited for the English form, there would not have been a space for our son. This was poor planning, or a deliberate attempt to admit a select demographic. We were outraged. How many other children were turned away because their parents don’t understand Spanish? – Gabriela del Campo-Moore Studio City Better investment Re “Opponents face off over Prop. 82”: The $2.4 billion that Prop. 82 would cost should instead be invested in school libraries, especially in low-income areas where children have the least access to books. Research shows that library quality and reading achievement are related. California’s poorly funded (3 percent of the national average) and poorly staffed (one librarian per 4,500 students, the national average is one per 900) help explain why California’s reading scores are among the lowest in the nation. The interest on $2.4 billion would soon provide California with the best-staffed and best-stocked school libraries in the U.S., rather than the worst. – Stephen Krashen Malibu Overlooked duty Re “Can’t coexist” (Your Opinions, May 22): One is led to assume the writer is using the Statue of Liberty to symbolize the concept of an open-borders policy, specifically between the United States and Mexico. The inscription at the base of Lady Liberty is a poetic sentiment that expresses to all peoples of the world an ideal, signifying hope to the poor, the oppressed, etc., which, if not implemented by adherence to logical thinking and to the laws of the land, would lead to utter chaos. In his zeal to denounce sending troops to our southern border, the writer has overlooked one important duty of any United States president: To keep secure the borders of the country against illegal penetration for any reason. – Stephen Pettine Canoga Park Withdraw with dignity This administration cannot withdraw from Iraq with dignity; that belongs to the soldiers. With no leadership in the White House or the Pentagon, it’s a mistake to leave this invasion in the hands of the generals; it belongs in the hands of the sergeants and enlisted men/women who are doing the fighting. Just as in Vietnam, the Iraqis are fighting because they have nowhere to go. – Jerry Pennington Van Nuys160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE11 theater productions to see in Southern California this week, Dec. 27-Jan. 2Burbank Sold – again Re “Drug coverage nearing rupture; Millions could fall into Medicare gap” (May 21): Once again Bushy Boy and his sleazebag administration have stiffed it to the people. Only this time it is our senior citizens and disabled. Funny how that “doughnut hole” in the Medicare drug program has not been mentioned until after the May 15 enrollment deadline. Bushy Boy and his cronies are a classic example of corporate puppets selling the elderly and disabled to the pharmaceutical and insurance companies. Unfortunately, this is no longer a “government of the people, by the people, for the people,” but rather a going once, going twice, sooooold – to the highest corporate bidder!