Letters from the Readers: Small businesses need to protect themselves 

I read with great interest James Carafano’s Sept. 4 column, “Small businesses unprepared for major disasters.” In November 2001, I went to New York and delivered checks totaling about $75,000 from the San Francisco business community to assist small businesses that had been devastated by the 9/11 terrorist attacks. I met with a number of small businesses that remained optimistic that they would get back in business. But in reality, most did not.

Carafano correctly noted that small businesses and the federal government are not prepared for major disasters. Take for example the swine flu situation. If an epidemic were to occur, how many small businesses could deal with one-third to one-half of their employees not at work?

Now is the time for all small businesses to take action and protect themselves.

Scott Hauge
San Francisco

Congestion near schools

The new school year is here and Dianne Feinstein Elementary School is running at full capacity. Students, teachers and administrators add up to around 500 people arriving daily between 7:30 and 8 a.m.

Since schools are exempt, no official impact study addresses the congestion issues associated with this mini population explosion in the residential Parkside district.

Moreover, since SFUSD prioritizes attendance lotteries above neighborhood schools, the majority of Feinstein students live more than a mile away. The daily congestion is at the breaking point.Making matters worse, the school does not qualify for a city-funded crossing guard because no one has been injured yet and crossing guard priorities are given to schools directly adjacent to urban freeways, such as 19th Avenue. Many parents fear that if an accident does occur, they will incur the liability caused by city-created chaos.

Matt Mitguard
San Francisco

China-U.S. relations

The decision to start a trade war with China over tires is foolish. Whether we like it or not, China is one of our biggest trading partners. China also has loaned us billions of dollars. There are numerous ways that China can hurt us. Maybe President Barack Obama should take that into consideration?

Keith C. De Filippis
San Jose

DA’s smart move

Thanks to District Attorney Kamala Harris on her decision not to seek the death penalty for the alledged perpetrator of the notorious Bologna killings. It is understandable that the family yearns for the maximum punishment possible, so it would be far more politically expedient to seek the death penalty.

But, it is the task of a civilized government to prevent rough justice. A fair trial establishes the truth and seeks to protect society from dangerous criminals. We need more courageous politicians who serve the true cause of justice rather than make political capital out of tragedy.

Denise D’Anne
San Francisco

Headline conundrum

I, too, was drawn to your sensationalistic front-page headline Sept. 9, “Eyebar blunder on Bay Bridge.” But everyone seems to have done their jobs satisfactorily and in a timely fashion. What was the point of this exaggerated headline?

May Fulton
San Francisco

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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