Letters from our Readers: Obama takes too long to visit disaster area 

So President Barack Obama finally departed for the Gulf Coast. How many days now has it been since the president and the world knew about this grave and increasingly dangerous situation? Of course, Obama has been holding news conferences nearly every day for the past week, but he seems to enjoy any opportunity to put his face in front of television cameras anyway.

Not surprisingly, Obama hasn’t really caught much flack over his slow personal response to this potentially catastrophic situation. Had it been President George W. Bush delaying an appearance to such a disaster location, the public would have been unmercifully critical.

Now we know that nothing short of a nuclear attack on America would have caused our president to miss his second annual vaudevillian comedy routine at the White House Correspondents Dinner on Saturday. This current administration is so far removed from the true pulse of America that it is absolutely frightening.

Barry Bradley, San Francisco

Councilors’ move was right

Redwood City Council members Rosanne Foust and Jeffrey Gee showed good judgment and abstained from voting with their fellow Redwood City Chamber of Commerce board members when the chamber endorsed Cargill’s
Bay-fill development. (Mayor Jeff Ira did not attend.) At least there was some thought given to the appearance of a conflict of interest between their private and public roles.

So I am mystified as to why the city attorney of Redwood City says it isn’t a conflict for Foust, who works for the pro-development lobby SAMCEDA, to be voting to move Cargill’s development plan through the city’s approval process. SAMCEDA’s executive director repeatedly advocated for approval of the Cargill proposal at City Council meetings. Now that position is held by Foust herself.

Three of the four votes that Cargill needs for Redwood City to approve its massive housing project on restorable salt ponds are connected to private interests that have already made clear their strong support for Cargill.

Marsha Cohen, Redwood City

Blatant racial profiling

The new Arizona immigration law basically gives law enforcement authorities carte blanche to make enforcement decisions based on race and ethnicity. The law clearly targets those of Hispanic origin. It is naive to believe otherwise. This is racial profiling, a blatant violation of the Fourth Amendment right to be safe from unreasonable search and seizure without probable cause.

Arizona has about 1.7 million residents of Hispanic origin, or about 30 percent of the population, most of whom are legal residents. This means potentially 1.7 million Arizonans are likely targets when walking or driving while brown.

Ralph E. Stone, 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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