Letters from our readers: Rail plan will do damage to low-income families 

High-speed rail has declared war on low-income immigrant/minority families and children living between San Francisco and San Jose. The rail board’s edict that the least damaging deep tunnel or trenching options are now off the table will have life-changing detrimental affects on these families who can only afford to live near existing Caltrain tracks.

The board’s choice to take 150-mph trains through these low-income communities means that Caltrain track right-of-ways must be expanded by evicting these families and taking their homes through eminent domain. The largest-ever use of governmental eminent domain takings is about to be inflicted by high-speed rail, but no one is speaking up.

Michael Brown

Afghan women’s plight

When the Taliban came to power after the Soviet Union left Afghanistan, they made the wearing of the full burqa obligatory. The burqa completely obscures a woman’s body; it has a canvas grid in front of her eyes that allows her to see without being seen. The burqa became a canvas prison, devaluing Afghan women, symbolizing women’s oppression under Taliban rule.

Not much has changed for Afghan women under U.S. occupation, even in areas controlled by coalition forces. When the coalition forces eventually leave, the Taliban will either regain control of the country or at least exert considerable influence over its affairs, ensuring that Afghan women will continue to lead a miserable existence. Will the plight of Afghan women have any influence over our exit? Probably not.

Judi Iranyi
San Francisco

China arms race elevating

It looks as if we’ve got another arms race heating up, this time with China. They are developing missile technology so they can dominate the western Pacific, as reported in the Aug. 6 Examiner. We won the last arms race by outspending the Russians. Do you think China will let us borrow the money for this round?

Dan Clarke
San Francisco

Why add another law?

I was wondering if there are any current laws covering the crimes that an Aug. 12 letter-writer thinks should change opinions of people who complain about the sit-lie sidewalk law.

Camping out on front steps is trespassing; urinating or defecating in a public place is indecent exposure; drinking alcohol would be public intoxication or open container violations. Taking drugs is illegally being under the influence or in possession of a controlled substance; and harassing can be aggravated assault, etc.

Now could you please explain to me why we need more laws to combat sidewalk pests?

Dave Cherry
San Francisco

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Staff Report

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