Letters: Ticket banks, not the poor 

"You better have a ticket to ride Muni," The City, Sunday

Ticket banks, not the poor

I'm surprised you are shocked that the job of fare-evasion police, or, as I like to call them, shakedown artists, is the "most thankless job" in The City. Their job is a political one and is directed at the poor and disadvantaged of this city. It is driven by the mayor and his San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency board or directors and directed by their bosses in the banking, real estate and tech industry.

Why do I say that? Well, we don't see any cops or district attorneys down at the banks on Montgomery Street or in front of the offices of the real estate speculators or the hedge fund managers who stole billions upon billions from the people of the United States.

Why is that? Well, the banks, Wall Street and the real estate industry run and buy the politicians from Washington, D.C., to San Francisco. Here in San Francisco, city officials want the working poor and poverty-stricken people forced out so that it can be more palatable to the needs of the rich.

So they turn loose these shake-down artists on Muni to hassle the working stiff, the fixed income senior and the disabled and downtrodden to check if they paid "their fair share" of 75 cents or $2. Making a crime out of poverty is something the rich have always been successful at.

Charles M. Minster

California Alliance for Retired Americans

San Francisco

"Only minor crimes reported by police at Outside Lands ," News, Aug. 11

City downplays fest noise

Whether by honest omission or calculated design, Outside Lands' measurements of sound levels from the sidewalk fails to capture the concert's actual noise-pollution levels.

When residents complain about noise, concert employees measure sound levels on the sidewalk. This fails to characterize the sound and its effect on structures and their residents.

Just as a guitar's sound box amplifies the vibration of a string, so the overamplified bass and drums of Outside Lands cause wood-framed structures adjoining the park to resonate. The effect on inhabitants is akin to living inside an acoustic guitar while it is being played.

Concert promoters, City Hall and media boosters have a vested interest in denying there is a noise problem. How many of them have chosen to spend time in a residence adjoining the park when Outside Lands' monstrously amplified shrieking, banging and thumping was permeating every corner of that residence?

Riley B. VanDyke

San Francisco

"Open letter to Uber's CEO from S. F. taxis," Opinion, Friday

Deregulate S.F. taxi business

Unionizing cab drivers won't solve San Francisco cab companies and drivers' problems competing with the new rideshare companies. Their problems stem from years of not having to compete in the marketplace due to insidious government regulations. Contrary to Beth Powder's assertion, unionizing won't change the public's perception of the industry. Only offering service comparable to the rideshares will change the public's perception.

Powder seems to want the rules and regulations that have caused the cab companies' problems applied to the rideshare companies. Rather, she should be calling for the deregulation of the taxi industry.

Attempting to stifle competition by having the AFL-CIO apply political pressure to public officials to add more insidious regulations will only worsen the situation for everyone.

Howard Epstein

San Francisco

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