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Bee readers react to turkey attacks, midterms, veteran pay and water abuse in Palm Springs

Sacramento Bee - 11/20/2022

Veteran pay

“Many vets are landing jobs, but the transition can be tough,” (, Nov. 11)

Disabled veterans are grossly undercompensated, and this injustice is causing enlistments to dry up.

Veterans have been asking Congress for fair pay since 1918. In fiscal 2023, a disabled veteran with no dependents is compensated at the ridiculous rate of roughly $43,000 s annually. The national average wage index for 2021 was $60,575 per year, and the median income was $70,784.

In my opinion, the reason for the gross undercompensation of veterans is that they are only compensated for projected loss of wages due to their disabilities. They are not compensated for their low quality of life so as to keep taxation low for wealthy elites.

Congress must correct this now.

Ryan Alcalde


Water abuse

“California’s water-rights enforcement process is overwhelmed,” (, Nov. 4)

After spending four days in the Palm Springs area, I am horrified by the abuse of water privileges by residents and businesses there.

People in other parts of the state are using buckets in their showers to catch water; saving the water from dinner preparation for gardens; and sacrificing beautiful landscapes for the common good. Certainly there is water abuse and overuse everywhere, but this appears to be a predominant culture of ignorance and lack of concern for the drought affecting the Western states.

I was amazed at the carefree approach to water I observed — lush green lawns, new lawns being seeded, etc. It was especially ironic to see cheerful signs everywhere about how desert communities are conserving water.

I am compassionate about the need for more water in the desert communities of our state, but this level of abuse should not be supported by any responsible citizen.

Christine Cahill


Focus on issues

“Republicans win House majority. What changes will they make?” (, Nov. 16)

While reading this article, I was searching for legislation the Republicans propose to introduce to combat high inflation and high gas prices specifically. These are the issues most Americans are concerned about and the issues Republican candidates were complaining about throughout the election cycle.

It’s obvious that those issues are now taking a back seat and that Republicans will instead focus on rhetoric and investigations. How does that help the average American family? It appears that Republicans never really had a plan to deal with these issues.

The blame game works both ways. No reasonable person wants to see our government bogged down in meaningless investigations that will not benefit the average American.

Anthony Lucas


Angry birds

“Wild turkeys give chase to people in uniform says resident,” (, Nov. 15)

Gobblers gone wild! The question presents itself: Why are wild turkeys attacking postal workers? Simple! They are the ones delivering the weekly food ads.

In one week, I received seven ads from different stores telling me about great sales they have on turkeys. The turkeys figure that if the mail carriers never delivered the ads, no one would give a second thought to skipping a turkey dinner every fourth Thursday in November!

Claire Gliddon

Fair Oaks

News coverage critique

“Wild turkeys give chase to people in uniform says resident,” (, Nov. 15)

With missiles landing in Poland, a NATO country, and killing two people, Ukrainian power station strikes by Russian missiles (a war crime), two student attacks with seven dead and Africa’s population expanding beyond resources, The Bee takes up the front page and two full inside pages with wild turkey attacks on postal workers?

The Bee’s concept of what stories are important is a constant, disappointing surprise to me.

Ron W. Loutzenhiser


Hard act to follow

“Pelosi faces uncertain future weeks after attack on husband,” (, Nov. 12)

The job of speaker of the House is essentially one of herding cats. Think what you will of Nancy Pelosi, but you can’t deny her skill at marshaling disparate colleagues in pursuit of a desired goal. She knows how to motivate, coax, placate, massage, coddle, mother-hen, persuade, cajole, goad, horse-trade or whatever else it takes to get the job done. She deserves our admiration and respect.

Speaker wannabe Kevin McCarthy doesn’t have the right stuff. He’s a follower, not a leader, bending and swaying in the wind like a giant balloon outside a car dealership. If the Republicans take control of the House as expected, let’s hope they choose someone who’s up to the arduous task.

Nancy Pelosi is a tough act to follow.

Sharon Dalrymple


Collective action

“Drought, fire killed a third of Sierra Nevada CA forest,” (, Nov. 1)

Your article about the recent study showing one-third of conifers in the Sierra Nevada have died in the last decade is a sobering reminder that the impacts of climate change are here. But that’s only part of the story.

The fourth edition of “Indicators of Climate Change in California” came out in November with more bad news. From shrinking glaciers in the Trinity Alps to wildlife deaths in the Mojave Desert, and from more acres burned by wildfire to more occupational heat-related illnesses, California is already feeling the impacts of climate change.

If we hope to mitigate future damage, every person, business and government official needs to work together to make the transition to a fossil-free future. It’s going to take all of us to make a difference.

Lisa Howard


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