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Letters to the Editor

Inspired by Prison Expose
I would like to say what a joy you brought me today. Sunday—a day in prison that can go one way, or another. By chance I came across your newspaper and my day has been joyous ever since. Thank you.

I would very much enjoy a subscription to your paper please.

I read your article (September 2010, “Exposing Prison”) and was inspired by the article. I have severe medical issues, and even with the present health system and federal receivership, Avenal continues to violate the class action settlement of People v. Plata. I hope to write you soon with an in-depth view of how Avenal State Prison clearly does what it wants, in not only healthcare but in the appeals process as well. I hope to hear from you soon, via the subscription.

Felix Armoz
Avenal, CA

*****

Have We Forgotten Due Process?
From the Constitution of the United States of America…

Amendment IV: The right of the people to be secure in their persons against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated.

Amendment V: No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury—nor be deprived of life, liberty or property, without due process of law, nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation.

Amendment VI: In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed…and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.

All these things should have been done before killing the young man! (Editor’s note: The writer is referring to the death of Joshua Ferreira, who was shot by the Fresno police on September 3, 2010.)

Diane Corbin
Fresno

*****

Solving Our Problems with a Lunar Strategy
What if there was a way we could induce the Earth’s population, through their governments, to invest a percentage of their tax money into a United Nations–sponsored corporation that would result in a reduction in the cost of energy from an average of $0.22 a kilowatt hour to one or two cents? The efficiency of crop production would be increased from an average of 1,500 bushels per acre per year to 3,000, population pressure decreased, the overuse of fossil fuels and subsequent pollution decreased and slash-and-burn agriculture reduced to allow the return of more wetlands, forests and prairies.

Sounds impossible? It isn’t. The foundations for such a program were laid out back in the late 1970s when G.K. O’Neal presented the proposal to Congress—the building of a lunar base for the extraction and processing of orders for construction of space colonies whose population would build, operate and maintain power satellites for the conversion of the sun’s rays to microwaves. The microwaves would be beamed down to antennae fields on earth to be converted back into electricity.

The program was received with enthusiasm by Congress, but then one of the most depressing things happened to the earth’s population—Ronald Reagan became U.S. president. The world not only shuddered, but we lapsed back into a period of war and injustice and we lost our impetus to begin progress into the high frontier.

But the inspiration and desire has not been lost. People who think this win-win idea is feasible should consider two adages and a fact of history: “nothing ventured, nothing gained” and “we’ve got to start somewhere.” Also, there was a time when a man stood up before the Continental Congress and announced: “I think we should go to war against King George and the most powerful military force in the world.”

I’m sure he was laughed at heartily. And yes, I know we didn’t get the democracy we’d hoped for, but an oligarchic dictatorship run by the wealthy. But at least we tried and came close.

It’s these wealthy who now force us into unjustifiable wars in order to turn a profit for themselves. (Isn’t it interesting that the working people of America are asked to give their lives for their country during a war willingly, but wealthy investors are not asked to donate their money—they actually receive profits?)

Since one of our main interests is to reduce war, wouldn’t it be a good idea to reduce the need for war by inducing the bulk of the Earth’s population to invest in a program designed to decrease poverty among the people and avarice (for land and natural resources) among the wealthy?

It can be done. The natural resources that are out there in near space are waiting for us to exploit. If this can lead to world peace through an investment toward a common goal, then—why not?

R.J. Cantwell, Ph.D.
Dunlap, CA

  • The Community Alliance is a monthly newspaper that has been published in Fresno, California, since 1996. The purpose of the newspaper is to help build a progressive movement for social and economic justice.

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