Letters+to+the+editor+from+Dougherty+Valley+AP+Government+students

Daniel Shen

Letters to the editor from Dougherty Valley AP Government students

Dear Editor,

 

My purpose in writing this is to encourage my fellow constituents in California to exercise their powers of representation and vote in the Midterm elections this November. Secondly, I want to encourage a vote against California’s proposition 5, which is regarding the tax assessments for those severely disabled and those above the age of 55. This proposition will cost local governments $100 million per year, and does nothing to increase the quantity of homes to more effectively mitigate our current housing crisis. While it may seem appropriate to provide a break on taxation for those who may be retired or unable to work, the proposition only applies to homeowners which would inherently mean they are already wealthy. With our average property tax rate already below average, those who can afford houses may not necessarily need more support paying a property tax.

Thank you for reading my letter.

 

Regards,

Rohan Tripathi


Dear Editor,

 

I believe that it is important as a Californian that we work towards fixing our road and bridge infrastructure to ensure that our citizens and first responders safety. If proposition 6 goes through, it will eliminate funding for over 6,500 transportation improvement projects currently underway leading to more hazards and issues caused by our roads. California’s road and bridge quality is deemed to be one of the lowest in the country, ranked at #49 for road quality.

Another reason why saying no on prop 6 is important because it helps keep thousands of jobs. Many of the road repair and bridge maintenance jobs would be lost due to the loss of funding if prop 6 goes through. While you may save money from not paying this tax, the damages from poorly maintained roads will lead to more expenses towards vehicle maintenance. By maintaining and fixing our roads and bridges California can continue to prosper while providing jobs and keeping our citizens safe.

 

Sincerely,

Faris Bokhari


Dear Editor,

 

Over 2 million children and young adults under the age of 21, visit 13 of California’s regional pediatric hospitals every year. In this age of modern technology, we now have the ability to improve specialized care for seriously-ill patients, from the latest cancer treatments to safer, more efficient organ transplants. California’s children’s hospitals are pioneers in the field of medical research, yet they cannot continue to make these groundbreaking discoveries without the financial support. Vote “yes” on Proposition 4, the Children’s Hospital Bond Act of 2018, which will fund $1.5 billion in bonds towards the expansion, renovation, and equipping of CA children’s hospitals. These bonds will mostly go towards non-profit and UC hospitals, so rest assured that you money won’t be get lost in the black hole of corporate America, and the raise in California’s taxes as repayment of this act is a small price to pay for the number of lives that can be saved with these funds. It is our duty to do what we can as American citizens to ensure that our children will receive the best possible treatment, in order to give the hope of life to the upcoming leaders of our nation.

 

-Francesca Apaya, San Ramon


Dear Editor,

 

Education is such a fundamental part among American lives. Generally we overlook and take education for granted. However, this overlook comes with a cost. California alone has one of the largest amount of teacher shortages in the United States; one of many issues we face in California. California needs a leader, one who is strong enough to not only address current issues we face in the school system, but also strong enough to mitigate at least a portion of current issues that we are suffering through. Tony Thurmond is capable of bringing change. Working as a social worker for over 20 years and as a California State Assembly member to this day, Thurmond’s experiences come into his favor. He knows the school system very well and his plan is sound to make constructive change. Lowering the cost to accredit a teacher is his proposal to address the current teacher shortage issues that California faces. Tuck, on the other hand, proposes to raise teacher wages by taking money directly from money budgeted for low income youths. That plan actually would worsen another issue we face; funding. Low income students are not given enough tools to make them succeed, and they suffer at the fault of the school. Tony’s plan is much better; all youths are still given a budget for their learning tools, no matter whatever income they come from.

When one is given an opportunity, no matter how big or small, one must take such opportunities without hesitation. YOU have been given an opportunity to not only change schools, but change the lives of our younger/future generations. That is why I encourage everyone to, go register to vote and place your vote for Tony Thurmond for California State Superintendent for Public Instruction.

 

Sincerely,

Michael Quang


Dear Editor,

 

The importance of voter turnout in the upcoming midterm elections can not be overstated. Historically, the turnout at midterms is only 40% of eligible voters, as opposed to the 60% that regularly turnout for the presidential elections. Though the Commander In Chief is not on the ballot, nearly every other elected office is and it is essential that voters recognize their civic duty to ensure that the government we have is truly a representative democracy. This year’s election is especially important because voters have the opportunity to help the Democratic party take back the House and perhaps the Senate as well. Any citizen who disagrees with even one of the multitude of abhorrent decisions that President Trump has made is obligated to vote because a Democratically controlled congress would be a key mechanism to check Trump. If you feel that women and minorities ought to be respected, immigrants ought to be afforded rights and the American people deserve transparency in government, then you will turnout on Tuesday and make your voice heard.

 

Sincerely,

Pooja Tallapaneni, San Ramon


Dear Editor,

Assemblywoman Catharine Baker is absolutely the right candidate to represent the people of the 16th district. She cares about important issues such as improving the U.C. education system, improving traffic situations, protecting citizens from gun violence, protecting the environment. and addressing climate change which any other Democrat would support. Her values of bipartisanism and honesty show her commitment to the interests of the people over politics. This is especially important since balance, particularly between conservatism and liberalism, is needed in order to ensure that the government supports all of its people. In terms of her bipartisanism, she has and will continue to work across party lines in order to approve laws pertaining to her values. Time and time again, her bipartisanism has been successful in resolving issues on topics such as gun violence, BART, environmental conservation, water issues, and more which directly affect people in our district on a daily basis. She demonstrates experience with legislations that she has passed before that were pertinent in ensuring women’s equality and health, improving employment, reducing gun violence, protecting the environment, creating affordable housing, along with countless others. All of these further proves why she was elected in the first place, to benefit the people she represents, and that she deserves to stay in office. That’s why you should turnout on November 6th and vote to keep Baker in office.

 

Sincerely,

Nathan Sue


Dear Editor,

 

The race for the office position of Governor of California is underway. This election represents a forked path in which California can either continue on its path to liberal policy making and renewable energy or deviate from the path into conservatism. Few elections represent the ideological divide between liberals and conservatives than Newsom v. Cox as we see that the two candidates hold completely different stances on such things as gun control, environmentalism, economic policies, and education.

I believe that Newsom is the best fit for California because it will do more good to pursue liberal policies on things such as gun control and environmentalism. Cox is not versed in climatology and has explicitly stated that climate change may in fact be beneficial to the environment. The justification and evidence for this statement from his interview with the San Diego Union-Tribune is lacking. I prefer Newsom’s plan of committing to Jerry Brown’s plan to make California run solely off of renewable energy sources by 2045. Newsom’s plan seeks to curb the negative of effects of climate change like the rising sea level endangering those who live in coastal cities. For example there are people in Florida that are going to be forced to move inwards as climate change continues to ravage the Earth. Cox also believes that gun control is a waste of time. But as a student who grew up and heard about such school shootings as Sandy Hook, Parkland Florida, and Santa Fe, I take gun control seriously and think that background checks should be a necessity for surely they would reduce the frequency of school shootings compared to not having any sort of regulation on who has the ability to own a gun.

 

Sincerely,

Kevin Liow


Dear Editor,

 

As November 6th approaches, I’m growing increasingly alarmed at the prospect of voters casting ballots in favor of Proposition 6. I’m convinced that such a passage would be detrimental for everyone, from both an economic and public safety perspective.

California needs 130 billion dollars in the next ten years to fund infrastructure maintenance projects, especially those that make sure aging bridges and roads meet earthquake safety standards. Revenue from the gas tax in question will cover just 50 billion dollars of those costs — yet certain groups want to see even this meager measure scrapped.

Furthermore, the financial benefits of repealing the gas tax are being grossly overinflated. Although the support campaign claims that without gas taxes, an average California family will save $780 each year, this figure has been skewed by the inclusion of transportation companies’ gasoline expenditures; the real figure is estimated to be closer to $120. Here’s another real figure: the American Civil Engineers Society estimates that each Californian family spends about $844 on poor road condition-caused vehicle repairs every year — a figure that certainly will rise should maintenance projects be halted.

Here’s what shocks me the most: the support campaign’s chairman, Carl Demaio, hinges his anti-gas tax argument on the point that he trusts oil companies to lower their prices “a smidge more” than he trusts the government to spend tax dollars effectively. This argument is undeniably flawed — Proposition 69, passed overwhelming in 2017, guarantees that all gas tax revenue will be used to fund transportation projects,  instead of being diverted to the General Fund.

I’m absolutely appalled by the campaign of misinformation mounted by pro-Prop 6 leaders. In order to deter their irresponsible actions and protect our public safety, we MUST vote NO on Prop 6.

Best,

Won Bin Lee, San Ramon


Dear Editor,

 

The importance of the Central Contra Costa County Sanitary District Director position can not be overlooked any longer. As it is in charge of maintenance of the usage, supply, and distribution of water, it directly affects not only our health but also finances and the health of the environment. Obtaining a high standard for our water requires only the most qualified candidate.

As the current director of the Sanitary District, Michael Robert McGill is the ideal candidate for this position. Not only does he believe in using technology to develop more efficient and environment-friendly methods of recycling/accessing water, but he has three engineering degrees, including one in Water Resource Engineering to support this goal. With ways to efficiently recycle water while protecting waterways, usage of water can be distributed to other causes, such as to trees during droughts, as well as industrial applications. The second candidate, Stephen R. Maris, has two engineering degrees of his own, but wrongly prioritizes a decrease in tax money over our health and the environment. The last candidate, David R. Williams, appears more as a business figure rather than an innovative mind.

After all is said and one, Michael Robert McGill is the most qualified candidate.

 

Sincerely,

Rachel Liu


Dear Editor,

 

I firmly believe that Proposition 12 should be passed. There are many misconceptions from http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/opinion/editorials/sd-prop-12-farm-animals-20181018-story.html The editoral board claims that proposition 12 should not be passed because consumer pressures are already going to be influencing the actions of companies. What this article fails to understand is that voting for proposition 12 would only strengthen and solidify consumer sentiments for better animal treatment overall. This is because consumer sentiments are backed by proper legislation to hold capitalist corporations accountable for their actions against animals. Furthermore, relying purely on consumer pressure to push corporations towards better animal treatment policies is extremely unreliable because it depends on every consumer potentially boycotting large corporate products. This is simply naive in nature and would not be plausible in real application. Rather, it is essential that we vote for proposition 12 to help the animals that are currently being forced into tight and inhumane cages. It does not make sense that we can’t provide the same space to these animals that we provide to our beloved cats and dogs. Vote proposition 12 for the pigs, cows, and chickens that are currently suffering. Vote for better products for all.

 

Sincerely,

Gabriel Lee, San Ramon


Dear Editor,

 

When considering the youth of today, I think Aparna Madireddi is a candidate that should not be overshadowed.  If we are trying to get more young adults to vote because of the lack of representation, then someone on the San Ramon City Council should be representing the young adults.  Aparna Madireddi has an extensive background on various committees dealing with education like the Executive Board, SRV Council of PTAs and the Executive Board, Dougherty Valley High School PTSA.  Along with this idea, most of the civilians of San Ramon would like to see the preservation of the green spaces and the luxurious that our humble city holds.

Council members like David Hudson that advocate for developmental projects are not a right fit of the council position because transforming San Ramon into an landscape of housing and buildings would defeat the purpose of what our city stands for.  Candidates like Madireddi advocate for the preservation of these open spaces, and this is apparent with her presence on the Open Space Committee, City of San Ramon. Madireddi’s background knowledge in running businesses makes her a very strong candidate because of her experience with managing funds and her appearance in the San Chamber of Commerce makes her aware of pressing issues in San Ramon, and how funds should be allocated in terms of priority.  Overall, I believe that Madireddi is a well-rounded candidate who also appeals to the youth of San Ramon.

 

Shashank Kumar


Dear Editor,

 

I am writing to you on my opinions of proposition 7, a proposition that gives Congress the ability to get rid of Daylight Savings Time. I believe that people should be voting “No” for this proposition because it is useless. California cannot get off of daylight saving time unless the federal government, congress, approves. Also, proposition 7 only gives California the ability to vote on the issue of daylight savings time. Shifting our time to compensate for earlier/later sunrises/sunsets makes sure that we maximize daylight, lowering our energy costs. Contrary to the popular argument, people have a lower heart attack and stroke risk when the time is pushed back an hour, cancelling out the day of higher heart attack and stroke risk. Without congress’s approval California cannot do anything to change daylight savings time and there are more benefits daylight savings time than one may think.

 

Regards,

Jonathan Sugijoto


Dear Editor,

 

Good intentions versus proven impact. The choice that must be made when it comes to making a smart, reasonable decision for the Mayor of San Ramon in the upcoming midterm elections.

On one hand, Sanat Sethy has intentions of preventing traffic gridlock, protecting open spaces and balancing the budget. His background in business will aid him with plans involving budgeting, but his campaign does not elaborate on any thought out execution for these endeavors.

On the other hand, Bill Clarkson has a very impressive background in regards to working with the community. Aside from being a 38 year resident, he has been involved in a multitude of programs such as San Ramon Chamber of Commerce (2008), founding the Rotary Club (2010), and being on the San Ramon Valley Unified School District Board (1998), to name a few. His goals for his fourth and final term are more realistic compared to Sethy. Through his experience, he is qualified on all levels to serve for mayor: business, community, and experience. Therefore, noticeable change is more likely to come from Clarkson. From his time as mayor already, he has made an impact. From a brand new city center to a downtown that will bring the city together in a collective place, he holds immense promise for the future.

 

Sincerely,

Ashley Raizes

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