The letter in Rhapsodies & Rants titled "On Display" (Aug. 22) and the essay "Teetering on the Brink" (Aug. 15) describe high-heeled shoes as representing the subordinate position assigned to women by gender roles. The best reason to discourage high-heeled shoes is their negative effect on the body. But simply denying their appeal attacks the symptom and reinforces the underlying problem.
Despite the influence of gender roles, high-heeled shoes and similar symbols are tied to expressions of female sexuality, no matter how we reason about it.
I can't deny my physical response to Betty Boop. Being honest with myself doesn't prevent me from seeing her as a negative role model. Let's be grownups. Drawing the veil tighter around women's expression of sexuality maintains the dynamic in which men are the pursuer of the passive female. Transforming these symbols is not impossible. Let's make every year Sadie Hawkins year. Give your male child a flower.
I gave the article "Senator Warbucks" by Peter Byrne (Jan. 7, 2007) to several people, and enclosed it in a letter, minus any rancor or indignation, to the Santa Rosa chief of police. I notice your advertisers are not exactly a roll call of high-powered, bottom-line, corporate interests, which I have to assume is the reason I have read in your little, one-to-a-customer, free edition every Wednesday some of the finest, competent pieces of investigative, three-part articles I have ever encountered—the exposé of Sen. Diane Feinstein. Although I'm a lifelong Democrat, I sent the piece to her office and to Woolsey's office without a reply. I recall on the news that Feinstein was confronted with the reporting and got away with pooh-poohing it when her feet should have been shackled to the fire.
The point being that now, the press has committed to newsprint the privileges in law and position allowed to U.S. Senators and Congressmen, which is five years behind Byrne's excellent articles. They were scooped by a small, market-and-events publication. I mean, what a coup for you to scoop these journalistic puppets week after week with great news that cuts across party lines and the huge divide in our republic, with information that allows for sane conclusions coming from the truth.
Here's a senator who voted for a war in Iraq based on cherry-picked intelligence, a war that killed many women and children and several times that in those wounded, burned and maimed from our bombardments. Feinstein sits on a committee that grants her husband's companies $1.5 billion in contracts. I wonder if those companies would ever exist without those funds. Now, I understand he sits on the UC Board of Governors and invests the university's money in some other of his companies. Can't these thieves get a regular job?
I was glad to see "All Eyes on the Library" (Aug. 22) by Leilani Clark. I applaud the board of supervisors for looking at library governance and for including the various cities in the review. But they have excluded voices that need to be heard in this review.
Sonoma County Save Our Libraries has attended every commission meeting and been present at all the library advisory boards at least once for the last 16 months, and has an overview that no other group has. The library staff also has a view that is missing on the subcommittee. These voices and viewpoints have been excluded again.
Representatives from the public and library staff must be included on the subcommittee. The meetings must be open to the public.
I'm wondering how the traffic will be handled ("To Market, To Market," March 28). When I come in from Santa Rosa after 3pm on Highway 12, there's already lots of traffic. Also, what will happen to our wonderful shops in downtown Sebastopol? Is there a city plan to support businesses and help them thrive? I do like the central idea of the Barlow in my community, but I care about the welfare of all of Sebastopol.
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