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Opinion

Letters

(continued from page 9)

whose votes cannot be bought.

We need leaders who will listen to the entire community. Re-elect Matt Sullivan and Cindy McGovern for good government and the integ- rity of Pleasanton.

Billie Otis, Pleasanton

Gay marriage doesn’t weaken ‘traditional’ marriage

Dear Editor,

whether or not a marriage fails: “Of women who got married when they were younger than 18, almost two-thirds got divorced, compared with about a third of those married at age 20 or older” (NCHS).

Marilyn, sexual orientation has nothing more to do with a person’s commitment to family than does the color of their skin. I am a married heterosexual mother of two and I will not support any proposition that seeks to exclude any group from the legal right to marry. My children have grown up in a world where women can vote, and where African Americans and Caucasians can ride the same bus. I will not join you in taking steps backwards.

live any way they choose but they do not have the right to demand that society redefine marriage in order to validate their lifestyle.

The negative ramifications of legalized same-sex marriage are real. In Massachusetts, where same- sex marriage is legal, the Catholic Diocese of Boston has chosen to close Catholic Charities rather than be forced to arrange adoptions for same-sex couples. This is only one example of the rights of the many being usurped by the few. Those of us who support Proposition 8 are not against civil rights for anyone but we do wish to restore the definition of marriage to what it has always been: between one man and one woman.

In the continuing debate over the Weekly’s decision to include a same sex couple in the Weddings section, Marilyn Ludt claims that “commitment to marriage and fam- ily will be weakened” (by same sex marriage). I have previously heard this sentiment echoed and have always wondered on what statistics such claims are based? With same sex marriage being a legal choice only recently, how can such statis- tics even exist?

“Traditional” marriage between a man and woman has existed for ages and so we do have the stats on that. The National Center for Health Statistics reports that the marriage rate is 7.5 per 1,000 total population. Divorce rate: 3.6 per 1,000 population (46 report- ing states and D.C.). Age at mar- riage seems to be the indicator of

Julie Giessle , Pleasanton

Vote ‘yes’ on Prop. 8

Dear Editor,

I am a little puzzled at the lack of outrage among Californians over the action by our state supreme court to legalize same-sex mar- riage. Proposition 8 proposes add- ing a formal amendment to our state constitution defining mar- riage as between one man and one woman.

Those opposing Proposition 8 have tried to put a negative spin on the issue with inflammatory and unfounded arguments that existing rights would be taken away from domestic partnerships and hard- ships would be imposed on gay couples. This is simply not true. Consenting adults have the right to

Jane Barlow, Pleasanton

Pentin a fresh, positive force for Council

Dear Editor,

I am one of many who urge everyone to vote for Jerry Pentin for the Pleasanton City Council. I have known him personally for more than seven years and witnessed his active work for our city and for many char- itable organizations here. We know about his leadership in the Parks & Recreation Commission, his work on the Firehouse Arts Center, the Veterans Hall and his support of developing more businesses in downtown and in the Hacienda Business Park. Jerry is a family man, married for 24 years, and a 17-year resident of Pleasanton. He

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will continue to act on preserving open space, affordable housing and to solve our difficult traffic prob- lems. He will bring a fresh, positive force to our City Council to get the many tasks completed with no fur- ther delays. Let’s elect Jerry Pentin to the Pleasanton City Council.

Paul E.T. Jensen, Pleasanton

Vote Arkin for school board

Dear Editor,

I am voting for Valerie Arkin for the Pleasanton school board and I encourage other voters to do the same. Arkin has proven her com- mitment to the community and shown her talents in her work on two other boards, the Tri-Valley YMCA and the Pleasanton Library Commission. In these roles, Arkin worked with other community members to listen, gather informa- tion and make sound decisions on behalf of other Pleasanton resi- dents. These experiences give her an edge over some other candidates who have not had the experience of working with others on a board.

Furthermore, Arkin’s graduate business degree places her in good stead to develop an effective budget for Pleasanton schools, balancing resources to retain top-notch teach- ers and fine programs. I encourage voters to look into Arkin’s candida- cy and seek her out at the Farmers’ Market to meet her personally. Voters will find an intelligent, per- sonable candidate who listens care- fully and who is fully committed to the success of Pleasanton’s stu- dents. Please note that Arkin is not an “activist” candidate seeking a place on the board to implement her own agenda: Arkin will listen, ask good questions, research with due diligence and make decisions with the benefit of Pleasanton students in mind.

Sheri Scarborough, Pleasanton

PP, QQ not similar to 1992 citizen effort

Dear Editor,

A letter to the editor two weeks ago suggested the current PP/QQ initiative situation is similar to the 1992 Pleasanton Ridge debate. However, the current situation is different, and to suggest it is similar to 1992 is doing a disservice to Pleasanton voters who are consider- ing PP and QQ. In 1992, the pro- developer council-sponsored initia- tive was clearly not in Pleasanton’s interest—thousands of homes were proposed with no quid-pro-quo for Pleasanton, clearly saddling us

with ation both

infrastructure costs and ruin-

of

the

Ridge.

This

time,

initiatives

purport

to

protect

ridgelines, ity of life.

hillsides, and our qual- There are people I have

long

respected—all

known

for

past

efforts

on

preserving

our

hillsides—

who

are

on

opposite

sides

of

the

PP / QQ debate. (Tarver, Sullivan, Arkin, Bengston, etc.) That alone should tell

Dennis, Combs, you this

is

not

as

clear-cut

as

the

1992

issue.

We are fortunate to have an intel- ligent and involved community. The full text of PP and QQ is in the

sample ballot to help you decide where you stand. I found it much easier reading than I expected, and easier than dealing with all the “spin” being created. Personally, I am concerned about PP because of the exemption for 10 or fewer units and the wording on defini- tion of a housing unit. I also had concerns about how QQ came to be on the ballot, and applaud that Matt Sullivan has the integrity to acknowledge citizen’s wishes (he has my vote). When initiatives are this close I tend to vote no on both. However, what swayed my decision pro-QQ is that PP’s key promoters, Kay Ayala and Steve Brozosky, moved and voted for the huge water park in 2004, against citizen’s wishes, and thus were voted off the City Council.

Mick Hanou, Pleasanton

Vote ‘yes’ on QQ

Dear Editor,

Measure QQ has been placed on the ballot in Pleasanton by open space and trail advocates and com- munity leaders. It ensures passage of a hillside preservation measure that will safeguard opportunities to receive hundreds of acres of open space dedications worth more than $15 million, including main- tenance and endowments for future parks and trails.

Your “yes” vote on Measure QQ is the only vote that ensures a publicly accessible greenbelt and trail system in the hills southeast of Pleasanton. It is the best way to protect this greenbelt from private large lot development.

Measure QQ reaffirms policies and a program in the city’s current General Plan. It preserves spec- tacular scenic hillside and ridge views. It protects continuous areas of open space from intrusion by urban development and provides for trails on this open space. Measure QQ provides for the continuation of grazing and agriculture. And it con- firms the 29,000-unit housing cap.

Vote “yes” on Measure QQ.

Barbara E. Hempill, Pleasanton

PP will protect views

Dear Editor,

Measure PP will give instant protections to our view shed in Pleasanton by prohibiting develop- ment on the top 100 feet of a rid- geline and by prohibiting grading in the steep areas over 25 per- cent slope. The tactic employed by our current mayor and two councilmembers to allow ridgetop development in exchange for open space is unacceptable. Tim Hunt (former editor and associate pub- lisher of the Tri-Valley Herald) got it absolutely correct in his Oct. 5 Tri-Valley Herald article when he stated, ìwhatís important to most people is view shed—open space that they can see. Most donít need to hike on it. Itís the psychological benefit of open hillsides and views.

The most cost-effective way to accomplish this is through private ownership and conservation ease- ments, not city ownership. City ownership, with the associated liability and maintenance costs, is very expensive.

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