Hispanic families

I am a Ventura-born, Oxnard-reared volunteer Korean War veteran Hispanic who has devoted most of his life in local community advocacy efforts, most of which to absolutely no avail. Oxnard city leadership is not willing to address the obvious problems of family dysfunction faced by many Hispanic residents who have come to Oxnard for a better life. It is a futile endeavor when it comes to educating their children. The parents have little or no education and less parenting skills. They send their kids to an English-language education system. The students have no educational support at home. Their learning experience ends the moment the afternoon school bell rings. In this atmosphere it is impossible for students to learn the skills to function in society to say nothing of preparing a career. Mayor Tim Flynn’s answer has been two gang injunctions, now temporarily suspended, to resolve the lack of education. Mayor Flynn has the ability to make up the difference, to establish programs to nurture the educational needs of these children, but Flynn ignores my suggestions, my pleas made over the years. He just doesn’t care, nor does the City Council. Flynn is content to regard these children as criminals and rid himself of any responsibility, however, these families contribute to the city for no return.

They pay taxes, participate in local business and provide the mass of minimum-wage labor used in the city of Oxnard. I consider Flynn’s attitude to be similar to President Donald Trump’s separation of children from their mothers at the border. Flynn cares as much about his Mexican residents as Trump does about refugees fleeing hostile environments in Latin America.

Miguel Espinosa

Share the road with ebikes

Road cyclists have used the mantra “Share the Road” for decades to remind drivers that both cars and bikes have the right to use city streets and back roads. Now, with the introduction of ebikes, there is a greater need to advocate the Share the Road mantra. The growing uses of ebikes has resulted in a new class of cyclists using bike lanes, bike paths and city streets. Both motorists and traditional road cyclists need to welcome ebike riders to our roads.

Traditional road cyclists should support the new ebike users for a number of reasons. For one, it is a whole lot easier to share the road with ebike users versus individuals in 2,000-plus-pound vehicles. Secondly, the more ebikes users there are, the more likely cities and towns will create bike lanes and bike paths that make us all safer.

Some traditional road cyclists consider ebike users cheaters, and they would be if they were competing in races like the Tour of California or Tour de France. However, when ebike users are commuting to work or riding for fun they are no different then traditional cyclists that use the roads and bike paths for recreation and commuting.

I have been a road cyclist for over 30 years and a member of the Channel Island Bike Club. Many people that might never ride a traditional bike can now hop on their ebikes and see the world like we do. Let’s share the road with them.

Barry Cole

Shared passion for VUSD

Why am I volunteering as Deborah Meyer-Morris’ campaign manager for VUSD school board?

I am the last person you would ever think would get involved with politics. But as a teacher within VUSD for more than two decades, I have seen my share of triumphs and tragedies. Time and time again I have wondered why VUSD has continued archaic practices which I have seen previously streamlined during my years working for LAUSD.

I have known Deborah for almost 10 years. We met at Anacapa Middle School when I was a Two-Way Immersion Spanish science teacher and she was the PTO co-president. I was a former PTA president in Ojai. From the beginning we found commonalities in our dedication to our families and our communities. We quickly merged a tight network between us since our daughters, Savanna and Dayle, were driven with the same passion, which was to represent Ventura County throughout the state of California as Ventura County 4-H All Stars, countywide youth leaders.

Deborah and I combined our unique skill set together to support and empower not just our daughters, but other Ventura County youth through our extensive involvement in Ventura County 4-H where I was a 4-H club community leader and Deborah was on the 4-H County Council. During this time, we realized that the path of fruition for a young person toward their goal in life is arduous and in need of adult supporters. Using my teaching experience, Deborah’s legal skills, and our shared passion for positive youth engagement and service learning through mentorship, we have been able to challenge obstacles, communicate student needs in the political arena and work towards developing more inclusive policies.

Since our daughters have completed college, moved into careers and are enjoying their empowered single lives, they are less in need of our support. As a result we have turned our focus on other young adults who need continued support, honest answers to their questions and a fair playing field so that they too can reach their goals and find success.

Deborah has a strong passion to help VUSD become a student-centered district which actively engages parents as partners in obtaining educational equity for all students. As a teacher, I know VUSD will appreciate the focus on detail and genuine insight into solving complex problems which Deborah will bring to the VUSD school board.

Monica Stanley

Could have been prevented

My name is Casey Riccardi, I am 23 years young and I have lived in Simi Valley my entire life. On Nov. 28, 2017, my life was flipped upside down. I was diagnosed with brain cancer (astrocytoma) and I was told I would NEVER be cancer-free, but what my doctors told me next was the real kicker … my neuro-oncologist told me that  the reason I have such a rare form of cancer is because I grew up in Simi Valley. He then began to explain Rocketdyne to me and how I am a victim of the biggest nuclear meltdown in U.S. history. I had never even heard about Rocketdyne before that day. Now … Rocketdyne  is  my  worst enemy. How can something that we know is causing cancer, especially pediatric cancer, still not be taken care of?! All of the pain and all of the death that Rocketdyne has caused could have been prevented.

Casey Riccardi
Simi Valley


Re: Aug. 18 edition of VCReporter

How come you geniuses let your article on SSFL end in mid-sentence (P15)? For once, you have something worth reading about and this is how you handle it. Have you ever heard of the concepts of editorial review and oversight? Apparently not!

Andy Lendacky

Editor’s note: Due to a production modification before press and after editorial review, the story layout changed. The missing word on page 9: “contamination.” It should have read: “And it is precisely the promise to do that which is being broken by the state toxics agency and the polluters responsible for the contamination.”

Answer to a Prayer

Your article (“Food obsessed,” feature, July 27) was an answer to a prayer. I joined the Oxnard FA group in July of last year. I have lost 55 pounds and my life has changed sooo extensively that it’s hard to explain. Our little Saturday morning Oxnard group started in April of last year.

It’s a small group of six to 12 people, but it definitely passed the message on to me. I found out about FA after praying for help with my food addiction. The next day I met a woman who had prayed the day before for someone to help. She became my sponsor.

I see the devastating consequences of the disease of food addiction every day and wonder what can be done to help others. In FA we can’t promote ourselves, however, we can inform. Just like in AA we follow the traditions that say that we must remain personally anonymous at the level of press, radio and films.

I’ve been praying that somehow people that need FA find out about us.

I was shocked and delighted today, while going into The Green Thumb, to see this article. Right away I took pictures and sent them to all the people in my group.

I wanted to thank you and let you know that we meet in Oxnard, Saturday mornings at 9 a.m., St. John’s Hospital, the basement, conference rooms 5 and 6.

A few of us would be happy to meet with you and tell you our stories if you are at all interested. Please feel free to visit our meeting.

Thank you so much for answering my prayer.

Food addiction free
(asked to remain anonymous)

Logical solution to CO2 problem

It is pretty well agreed, by most global warming experts, that Co2 is a BIGGIE contributor to the problem, among DOZENS of other contributing causes. I have a logical solution to the problem, and it involves TREES and MILLIONS of Americans.
During WWII, millions of Americans (young and old) were involved in rounding up scrap metal and rubber for the war effort. It was extremely successful and helped our military industries produce the weapons and vehicles needed by our armed forces.
With the foregoing in mind, why not have a MASSIVE, NATIONWIDE, WWII-STYLE effort, involving MILLIONS of citizens (young and old) to plant MILLIONS OF TREES? Trees thrive on Co2 and guess what folks? They produce OXYGEN!
So, by planting MILLIONS of trees, with MILLIONS of volunteers nationwide, a massive amount of Co2 would be replaced with OXYGEN!
Can it be done? YES! Will it be done? NOT LIKELY! Why? We MIGHT have to rely on politicians, in the District of Crime (DC) to get it started, with appropriate funding and/or legislation. The alternative is go get THOUSANDS of organizations involved in the nationwide tree planting effort: Elks, Rotary Club, Masons, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, schools (elementary thru high school), and thousands of others. Who could possibly
get that many groups together to do anything other than squabble with each other?
So there it is folks. What do you think about this LOGICAL idea for solving the CO2 aspect of global warming?  Our very survival on this planet is at stake to keep us from turning into another Venus!

John Jay

Killer climate change

The heat waves, wildfires, floods and rising of the oceans have begun. Climate change is upon us

If there is any human history left when the time comes to make a reckoning, President Trump and his political and business cronies who call climate change a hoax for their own selfish purposes will be seen as contributing to the deaths of millions if not billions of human beings.

Will they be judged in the same way history judges Hitler, Stalin and Mao Zedong?

Clive Leeman

Can’t wait it out

I work at a golf course. You know growing up I didn’t know what my dad thought or was but I knew I didn’t want to be like that. Later I understood that what he was saying was bad at best and racist at worst. But what to do? So I thought that well, as a country, we’ll outgrow that, that eventually every one of my dad’s generation will be dead. And with them, ignorance and racial intolerance. In other words all the crackers, who you can’t convince anyway, would be dead. Then the other day a gentleman came into the golf shop and he said I needed to come with him cause there was something in the bathroom I needed to see. So I locked the shop and went with him to the men’s bathroom. He pointed out that in one of the stalls someone had written on the exposed cardboard, beneath the chrome metal holder of the toilet seat liners, cardboard container. I don’t know what it said cause as soon as I saw the N word I tore that piece of cardboard out of there.

I remember thinking “Jesus.” Several thoughts went through my head, amongst them, disgust, that it was one of our white golfers; that my current thinking, or thought, is correct. I’ve had my current thought for years but this is the first time I have tried to shared it, in print, in a public forum. And that thought is that we cannot wait it out. In our homes, our churches and in our schools we need to talk all the time about equality and inequality. Talk about the crackers that still live in America. Educate or shun them. I don’t have the solution. But everyone in our United States should know, be taught every day, that prejudice is wrong, that it divides us, that that is what ignorant people believe. That maybe it’s not their fault, and that it is never too late to be enlightened. And that you and I will not hang out with, and certainly not play golf with, anyone that has those beliefs.

As long as it is easier to have friends, gain an advantage over a coworker, male or female, in the work place or just make you feel better about yourself by being a racist, misogynistic dumb a**, people will continue to be so. Maybe someone you know.

Bill Logan

Our carelessness

It is sometimes said that the wealthy of the Earth, whose own carelessness has brought about global warming, must necessarily be afflicted themselves by its effects before they consent to reduce it.

To many of us in Southern California, that time has come. When every month is hotter than its namesake of last year; when our gardens, farms and orchards wilt, and we cannot spare the water to revive them; when crops run short in the market; when we can scarcely take a dog for a walk for fear of overheating it (and ourselves); when we cannot go hiking, take a bicycle or even “beat the heat” at the beach or the swimming pool, for fear of sunstroke en route; the time is indeed come to draw down pollution from the atmosphere, install solar panels on every roof and replace all internal-combustion engines with electric motors.

Siddharth Mehrotra