Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor | Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2019: Mass shootings, straight pride, inclusion and Gallo

Mass shootings are top of mind

On Saturday night I tried going to sleep but could not due to my blood boiling because of the mass shooting that took place in El Paso, Texas, not even a week after the Gilroy Garlic Festival shooting close to home. Then this morning, I see a notification saying that another shooting has taken place in Ohio just hours after the one in Texas. When is enough enough? When will President Trump and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell call the Senate back from August recess to address these heinous acts done by white nationalist terrorists on American soil?

We need to question all presidential candidates as well on this topic. Look at the most recent Democratic debates, with only five discussing the topic during the first round and the second round not a single one. The topic of mass shootings is on every voter’s mind and the public will hold their representatives accountable to do something to make our country safer. I pray that we reach a brighter future where such horrific acts are no longer seen as a norm to future generations.

Zachery Ramos, Gustine

Straight pride divides people

Efforts for unity and tolerance and respect for individual identity are priceless. Isolating and dividing is the opposite of community. The reality is, community responsibilities never end. We are to see ourselves as neighbors and brothers and sisters. We must walk together in a covenant relationship with each other, standing alongside our neighbors and civic partners and fellow residents. We are all different and unique and of great worth and value. We are diverse in our abilities, education, politics, careers, and religious faith and lifestyles. These differences make us stronger and more flexible and resilient as a community. They also just make it more interesting.

Though sometimes challenging, it is something you work at, pray about, and sometimes need to repent over, but the bottom line is, unity is worth the struggle and the stumbling and frequently the pain. It is my deepest hope that those promoting the straight pride event at Graceada Park will reconsider and cancel, and if not, that the city of Modesto will change the venue to a safer, nonresidential area.

Bob Shook, Modesto

Taxpayers shouldn’t fund hate event

Straight Pride is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It claims to be an event celebrating Christianity and family values. It is nothing of the sort. Christianity accepts diversity and is tolerant and loving. Family values include love, working together and staying together even under the most difficult of circumstances, helping each other learn and grow. This event is the antithesis of these. It is put on by an organization that is involved in white supremacy and hate. It should not be allowed in a park that has events for families, community and organizations supporting joy and celebrations. These events are about inclusion, not exclusion.

I do believe in free speech, however appalling and misguided it may be.

Do not put this event in a residential community if it has even the slightest potential for violence. Put it where it belongs: In a corral where it can be surrounded with police presence and private security. They should be paid for upfront by the organizers. The citizens of Modesto should not be made to pay for something that promotes hate.

Christie Wolfe, Modesto

Why did Gallo weigh in?

Re “‘Straight Pride’ prompts rare reaction from Gallo” (Front Page, Aug. 1): Each of us has our opinion and we need to respect each other’s personal opinions. I’m sure that the Gallo Winery does an excellent job in every one of their departments and always strives for perfection. However, and regardless of your immense success, your company is not Modesto’s political watchdog.

Bill Jaques, Modesto