Heroes of History
What an extraordinary human being! ("Triumph in the Sky," Jan. 11.) I am so proud to have known two of these brave and wonderful American pioneer airmen. I formulated a unit on pioneer black aviators and was privileged enough to have one of these historic figures accept an invitation to come to my classroom for my third-grade children to meet, listen to and talk with. What an exciting experience for us all, and one I shall always cherish.
Pride and Prejudice
Thank you very much for your article on the local Tuskegee Airman, James Goodwin. There is an interesting parallel story concerning African Americans who trained as airborne troops. They, too, were separately trained and then were unwanted in white units. The result is that many of them were assigned to the newly formed U.S. Forest Service smokejumper's organization, where they likewise distinguished themselves. As a bit of irony, many of the whites they served beside were conscientious objectors, who were given this noncombat duty. A friend of mine was one of the latter, coming from a very prejudiced Midwestern background, and his association with these men changed his attitudes toward minorities for the rest of his life.
At Pebble Beach golf course, there is a monument to all the winners of the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am golf tournament. If you like golf, you know all about Pebble Beach and the AT&T tournament. (If you don't like golf, then trust me, the AT&T tournament is a big deal among golfers.)
But the monument only has room to list the winners until the year 2045.
Call it the prophecy of the golf monument. The end of the world is the day after the 2045 AT&T Pro-Am tournament. Isaac Newton guessed 2060, but what did he know?
Opposing CVS in Sebastopol
I am writing to suggest an alternate option for the development of the Pellini property in Sebastopol. Consider this: "One Common Ground Co-Op: Of the People, by the People, for the People."
Elements of this option would support the ideals of the Cittaslow Movement, as well as truly allow Sebastopol to shine as a gateway city.
It would promote a mixed-use development of the property. The funding vision includes an online global occupy pledge drive and a membership drive to generate necessary funds, and would include a matching-funds drive with the goal of keeping the property member-owned.
Included in this vision would be designated overnight parking for RVs traveling to and from the coast, generating potential new business for Benedetti's next door. A youth hostel for the curious explorer has been suggested by the SESAW committee.
A few of the unique elements of this option include rotating art installations both local and global; a giant outdoor chess set (found in Christchurch, New Zealand); footbridges crossing over North Petaluma Avenue and Highway 12; and cob structures for gathering and vending. A community-driven economy will naturally evolve from this vision. The U.N. has declared 2012 the International Year of the Cooperatives, giving this vision an even greater chance of success.
Where did Specialized get their technology from? ("Derailed," Jan. 11.) It's like car companies suing each other for pattern rights. It all comes from the same information pool.
Update: The jury in the Volagi / Specialized case last week tossed out all but one charge against Volagi, and awarded damages to Specialized in the symbolic amount of exactly $1.
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