You said it: Changing the name of the Russian River is a touchy subject
July 2022 Letters to the Editor
Sonoma County Gazette readers chimed in this past month. More readers added their thoughts to a two-month discussion on whether or not the name of the Russian River should be changed, including on how the discourse should continue (or not continue). The biggest takeaway from this month’s letters? Are we able to engage in big discussions about change with civility and understanding?
Happy July y’all. Send your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Great book recommendation
I enjoyed reading Diane McCurdy’s book review of “Estrellas” and will look forward to reading the book. You are your readers may be interested to know that there are in face several routes through Europe of the El Camino de Santiago. There is one originating in the southeast of Spain.
In fact, it passes next to our house there and many pilgrims and trekkers go by.
Not to Steve O’Rourke: 33 down clue, ‘extinct and flightless’ answer should not be ‘rheas.’ They are happily living in South America, as well as in feral populations in Germany and England. Now if you’d gone with dodos, I’d agree with you!
Teacher at Bellevue School
Change letters policy
Perhaps you ought to eliminate your gag-me-with-a-spoon rules for letters to the editor. That way you might receive some with a little substance. The May letters are a perfect of example of writers spewing out their nonsense, or, in the case of the person who wants an anything goes approach to vacation rental permits, simply displaying a self-centered approach to a community problem.
First, the notion of changing the name of a river because the country for which it is named is currently invading another country. Should Sebastopol residents also vote for a new name? After all, Sevastopol is a city in (gasp) Russia. No doubt there are more constructive ways to support the people of Ukraine (and all the other countries currently under foreign invasion or occupation).
Then there is the person From Utah who has come up with a new way to trash women. Attack us for behaving like men? Tell us we have overstepped our role, which is to be loving and feminine?
And, of course, the Monte Rio homeowner who objects to limiting the number of vacation rentals because — he claims— that would only profit out-of-town resort owners and hotel chains. This fellow ignores the fact that most local resorts are owned by individuals who reside in Sonoma County. Yes, it’s true that vacation rentals used to involve locals who rented out an extra room, or an out-building, on their own property. But now most of them are owned by those out-of-towners to whom he objects.
Finally, seven years after the County began work on the Winery Event Ordinance, the Planning Commission approved a draft to go before the Board of Supervisors for adoption in September. We appreciate the efforts involved in developing a balanced Ordinance with clear parameters that level the playing field for new applicants seeking to host events; while addressing noise, traffic and other disruptions to rural character.
We can no longer afford to ignore the limited carrying capacity of our roads, diminishing water resources and degradation or rural character. The Supervisors and the Tourism Board are aware of tourism's external costs and have an obligation to address infrastructure and public safety needs. Sonoma County is at a crossroads: large scale developments, part-time homeowners and vacation rentals are tearing the social fabric of our communities. Rural character is what differentiates Sonoma County from other wine regions. The Board's upcoming approval of this Ordinance will be a positive step toward preventing our County from becoming a victim of "tourism success." After a decade of unfettered growth leading to approval of nearly 500 wineries/tasting rooms, a clear and balanced Winery Event Ordinance will protect the County's scenic, rural qualities for visitors and residents alike.
Padi Selwyn, Co-chair
Neighbors to Preserve Rural Sonoma County
Staying at my daughter’s house located near the fault line in Larkfield Wikiup. On either side of their property just off Carriage Lane, two large trees suddenly came down today, a fifty foot plus for on the west side early this morning in perfectly still weather, and a large live oak just to the southeast of their property around 5:30pm in very light breezes. Are there any other reports of trees falling over today without provocation? I’m wondering if this is leading up to an earthquake?