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  • By Sal Moretti

Richard Beene’s comments from his Dec. 30 “Bakersfield Observed” column about an illegal dump site at the Old China Grade Landfill — and his proposal to name a dump site after me — beg a response. It also gives me an opportunity to go local after too frequently commenting on national politics.

  • By Brik McDill

From the Dec. 16 USA Today: “Lopez, 57, a longtime addict, was serving a life sentence in prison for a third-strike methamphetamine conviction until last year, when he was released by Proposition 47, which downgraded drug possession and most small thefts to misdemeanors.

  • David Collins

As I rumble through my neighborhood as a volunteer tracking down litter, I meet the stray animals who haunt our streets. Without shelter they are hunted by predators, broiled during the summer and slammed by the worst of winter. Even though their thin bodies may be wrapped with dirty fur the…

  • William D Bezdek

John Pryor’s Jan. 2 Community Voices article “It’s time to save us from the death spiral of Obamacare” has nothing to do with “us” or “Obamacare.” It is not even about providing healthcare. It is solely about protecting the profits of the private healthcare insurance industry. Pryor’s errors…

  • Patsy Ouellette

Mark Zuckerberg could save himself a lot of money, $3 billion to be exact. The Facebook founder and his wife, Priscilla, have pledged to donate $3 billion to medical research institutions with the goal of curing all disease by the end of the 21st century. The operative word here is “cure.” C…

  • Gary A. Kovacic

Large transportation projects in the United States have historically met with political resistance, physical challenges, and winners and losers. One of the best examples of this is the Transcontinental Railroad, the first spikes of which were driven in 1863 during the turmoil of the Civil Wa…

  • By Brik McDill

Let’s all take a slow, deep breath regarding the tragic fatal shooting of Francisco Serna. I can honestly say thank god it wasn’t I who had to make that nanosecond decision about whether or not to fire that fatal round on that fatal night.

  • By Sonya Christian, Horace Mitchell, and Bryon Schaefer

Kern County’s educational partners have never been more connected, more efficient, more effective, or more collaborative than now. Students have even greater access to college, and more students are college and career-ready as they leave the KHSD. College transfer rates from Bakersfield Coll…

  • Fernando Jara

One of the exciting parts of my life as an intelligence agent during the War on Terror was being trained with firearms by some of the best instructors in the country. It was during this training that I found out rather quickly that knowing how to pull a trigger is not the same as knowing whe…

  • Brenda Lewis

Each day, Kern County classrooms are filled with qualified and caring teachers who provide students with high-quality opportunities to learn. In the Kern High School District, these opportunities are particularly designed to ensure that students are college and career ready.

  • By Ted R. Page

California has been in a drought eight of the last 10 years. This ongoing drought condition has resulted in a positive political response. On Dec. 13, Congress passed drought legislation under the leadership of House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, with the help of Congressman David Valadao.

  • By Alvin Sandrini

The Dec. 5 letter to the editor, “You sure there’s a teacher shortage?” questioned The Californian’s article about a teacher shortage in California (“Report: Teacher shortage even worse than thought,” Dec. 1). The letter writer offered his opinion based upon the fact his wife, an experienced…

  • By Beatris Espericueta Sanders

Kern County’s top two industries are agriculture and oil. For centuries, these two industries have dominated job production and have evolved through countless regulations and droughts to be very efficient industries.

  • By Nathan Petty

In a Nov. 19 CalMatters article, “Jerry Brown’s pension reforms have done little to rein in costs,” readers were educated about the financial challenges and political difficulties that we must confront and overcome if we are ever to truly reform public pension systems. The article does not l…

  • James F. Burns

The events of the past few minutes coursed through John Anderson’s mind like the hellish nightmare that it was. He had been assigned to set up chairs on the ship’s main deck for the Sunday morning worship service. His brother Jake and many others were still sound asleep below deck.

  • By Mark C. Salvaggio

There is a drastic need to reform Kern County government by streamlining its operations, scrubbing all department budgets with audits and eliminating as much waste as possible. The County is in the midst of another financial crisis, a $44 million general fund budget deficit and a $12 million…

  • Jack Hernandez

When I came to BC many years ago, I saw by the front door of the administration building a plaque dated 1955, with the words “Only the Educated are Free.” I was beginning my teaching career in English and philosophy and was struck by this statement expressing the ideal served by Bakersfield …

  • By Arturo S. Rodriguez

The contributions to American history and culture by people of color, women, members of the LGBT community and their allies are all too often overlooked in history books, even today. One way to ensure that our children understand the contributions of all members of our society — even if they…

  • By Angelo Haddad

Donald Trump won the presidential election by a margin of 306 electoral votes to 253 for Hillary Clinton. A week after the election, Sen. Barbara Boxer introduced a bill to abolish the Electoral College system and base future presidential elections on the popular vote because she felt that s…

  • Geoffrey B King

I have long been concerned for America. These past 16 plus years we’ve seen declining freedoms and liberties, increased government regulation, and the choking of industries that provide the foundation of our country.

  • By Guillermo Ceja

One wonders why columnist Lois Henry is so insistent about proclaiming the safety of using oilfield wastewater for irrigating crops (“Oilfield water proves safe for irrigation – again,” Oct.15; “Even more testing confirms safety of treated oilfield water” Oct. 29).

  • Steve Hanson

Nov. 8 is a day I never forget. It is the day that a part of my eternal optimism, and a piece of my heart and soul, was lost. As I write this, I have not slept all night. I’m glad that I’m retreating to my spiritual home, Yosemite, for some quiet, personal reflection.