LettersOut before the playing begins
My son has been playing baseball, first in the pony league, and then in little league since t-ball. This year he played on the A's for his second year of Juniors.
We started the season on fire and then we lost a player, leaving our team with only nine players. After playing around 15 games we were informed that one of our key players had been selected for a jazz band camp and would not be here to play in the Tournament of Champions. Our coaches exhausted every possibility to fill the ninth spot, but to our shock and disappointment was told that because of league rules we were unable to fill that ninth spot with any unqualifying TOC player.
I can't tell you how heartbroken my son is, placing fourth and having to forfeit due to league rules. I feel that baseball for kids ranging from t-ball to big league shouldn't be black and white -- without those gray areas people wouldn't be well rounded. I think this league has forgotten what it is all about, for the kids to learn the fundamentals of baseball and what being on a team means. They worked for 20-plus games to place in the TOC and then to compete to be in the championship game and be their level champions. Somewhere in all the politics the game and these boys, and a few very strong girls, have been lost.
I hope in the future this league finds a way to change and remember that making no allowance for the "gray areas" has left eight very driven and extremely talented young men heartbroken.
Axis puts funds to good use
In light of the evolving financial situation at the Tri-Valley Community Foundation (TVCF), I am writing to address how TVCF funds received by Axis Community Health and many human service providers in the Tri-Valley have been used in the community.
Over various times in the past few years, Axis and other community organizations have received support from funds administered by TVCF. Many generous community members and businesses made contributions to these funds, and we are grateful for the support. I would like to assure the community that these funds were used exactly as intended by donors -- in full support of services for Tri-Valley residents. Our organizations work tirelessly to meet the growing need for basic safety net services in our community, including food, shelter, health care and services for seniors. Community support is essential to our ability to meet these ongoing (and ever growing) needs.
Like other Tri-Valley organizations, Axis maintains accurate financial records in compliance with state and federal requirements, and we are audited by independent auditors annually. We are also subject to regular audits by local and state contracting officials and we file comprehensive tax forms annually.
Axis has an active 11-member board of directors that meets monthly and provides ongoing oversight of all financial statements. These records fully document all of the good accomplished by the dollars we have received, whether through TVCF or any of our other funders and contributors. Please rest assured that these dollars have been spent correctly helping those in need.
We appreciate the generosity of all who respond to those in need, and we hope the community continues to support the good work that human service organizations are doing every day in the Tri-Valley.
Sue Compton, CEO, Axis Community Health
Examine Stark further
I read with interest the letter from the high school student, Alexandra Perelgos, on June 1, and I'm pleased some of our youth appear to be taking an active role in the political system. But Pete Stark is a prime example of what is wrong in our political system today, and hopefully students will form an opinion based upon facts rather than the baloney rhetoric he throws out when among political novices. He has become a regular on Esquire magazine's list of the "10 Worst Members of Congress."
Stark routinely has taken civility to new lows by calling a female GOP colleague "a whore for the insurance industry," a male GOP colleague "a little wimp" and "a fruitcake," suggesting that one African American Republican was "a disgrace to his race" and asserting, falsely, that another, then-Rep. J.C. Watts, fathered all his children "out of wedlock." He accused Republicans in 2007 of sending troops to Iraq "to get their heads blown off for the president's amusement."
Stark's disregard for the truth, not to mention basic decency, has been on embarrassing display in Campaign 2012. He alleged in a debate that opponent Eric Swalwell took bribes from developers. A revealing moment in his meeting with the San Francisco Chronicle was Stark's struggle to name any legislation of significance that he has steered into law since 1994. In addition, due in large part to his unsubstantiated outbursts, his own party passed him over for the leadership of the powerful Ways and Means Committee in 2010, despite his seniority.
Is Pete Stark really the type of person that we want our youth to admire?
Editor's note: David Harris of Pleasanton American Little League responded that the rules are not local, but set by Williamsport and the various Districts throughout Little League International, saying that he personally would like to see an exception in a situation like this.