Just when I think I have read the best story yet from Michael Collins, he came out with “White Blight,” June 26, 2008. This story is my favorite to date with details of possible chromium contamination in Runkle Canyon and Dayton Canyon — remember Erin Brockevich?

As a former worker at the Santa Susana Field Laboratory and a cancer survivor, I have been following the great stories from Michael for years.  We are at a critical time right now in the community with two canyons about to be approved for development.  This great story might be the straw that broke the camels back in stopping KB Homes and Centex from putting residents on contaminated land.  Thank you VC Reporter and Michael Collins.

Bonnie Klea
West Hills

Vegetarian 4th of July


Whatever happened to the good old days when the worst things we had to fear on the 4th of July were traffic jams and wayward fireworks? According to our government’s Meat & Poultry Hotline, this year’s top fear is food poisoning by those nasty E. coli and Salmonella bugs lurking in inadequately grilled hamburgers and hot dogs. Of course, they don’t bother to mention that high-temperature grilling that kills the bugs also forms cancer-causing com-pounds.

Luckily, a bunch of enterprising food manufacturers and processors have met this challenge head-on by developing a great variety of healthful, delicious, and convenient, veggie burgers and soy dogs. These new foods don’t harbor nasty pathogens or cancer-causing compounds. They don’t even carry cholesterol, saturated fats, drugs, or pesticides. And, they are available in the frozen food section of every supermarket.

This 4th of July offers a great opportunity to declare our independence from the meat industry and to share wholesome veggie burgers and soy dogs with our family and friends.

Vince Helferich

Global warming art

Congratulations to Alec Loorz and his classmates at the Ventura Charter School for their interest, hard work and dedication to the cause of combating global warming.

Their concern will undoubtedly lead them to a lifetime of exploration, education and protection of the world around them. The project will attract a great deal of attention and discussion about climate change, which is on everyone’s mind.

For those of us fortunate enough to live in Ventura, the beauty of its shoreline and promenade is an outstanding treasure.

However, rather than maintain the project at the beach through the long winter months until next April as has been discussed, I suggest that once the summer season has passed and Labor Day approaches, the poles, which will have survived their worthy purpose, be transferred to a more populous venue, perhaps the Marina.

This will draw greater attention to the message of the project and leave the promenade free to focus on the natural beauty of the trees, the sky, the grass, the blossom, the bushes that you people like Alec are working so hard to preserve.

Virginia Donohue