Albion Monitor /Commentary


All correspondence should be sent to We reserve the right to edit letters as needed.

Transformed News
With this medium you have transformed "news" into an almost interactive event no newspaper could come close to capturing. I have been following this story for the past few weeks. I read the account of Bear Lincoln's surrender, I've gleaned the entire history of Round Valley, seen the accounts of harrassed witnesses and felt as though I was reading the story of a great action novel. Only this isn't fiction. This is happening now. The story unfolds before my eyes and my experience of these events can't be compared to any movie or TEEVEE show.

It is extrordinary.

This kind of newsmaking has the potential of galvanizing and helping to shape events like no other. This is the kind of stuff only hard core investigative reporters could conjure in their wildest fantasy. Keep the dream alive.

Thank you all for putting this together, and Mark Heimann, you deserve great respect for work on this remarkable event.

One of your first Fans,
Karen Leonard

Journalism in Hypertext
It seems to me that you have succeeded quite well in developing a practical hypertext format for journalistic stories -- your "Round Valley" feature on Sept 2 issue refers. Congratulations -- I already sent a message to some fellow journalists and researchers here in Tampere, Finland, and suggested they also might take a look.

Pasi Karonen

News on Native Issues
Found your address through the alt.native newsgroup and wanted to let you know that I find your "electronic newspaper" a good source of unbiased information. Your coverage of different native issues going on presently allows me to keep up-to-date on the happenings in the U.S. Here in Eastern Ontario we don't get alot of U.S. native issue news. Even though I live close to the St.Regis Mohawk Reserve in NY, I find it easier to get the information I seek through sources like your newspaper. Keep up the great work!.

Carmel Vivier

Web Brings Students Away From Textbooks
This is just to thank you for your efforts in putting together this wonderful Web newspaper. I have been able to send one article to two friends of mine living with cancer, and have otherwise found the presentation very clear and easy to get around, not to mention the links.

I am a 'naturalised' Australian, was born in England and spent a few years in America, but have been teaching at a University in Japan for 4 years now, mainly about indigenous people and their history since the incursion of external cultures. Now with the Web I am able to use material that is current (the regular press is owned by too many vested interests) and give them a sense of the living environment of real people like themselves and get them out of textbooks and hopefully onto the streets.

I will be a regular visitor to the Home Page and look forward to making a positive contribution in some small way.

Kind regards and all strength to you,
Marcus Cornelius

Error in "Indian Wars"
George Snyder made a serious error in his article "The Indian Wars are not Over." He claims that the first whites to have contact with the California Indians was 150 years ago. This is false. Whites came to California over 200 years ago with the coming of the Spanish. Spaniards are white.

Robert Seward
Actually, Snyder wrote of the first whites in Round Valley, but you are correct. The first contact California Natives had with whites came over 400 years ago, when Drake and other europeans began exploring for new lands to conquer.
-- Editor
Internet Helps De-Mystify Cancer
It was so good to see Ceil Sinnex's article, "Patient, Heal Thyself," in praise of the Internet's contribution to de-mystifying cancer and opening doors of communication to people involved with a cancer diagnosis. As Ceil says, cancer can be frightening and alienating. As a health care professional, I am convinced that connection with others is essential to coping with any crisis, especially cancer, which we all know, is high on the list of stress producers.

Ten years ago, when my sister was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, she searched desperately, but unsuccessfully, for an ovarian cancer support group. Two years later, when I was diagnosed with the same disease, I had to form a group myself because there were still none. Today, there is an informative, supportive, caring ovarian cancer discussion group online. Thanks to the Internet this is one of a growing number of such groups, bringing people together to laugh, to cry, and to learn from one another, in order to deal with life threatening illness.

I thank you for making Ms. Sinnex's article available and I look forward to other such pieces in the Monitor in the near future.

Selma Mirsky

Local Press Ignores Important Issues
I think the local press has done a disservice to people of Sonoma County by failing to report something which directly impacts everyone who drives a vehicle on county roads.

Since early this spring the CHP has been equipped, at county expense, with VASCAR. This is a type of RADAR that looks both directions from a moving patrol car. You may have noticed the small signs added to various speed limit signposts stating "RADAR enforced County wide"

No doubt the board of Supervisors decided on this move as a way of bolstering a county budget that is in trouble. I would like to know how much money was spent by the county to equip the CHP with the RADAR used in Sonoma County.

(If the Supervisors were looking for a revenue generator, They could have declared the fine for "Failure to signal your intentions" to be $ 300.00, then begin enforcement by having the CHP write up the Sonoma County Sheriffs.)

I am also curious why the local press finds no interest in the recent audit of the EPA grant funding for construction of the Russian River Wastewater Treatment Plant.

The EPA found that after it funded construction of the plant with a design capacity near 5 million gallons a day, the typical flow is closer to 2.25 MGD. The EPA then requested the county return 45 percent of the approximately $9.5 million grant as that was the unused capacity of the plant they paid for.

This led to a decision by the north coast regional water quality board to withdraw their endorsement of the county's application for state money to make the improvments ordered by the RWQCB at the Forestville & Graton treatment plants. Instead, the county was encouraged to build a pipeline from Graton to Forestville to the Russian River plant so as to decrease the "unused" capacity of the grant funded plant, thereby decreasing the amount the EPA wants returned. (What a concept!)

Things like this happen where you have a board of Supervisors who also happen to be the board of all the sewer districts in the unincorporated areas of the county. Because of this situation the Board of Supe's acts in the county's interest vs. that of the people in the district.

Whew! I better stop now. Anyhow, It would be refreshing to see any component of the press take an interest in these issues. What I have seen of the print media around the county in the past nine years, is less than satisfying.

Joe Filke

Albion Monitor September 18, 1995 (

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