Letters: June 12, 2009

More on sand v. dirt in Encinitas
Rodney Scow, in his letter to the editor, only gets his sand definition partly correct. Yes, it is based on particle size, but he conveniently leaves out a discussion of the composition of the particles. These particles have a mineral source, which usually is rock, most commonly silica (silicon dioxide). Sand composition is variable and also includes limestone (calcium carbonate, which include corals and shells), gypsum (calcium sulfate), granite, basalts, or a complex mixture of many mineral sources. It all depends on where the erosion is talking place to produce the sand. Sand can be contaminated with organic material, but sand must resist weathering, so that rules out almost all organic sources.
We could theoretically have a beach composed of gemstones, including diamonds, but this is laughable in the real world because gemstones are much too rare. Mr. Scow should himself grab some samples from the Pacific Station site. He would find particles that are too small to be technically classified as sand. In the real world, we would call it dirt because it is a mixture. A trip to the North Leucadia beaches at the time of dumping would have shown that the dirt turned the water very muddy. Sand doesn’t do that.
Unfortunately Mr. Scow has only muddied the waters. Didn’t he see the public notice in The Coast News that the city is bringing in real sand from the San Juan Capistrano area for Moonlight Beach? It would be a public embarrassment to turn the water a chocolate color at our most popular beach by bringing in dirt.

Gerald Sodomka
Cardiff-by-the-Sea

What nobody seems to be asking about Sotomayor
Every day since President Obama nominated Judge Sotomayor for a position on the Supreme Court the only topics for the news outlets is reverse discrimination or the racism. It’s become boring especially since there is an “elephant in the room” question that is not being addressed. We all know the news media has thought of this question so why are they not talking about it? The question is, “What is Judge Sotomayor’s opinion on abortion?” She is a Catholic and she will be the sixth Catholic on the court if her nomination is approved. I ask myself what this will mean to Roe v. Wade and why aren’t the news outlets talking about it? My deduction is that the discrimination and race comments are just a smokescreen to keep us from thinking about the real issue — abortion. And the fact that the news outlets are not discussing her religion and how that will affect her voting on abortion leads me to the words — fixed news.
Madison Lang
Oceanside,

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