Dear Editor:Ahhh. The plastic bag thorn-in-my-side rears its ugly head yet again. ("Plastic Bags Banned in Parts of County," 11/18/10) Can someone please explain to me why banning plastic bags is a better solution to the problem of such waste in the ocean rather than, say, fixing the inefficient drain pipes with smaller wire mesh? Banning a useful and inexpensive product is the very opposite of progress, and heavily promoting these cloth bags - some of which have been found to contain lead and all of which should now come with the warning: "Must wash after every use to avoid deadly e coli virus" - has obviously not deterred the average person who continues to look for convenience in our ever-increasing busy lives. So force must be used! This tyrannical act will directly affect jobs and the poor who cannot necessarily afford to buy the paper bags - which we were told years ago by environmentalists we couldn't use because of all the rainforest trees being destroyed (hence the creation of plastic bags). Why do we continue to allow these people to control our lives? I'm sick of the so-called "energy-efficient" light bulbs we are now forced to buy that are more expensive, full of dangerous mercury, and are less bright than incandescent bulbs. I'm sick of politicians putting the "rights" of animals above the rights of people. Banning the sale of big-screen TV's in the state? Phasing out fireplaces? This is madness. Since the radical environmentalists and the politicians they employ have no problem forcing me to change my behavior, how about a little tit-for-tat. I would like to propose a law that bans any and all environmentalists and, hence, donors to the Democrat party, from owning an automobile. These people must be forced to practice what they preach and only take public transportation or ride their bikes everywhere they go. That, at least, would free up our highway traffic congestion and clear up our smog overnight. Do I hear an Amen? -- Alaina Niemann, Downey

********** Published: December 2, 2010 - Volume 9 - Issue 33