Ward Elliott
via email

Old Horror Story

I had my first child at Sharp Mary Birch Hospital 24 or 25 years ago (“The Unkindest Cut,” Cover Story, December 15). I was told at that time by my physician there that I could either have an emergency C-section or I could die, and that it really didn’t matter to him, he was getting paid either way. It’s almost 30 years later and I’ve still not forgotten that.

Marilyn Dean
Rolando

Learn, Then Choose

I have a few comments to make about your article “The Unkindest Cut” (Cover Story, December 15). As I am expecting my second child, I was interested in reading what this article had to say in regards to the birthing experiences at Mary Birch. I had my first child at Mary Birch — I had the best care from the nurses and doctor there. My choices were respected and supported by the medical staff. I feel that if you choose to have your baby in a medical setting, such as a hospital like Mary Birch, you will be treated medically, not naturally. If you choose to have a natural birth in a medical setting it is in your best interest to hire a doula or birth coach to better support you. While it’s unfortunate that Ms. Cooper-Schultz had an unpleasant experience with the birth of her child by having a C-section, as written in the article, she was given a choice of giving birth naturally but chose not to. I feel women need to take responsibility for educating themselves on the process of birthing (induction, natural birth vs. C-section, etc.) before their time arrives so they are able to make informed choices when the time comes. I feel that doctors do make critical choices for each of their patients for the sake of the child. And if it means a not so ideal birth to avoid irreversible complications, then so be it. The most important outcome is a healthy child.

Name Withheld By Request
via email

A Few Room Nights In Prison

“The Convention Center Liars” by Don Bauder (“City Lights,” December 15) is a terrific exposé of the convention center CEO and board of directors’ corrupt practices. Quoting the story, “the center has been systematically overstating hotel room nights, and therefore overstating hotel tax receipts, attendee spending, and the center’s impact on the overall San Diego economy.”

The center’s management violates California Penal Code 424: “Knowingly keeps any false account” and “fraudulently alters, falsifies, conceals, destroys, or obliterates any account.” The law mandates prison sentences for the violators.

Melvin Shapiro
Hillcrest

We Pay, But We Don’t Play

It is no surprise the convention center statistics are bogus (“The Convention Center Liars,” “City Lights,” December 15). The primary justification for the $750,000,000 expansion is to keep the Comic-Con in San Diego. If Comic-Con leaves San Diego, so what? The reality is that the Comic-Con of today is no longer about comics; it’s been hijacked by Hollywood. It’s about money. It should be renamed Movie and Video Game Con and justifiably belongs in or near Hollywood. The taxpayers of San Diego who ultimately will pay for the facility no longer can get tickets for Comic-Con, which are sold out far in advance of the event. As long as our duly elected officials are bought and paid for by developers and special interests, the people of San Diego will continue to be thrown under the bus. Let Comic-Con leave and let the Chargers leave. We don’t need another huge money suck hole in downtown in the form of a football stadium that will only be used a dozen times a year. The absurd and costly Chargers ticket guarantee and Petco Park have done enough financial damage to our fair city. We don’t need more. Let’s spend our money on things that benefit all of us instead of the 1 percent. Repair our infrastructure and, by the way, where’s our library?

Jerry Wadle
via email

Looking For Pearls

I’m calling about a piece you write from time to time regarding old-time San Diego. I have a question. Is there any chance Jeff Smith could look up something that would have to do with the pearling industry? There was a pearling industry done at the bottom of Baja California — La Paz. I’m curious because my great-great-grandfather had a little business. He had three little ships, and he would sell the pearls up in San Francisco and then sail back down. I wondered if there’s any account of that at all, and if you could look into that and maybe write something about that.

The second thing is, I’m interested to see if you guys could put back the section in the “Outdoor” section (Calendar Events) about the planets and the stars and things like the faces of the moon. You guys used to write about that and you stopped writing about that, and if you could put it back, that would be interesting.

Name Withheld
via voice mail

Many of the entries in the “Outdoor” section, including observations about the sky, were written by Jerry Schad, who died in September. — Editor

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Jeff Smith Dec. 29, 2011 @ 3:49 p.m.

Name withheld. For the pearling industry I'd head straight to San Diego's Maritime Museum at 1492 North Harbor Drive (1492 - wasn't that when Columbus...?). They have archives and a journal that, at the very least, could give you some useful leads. The place is also a treat in itself.

<p>info@sdmaritime.org>
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