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Let's Talk About Jobs! 

Editor:

A glaring omission in Representative Huffman's interview ("Congressional Chat," Jan. 18) was "jobs or full employment." We should be proposing: federal job retraining programs for jobs lost during industry disruptions, vocational training in high school/community college and federal start-up funding for mini manufacturing. Instead of discussing "decorum," Huffman and Wear could have analyzed the fury and fear fueling Trump's ascension. Economic insecurity feeds racism.

Environmental issues are close to Huffman's heart but it is incumbent upon him to figure out that nationally we are not going to get support for environmental issues unless folks feel they can find decent paying jobs to keep their house and family together. These are lynchpins to supporting their self-respect.

Huffman's district includes many working and middle class people who are fearful about their economic future and/or aren't stable financially now. I talked to an employee at the Humboldt County Office of Education about federal job creation being needed. Her reply, "Yes! Let's get real." 

Lots of District Two folks work in the service industry. A substantial number will be losing those jobs to automation in the next several years. Even in Eureka, computerized scanners are replacing cashiers and tellers. Huffman needs to have these people's backs.

I have gone to two Huffman town hall meetings and never heard him bring up these issues. For our representative to ignore class issues is deadly; our country is on the brink of authoritarianism and we can no longer make the same mistakes we've made for decades. The Democrats lost voters in the center because previous administrations shipped out thousands of those voters' well-paid manufacturing jobs and we have not created solutions to reverse the slide of the middle and working classes. We need to rectify this.

A strong middle class helps make a country internally strong and gives hope to the working class.

Zephyr Markowitz, Bayside

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