Letters to the Editor: Dianne Feinstein balanced compassion with smart leadership

Sen. Dianne Feinstein speaks to reporters as she arrives at the U.S. Capitol for a vote on Feb. 14.
(Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: In 1991, my last political activity being a Vietnam-era peace march in 1970, I was moved to volunteer at the Vallejo Democratic Party headquarters, galvanized by the candidacy of Dianne Feinstein for the U.S. Senate. (“With Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s retirement, an era ends for California,” editorial, Feb. 14)

The memories of her courage and dignity at the horrible deaths of her San Francisco colleagues, as well as her then-unique blend of fiscal vigilance tempered by human compassion as mayor of that city, were vivid in my mind.

Over the years, she did not disappoint. Her dedication to our national security, both internal and external, is unparalleled. She is a true patriot.


Congratulations, Sen. Feinstein, on a remarkable and fruitful career. Thank you for your dedicated service to San Francisco, California and the people of the United States.

Christina Arrostuto, Auburn, Calif.


To the editor: In all the tributes to Feinstein and the great things she accomplished, there is no mention of one of the most important decisions she made as mayor of San Francisco.

In 1983, a serious engineering report was produced that showed Candlestick Park, then the home the Giants of Major League Baseball and the National Football League’s 49ers, was in need of substantial renovation to prevent a potential collapse of the upper tiers in the event of a major earthquake.

At the time, plans were already underway to replace Candlestick with a new stadium, and Mayor Feinstein was advised not to spend the money on a ballpark that would soon be abandoned. Feinstein insisted that the still in-use ballpark had to be fixed.

A few years later, the Loma Prieta quake hit during a packed World Series game at Candlestick in 1989. Feinstein’s decision might have saved thousands of lives.


Catherine Burke, San Gabriel


To the editor: Feinstein enthusiastically embraced spying on Americans. In 2019 she snarled dismissively at young climate change activists, and the next year she publicly sucked up to then-Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) after the Amy Coney Barrett hearings.

Especially in view of that last performance, Feinstein was pressured into stepping aside from chairing the Judiciary Committee should her party win control of the Senate. She did not even receive public support for her 2018 reelection bid from her own California party structure.

Apparently, those Democrats did not regard her as “great.” Neither do I.

William Smithers, Santa Barbara