As of this morning, Nov. 12, the California fires have resulted in 31 deaths, 228 people unaccounted for, 150,000 people displaced, 400 square miles burned, 177 homes destroyed and 8,000 fire crews working around the clock while repeatedly putting their lives in danger.

Our president's reaction to what was happening: "There is no reason for these massive, deadly and costly fires in California except that forest management is so poor. Billions of dollars are given each year, with so many lives lost, all because of gross mismanagement of the forests. Remedy now, or no more Fed payments!"

Brian Rice, California Professional Firefighters, responded with this: "The president's message attacking California and threatening to withhold aid to victims of these cataclysmic fires is ill-informed, ill-timed and demeaning to those who are suffering as well as the men and women on the front lines."

Note: The depth of our president's empathy is incredible. To rate it at paper-thick is probably overrating it. I think I should write the president a letter to inform him that paper towels are not fire resistant and will not be required in California.

A.J. Marshall, Tehachapi