Re: Aug. 1 article, “Goodbye to a Texas literary legend, environmental giant.”
I first met John Graves when my family was traveling through Glen Rose and we concocted the idea we wanted to meet him. Finding his address we knocked on the door and he opened it and told us to come on in — complete strangers. We talked about all sorts of things, while he served us tea and cookies — a consummate gentleman. He is gone now, but I will retain the memories of a kind man who took the time to welcome strangers into his home and made them feel comfortable and important. What a classy guy.
Re: Aug. 1 letter to the editor, “Come in, the water’s fine?”
Thanks to the author for his excellent letter on the water situation in Central Texas. Now, it’s time for the American-Statesman to step up. Instead of yet another story on the current drought, how about going to city and state officials in the area and asking how they reconcile the effort to attract more business, more residents and more housing projects with the fact that there isn’t enough water to go around for those of us already here. Are they expecting a miracle? Well, we can hope. But if this is our new reality, we need to decide if we want to take care of people who live here or if we want to continue inviting more and more people to relocate here, with no way to provide the water they need to live.
Am I to believe my ears? Even after the chief executive offers a realistic plan to staunch corporate tax evasion (a type of evasion which rewards the wealthy at the expense of the middle class), some folks in the Legislature persist in turning a blind eye to corporate blight? What part of closing tax loopholes — of any kind — does not result ultimately in a fairer and more equitable system? Could it be that those legislators fiercely opposing closing corporate have a conflict of interest?
Re: July 31 letter to the editor, “Pope not a friend of poor.”
The Catholic Church holds up an ideal for which we strive. That this ideal is seldom if ever achieved is no reason to change or lower the ideal. The Catholic Church recognizes that their ideal is not achieved and that we are all sinners. Instead of being barbecued for eternity for using birth control (or any other “sin”), they preach forgiveness. The church teaches us to strive to be closer to God and more like Jesus. All while recognizing that we are not perfect.
Re: July 27 article, “Officer shoots, kills man after West Austin chase.”
Sadly, there was another fatal police shooting in Austin. The family and friends of the deceased protested in front of the police station and there can be no doubt their pain runs deep. This happens all too often here, and I want to address one aspect that seems obvious but is seldom mentioned. In virtually every case, the person who was shot, resisted, threatened, or fought with the police officer who shot them. While police actions and procedures need to be constantly reviewed, there might also be benefit in a public education effort encouraging people to obey police directives. Whether you are guilty of a crime or not, it is never a good idea to resist, attack or threaten the police.
Re: Underpass on I-35
In my 81 years — 46 in Austin — I have never heard of a plan that is as insane as this one. Has anyone realized that this could be named the most dangerous road on earth? Yesterday, a truck exploded near the planned underpass. How many people would have been trapped and killed? We have had torrential rain in the past, which would completely flood this underpass. We live on Balcones Fault, and any tremor could bring down this tunnel, and the river would flood all of downtown Austin.
Has anyone thought about the daily wrecks on I-35? Let’s not forget that construction would be on-going for a minimum of five years and where would we bypass this construction? Then, last but not least, the cost would escalate into a billion dollars. Not with my tax money!
The Texas legislature has been in Austin nearly seven months and can’t come up with a transportation plan. Gov. Rick Perry has been in Austin 13 years and still does not show any leadership. So, why would you expect a Republican-controlled legislature to be able to do its job? After two special sessions of the legislature, they should give state legislators a T-shirt that says on it: “After two special sessions, all we got was a lousy anti-abortion bill!”
John C. Sanders
In June, the Defense of Marriage Act was repealed. This July, George Zimmerman was acquitted of murder. While these events have nothing in common, I have noted one correlation: It is the noisy cry of “the voice of the people.” The attitudes of all indicate that we hold Zimmerman guilty. Similarly, it was remarked that legal acceptance of homosexual unions was irrelevant, due to the people’s already-obvious preference. I could point to other “people’s laws” on immigration, drugs, and underage drinking.
I assert and defend the right of all to seek justice and to express belief, but I cannot approve this mob rule. If we cannot obey actual law, we must relocate to a place in which laws better suit us. Our exhausted government must be careful to distinguish between expression and dissension. I say this not to support tyranny, but to retain respect and security for our government. Let sedition be punished for what it is.