Letters to the editor: Aug. 11, 2017

Re: Aug. 7 letter to the editor, “Do we need national search for library head?”

To the writer: Please tell me much you know about running a library in 2017. Tell me how qualified you are to manage a $47.4 million budget, over 400 employees and countless volunteers — and 1.8 million items in the collection. Tell me your knowledge of how to catalog items so they are easily accessible to patrons and how you would go about organizing the nearly 9,000 programs per year offered to the community.

And please share your plan to curate materials, programs and resources that fill the needs of a population diverse in age, culture and language. Tell me your experience providing and implementing technology and innovation in over 20 branches. Blair Parsons may well be qualified, but my most burning question is: Have you even been in a library since that 1991 episode of “Seinfeld”?


The adage “what’s good for the goose is good for the gander” should apply to our legislators. When proposing legislation, they should be required to experience their legislation since, in my opinion, they often don’t fully understand the implications and consequences. And that often leads to unintended consequences that voters and government organizations, such as the police and education administrators, must then struggle to deal with.

In that regard, Sen. Lois Kolkhorst should dress as and take on a male persona, visit several highly attended venues and enter the ladies’ restroom. She might then change her position about being required to use the restroom consistent with her birth certificate. She should also enter the men’s restroom. She’d likely enter and leave without so much as a second glance.

Male-sponsored legislation should have same requirement.


Re: July 31 commentary, “Tree legislation brings Texas to the edge of anti-localism.”

The accusation that tree legislation would “grant all private property owners … the right to destroy and remove any tree of any age and size growing on their property” is false. The right to dispose of one’s own private property as one wishes is not something for the Legislature to grant; it is an inherent right of the property owner. This right to do as one wishes with their private property is safeguarded by the Texas Constitution, which provides that “no person’s property shall be taken, damaged, or destroyed for or applied to public use without adequate compensation being made.”

Rather than granting anything, the Legislature is acting to restore rights to property owners, which local tyranny has usurped. Restoring these rights secures our Texan values and squashes municipal tyranny like a bug.


I see that Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick says what is wrong in Texas is that local voters get to choose their own governments and even elect Democrats. If he really feels that way — and hates the idea that the voters get to choose things of which he does not approve — why doesn’t he stand up and be honest and abolish elected local government? As long as you let those pesky, ignorant voters decide matters, Patrick, you are going to get things you won’t like. So, let the Legislature appoint local prefects to run things, that way he can be certain it will always be done his way.

After all, as Patrick and Gov. Greg Abbott have reminded us, there is nothing in the Texas Constitution that gives residents any “right” to have their own government, as they are all “creatures of the state.”


Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Opinion

Letters to the editor: Dec. 18, 2017

Re: Dec. 5 article, “UT seeking 2 percent increase in tuition in 2018, and again in 2019,” and Dec. 7 article, “UT graduate students protest low wages, possible tax on waived tuition.” Two recent articles caught my eye in the Statesman. One was that the cost of tuition could increase at the University of Texas. The other was...
Opinion: Roy Moore debacle wasn’t all Steve Bannon’s fault

Republican politics was starting to feel like a version of Mel Brooks’ “The Producers.” In the play, two scammers devise a tax write-off scheme in which they will make a killing by losing money on a Broadway show. They reach for the most grotesque, tasteless musical the human mind can conceive — “Springtime for Hitler&rdquo...
‘Stormlight Archive’ series continues with gripping third book
‘Stormlight Archive’ series continues with gripping third book

Brandon Sanderson’s “Oathbringer” is an epic fantasy about the return of an ancient, world-destroying evil. God is dead. And Odium, the god who killed the Almighty, is unleashing terrible monsters to destroy humankind. Dalinar Kholin has bonded with the powerful spren known as the Stormfather and led his people to the lost city of...
Facebook comments: Dec. 17, 2017

As reported by the American-Statesman’s Kevin Lyttle, Austin city staffers identified eight city-owned sites that could house a Major League Soccer stadium or practice facility. Precourt Sports Ventures, owners of Columbus Crew SC, announced in October that it was exploring a move to Austin. The possible stadium sites include three pieces of...
Commentary: How housing costs are changing Central Texas’ demographics
Commentary: How housing costs are changing Central Texas’ demographics

The demographic trends in Texas are clear: The combination of a youthful Latino population and an aging white population has led to Latino dominance in the state’s population growth. Between 2006 and 2016, the Latino population grew six times more rapidly than the white population. Of the nearly 4.4 million persons added to the Texas population...
More Stories