Code Next winners are developers and their political allies, city tax coffers and wealthy, mostly childless, more densely packed condo-style urban dwellers who enjoy having their favorite bars, restaurants, loud performance venues and shops — without adequate parking — right next door.
Code Next losers are a variegated Austin, nonwealthy middle- and lower-class families with kids and dogs who need a yard to play, workers, artists and stable sustainable neighborhoods.
The city has manipulated — and distracted — Code Next “citizen input” with such skill that the many sincere suggestions for improvements made by responsible citizens will simply be overwhelmed by the non-negotiable “form-based” assumptions “baked into Code Next.” City planners and developers take all. Austin weirdness will take it on the chin.
But, the soprano has not sung yet! Stand up now and say no to Code Next!
ALBERT MEISENBACH, AUSTIN
Re: Aug. 13 article, “Four Robert E. Lee Road signs found vandalized in South Austin.”
The removal of Confederate statues is not about defending any side, ideology or people. This is about defending the law, the one stating that the defacement of property is illegal and should be punished as such — and no amount of public approval can change that. The fact that “police did not have any information” and the mayor fails to address the criminal nature of this act shows a double standard that is deeply troubling.
Sure, the actions of one individual has spurred change, but at what cost? The moment we start picking when our laws apply is the moment our system fails. This is not progressive, righteous or forward-looking; it’s anarchy. When did we lose our ability to create solutions using constructive means instead of criminal ones?
WILL FLANAGAN, AUSTIN
I love calling Texas home, but why do we allow for Confederate monuments to stand on the grounds of the Texas Capitol?
These artifacts of the past serve to promote a distorted telling of history with no mention of the crimes and atrocities committed. We should dismantle the monuments and have them transported to either the Bullock Texas State History Museum or the American Civil War Museum, so their true place in history can be taught properly.
The presence of Confederate monuments at the Capitol serves as a tacit endorsement of racist views and values by officials to make Texas’ minority and immigrant communities feel inferior. The center of Texas politics cannot and should not be a memorial for pure evil. Please remove these hateful markers, so all Texans can continue to feel proud about calling this great state home.
DAWIT HAILE, AUSTIN
Re: Aug. 23 commentary, “Why the faith community’s silence on racism is deafening.”
As usual there’s just no winning with self-proclaimed social justice warriors.
For decades, our religious leaders have been bullied into keeping their opinions to themselves and refrain from politics. Now you expect them to speak out against racism?
We speak out against individual bullying; now how about we stop the public bullying?
JONATHAN SMITH, AUSTIN
Some pundits criticized President Trump for looking at the sun without glasses during the eclipse, but he was really showing strong leadership.
For years, the elitist liberal medical establishment, supported by the liberal elitist media, has told us it is not safe to look at the sun. President Trump proved that idea is fake science. The medical establishment pretends to care about our health, but their real agenda is control. They want to control what we look at and control how we look at it. Don’t be fooled by elitist science; you can look at the sun whenever you want. And eating donuts all day won’t make you fat, either!
STEPHEN KRAEMER, FREDONIA