Letters to the editor: Nov. 20, 2017


Re: Nov. 13 commentary, “Wear: MetroRail station late and costlier? Yes and no. Maybe.”

Apparently, our local transit planners have never heard of “connectivity.” Pieces of our transit system don’t connect.

The Capital Metro downtown rail station is blocks from both the Megabus terminal and the north-south 801 and 803 routes. The 801 and 803 routes are several blocks east of the Amtrak station. Just imagine your morning commute if you had to leave your car, carry your belongings four blocks and then get into another car.

Until planners embrace connectivity, we’ll continue to fritter away millions on little-used “improvements,” such as the new rail station.

FELIPE ROSALES, AUSTIN

I believe the issue regarding shootings, among other problems in our society of late, are the result of ill-directed or unguided children, grown up and angry.

I see affluenza as the problem. Parents are too busy to pay attention to what their children are doing; instead, they give them things they did not earn and turn a blind eye. These young adults can drive and buy, but do they know how to earn? Put them in front of a screen, in front of a wheel, behind a gun — they have no sense of empathy, concern for others. They are empty souls. And too often, so are their parents. It will get worse. We need to pay more attention, all of us, to our young people.

MARY CHADWELL SEABORNE, SAN MARCOS

Re: Nov. 13 commentary, “Stop attacks on Affordable Care Act.”

Glenn W. Smith errs when he describes health care as a right. Single-payer or government-provided care is a privilege, the limits of which are determined by an unelected bureaucracy. It still has to be paid for, either through taxes, insurance or both.

Nothing can be a right that requires others to provide it. Ruminate on that for a moment — none of our recognized rights such as free speech, freedom of assembly, freedom from unwarranted searches and others, share this characteristic.

If you insist health care is a right, then determine how it is to be funded and how those funds would be controlled — and by whom. All of us would pay, one way or another.

ANTHONY J. ADOLPH, AUSTIN

Re: Nov. 15 letter to the editor, “If contraception is key, find job that provides it.”

Men have always impregnated women much more than what is good for the women and for societies. If women would not have had billions of abortions and prevented additional billions of pregnancies, most humans, including guys like the letter writer, would live in slums without any job.

Doctors and employers must not be allowed to cherry-pick what care they consider acceptable according to their pseudo-religious beliefs.

HEINZ AESCHBACH, AUSTIN

Re: Nov. 5 article, “Denied help. Denied hope.”

Personally, I believe we will all be held accountable one day for the way we treat each other. Each of us required to explain why we insisted on spending all of our treasure on weapons and wars — and why there was so little left over for children in desperate need.

And hardest of all to explain will be why some of us presented ourselves as examples that Christ would be proud of when clearly we were not. If there is no justice in this world, it’s only because we make it so. Personally, I believe there will be an accounting.

KEN LONES, AUSTIN

I hope my representative, John R. Carter, is listening to me when I and many of his constituents say scrap your plan to allow internet service providers to charge for preferential treatment.

These rules would destroy the open internet. I urge Carter to make a public statement telling the Federal Communications Commission to throw out its proposed rules and to preserve real net neutrality.

SARAH POLK, CEDAR PARK

If we look at the overall economy, we see low inflation, low unemployment, good profits and rising interest rates. No recession, no dot-com bubble, no mortgage collapse. The stock market at record highs. These are the good times. And yet, the most recent reports are of a $666 billion deficit — and the new tax proposal increases it by more than $1 trillion dollars.

If we can’t raise enough tax revenue during the good times to cover our budget, how can we possibly ever balance it? The last time we had a surplus, the national debt was about $10 trillion; now it is double that — a result of the last round of tax cuts. Leave tax rates where they are and use meaningful tax reform to again generate a tax surplus. Then, we can discuss tax cuts. There should be no tax cuts until after we have a balanced budget.

JAMES PETERSON, AUSTIN

An unintended and serendipitous commentary on gun violence in the United States comes from the 2017 film, “The Book of Henry,” a screenplay by Gregg Hurwitz.

The dialogue between 11-year-old Henry and his Mom is about child abuse, but it applies equally to the endless cycle of gun violence in our country:

Henry: Violence isn’t the worst thing in the world.

Mom: What is then?

Henry: Apathy.

If our only response to gun violence is “thoughts and prayers,” then our true response is apathy. There is no hope in apathy.

THE REV. ROBERT J. KARLI, AUSTIN



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