Letters to the editor: Aug. 10, 2018


Re: Aug. 6 commentary, “Wear: Cap Metro plugs into a new transit outlet: electric-powered buses.

While I applaud Cap Metro for doing something, its move to begin testing electric buses shows how far behind the rest of the world America is in transport technology. The Chinese city of Shenzhen, near Hong Kong, currently operates a fleet of 16,000 buses — all of which are electric.

Rather than using his bully pulpit to close that technology gap, President Trump’s relaxation of vehicle-fuel-efficiency standards will leave the U.S. auto industry clinging to 20th century technology, as well as worsening climate change.

PHILIP RUSSELL, AUSTIN

Re: Aug. 5 commentary, “Myth, not renewable energy, generates Georgetown’s buzz.

This column by a “policy analyst” of the Texas Public Policy Foundation oddly takes issue with the city of Georgetown’s pledge to renewable energy. But, it’s not so odd if one bares the true motives of the benignly named Texas Public Policy Foundation — a conservative, right-wing group that takes issue with public needs such as health, education, justice, taxes, and, as we see here, environmental stewardship.

It’s generous of the newspaper to share a place for them in the opinion pages, and they have every right to voice their position on “prosperity” and “liberty,” whether its inclusive of all people or protects our natural resources. One can hope that voters will speak with their ballots this fall to let them know that the conservative agenda is not adequately serving all Texans, nor the best interests of protecting our environment.

JOHN CHILSTROM, AUSTIN

Egomaniacal President Trump decided to insult LeBron James in a recent tweet. Maybe Trump is envious of LeBron’s success. Lebron’s contributions off the court are truly admirable.

The James LeBron Family Foundation has pledged to give over 2,300 children scholarships, which could total more than $105 million. Additionally, LeBron’s foundation helps parents who never got high school diplomas get their GEDs. These charities are certainly helping “Make America Great Again.” Trump, on the other hand, started a fraudulent and now defunct Trump University for which he settled a lawsuit out of court for $25 million.

Trump spends his spare time fomenting hate and divisiveness in our country, which will never “Make America Great Again.”

WALTER MAGAÑA, AUSTIN

Now that we are removing Confederate “hero” statues and changing names of streets and schools, let’s consider the same actions for Texas “heroes” responsible for the genocide of Native Americans in Texas. Some Texas heroes include:

• Mirabeau Lamar: president of the Republic of Texas, who instituted a policy of extermination and expulsion of Indians.

• Thomas Rusk and Edward Burleson: Made war on the Cherokee and other tribal bands. Killed Chief Bowles, other chiefs, and many innocent men, women and children at Battle of Neches.

• Randall MacKenzie: Destroyed Indian villages in Palo Duro Canyon and slaughtered hundreds of Indian horses after the battle.

• John “Jack” Hays: Led Rangers on brutal war campaign against Comanches.

• Lawrence Sullivan “Sul” Ross: Led the massacre at Pease River.

• John “Rip” Ford: Ordered the slaughter of entire Indian villages.

These genocidal actions were no less reprehensible than those of Confederate heroes.

JAMES H. CLARY, AUSTIN

I strongly disagree with the idea of changing the name of the city that bears the name of one of the earliest Texans — the man who was responsible for bringing the first settlers to the territory. Three hundred families began the settling the area, ranching, farming and fighting Indians, all thanks to Stephen F. Austin.

His signature is on my ancestor’s land grant of 1824. He should be continued to be honored here, in my opinion.

My great grandparents, grandmother and father all lived in Austin. I can’t imagine any other name more suitable to Texas.

My aunt always used to say, “There’s no place like Austin.”

CAROLYN GRIFFIN, SUN CITY

Re: Aug. 5 article,

My modest proposal for our immigration issues is to equally offend both political parties by extending zero tolerance to target — with rigorous raids — employers who hire the undocumented.

It would be unpopular with both Republicans and Democrats, each who benefit from cheap labor, fear of unauthorized deportation, and the promise of swelling the ranks of new voters. Opposition to it might unite Congress to put country before party by creating a comprehensive immigration policy.

Such a policy could restore the authority of the legislative branch over the endless battling of judicial authority. It might even recognize the value of citizenship and respect for those who seek it legally, and also recognize the value of Dreamers and the hard-working undocumented. We might actually have both a secure border and a path to citizenship for millions. Or, is that too much to hope for in our political climate charged with identity politics and ideology?

JEFF A.TOWNSEND, BURNET



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