Since April, Austin has swarmed with motorized scooters for rent. They look fun to use and fill an important transportation gap for many people.
However, I see a problem in the pricing model for these rental scooters: Charging for the minute instead of by the mile creates incentives for riders to drive them dangerously fast and to disobey stop signs and other traffic signals.
I would like the City Council to modify the ordinance that regulates rental scooters to require them to charge users by the mile, not by the minute. While this may not stop all people from riding irresponsibly fast, it will help take away the financial justification for speeding. This will help improve public safety.
LOUISE NELSON, AUSTIN
Re: Aug. 21 commentary, “Without a populist strategy, GOP has only whiteness left.”
Ross Douthat, who apparently writes for the New York Times — which speaks for itself — would have one believe, based on a recent Pew analysis, that a large white voter turnout elected Donald Trump to be president.
What Douthat fails to mention is that black voter turnout dropped from 66.6 percent in 2012 to 59.6 percent in 2016, according to Pew. Seven percentage points is a significant number of lost votes, and coupled with a white voter increase from 64.1 percent in 2012 to 65.3 percent in 2016, and with the Latino vote essentially unchanged, hardly supports Douthat’s “whiteness” strategy.
As an independent, college-educated, white voter, I am open to all opinions — but only those that are fact-based and not a simple, biased ideology. We’re all entitled to our opinions, but let them have some real merit and not speculation.
TERRY JUDGE, GEORGETOWN
I remember Trump said: “I’ll choose the best people for my administration.”
Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign chairman, was found guilty of eight felonies. Rick Gates, Trump’s deputy campaign manager, pleaded guilty to conspiracy and making false statements. Michael Flynn, Trump’s ex-national security adviser, pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI for meeting Russian agents. George Papadopoulos, Trump’s former foreign policy adviser, pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about meeting a Russian agent. Michael Cohen, Trump’s lawyer, pleaded guilty to bank fraud, tax evasion and paying adulterous Trump’s sexual partners “at the direction of” Trump. Jeff Sessions, Trump’s attorney general, lied to Congress several times over Russian contacts.
If this is a witch hunt, there are a lot of witches swimming in the most corrupt swamp ever.
RANDY BROUSSARD, BELTON
As an independent citizen of our great country, I believe that the vote for Supreme Court candidate Brett Kavanaugh should be delayed until the American people have had the chance to vote in November.
My friends and family alike believe that the benefit of waiting until after the 2018 midterm elections will assure us that candidate Kavanaugh’s appointment has not been unfairly railroaded through before the American people have had the chance to weigh in.
The same Republicans who had unfairly refused to even consider former President Obama’s recommendation for Supreme Court justice, Merrick Garland, already pushed through Justice Neil Gorsuch.
Let’s not allow that to happen once again.
LINDA SAPER, AUSTIN
The vulgar and crude questions that Brett Kavanaugh was prepared to ask Bill Clinton during the Kenneth Starr investigation are all we need to know about this man to show that he is unfit to be a Supreme Court justice.
Only a base and coarse person would even consider posing such questions. Also, we now have a perfect of example of a “perjury trap.” What bothers me most is Kavanaugh’s utter lack of care and concern for the pain and humiliation his questions would cause to Monica Lewinsky and her family.
NANCY LABASTIDA, AUSTIN
Donald J. Trump is certainly unlike any president we have ever had. I doubt anyone has ever thought of comparing him to JFK. One similarity, to neither man’s credit, is that they were both womanizers.
One glaring difference, however, can be found in five words from Kennedy’s inaugural address: “Civility is not a sign of weakness.” Where, you may ask, might you find proof of Trump’s incivility? How about any one of Trump’s thousands of tweets?
CARL LLOYD, SAN ANTONIO