Letters to the editor: Aug. 5, 2018


Re: Aug. 1 article, “Retired Texas teachers face giant hurdle to pension boost.”

As a retired teacher, I am concerned with the health of the Teacher Retirement System. It was interesting that system officials stated that “changes in marketplace and the global economic outlook” were to blame for the projected return decrease. Seems I’ve heard this before, yet the stock market is at an all-time high.

But this time it is true. With Donald Trump’s trade wars and tariff fights the global economy is uncertain at best and moving toward a significant downturn at worst.

Combined with his attitude toward public education, it is important that teachers and those who value teachers make their vote count this November.

JAMES OBERKROM, AUSTIN

Many of our Texas legislators have aunts, uncles, mothersand fathers who are retired teachers. I am sure they are concerned about how they will manage if they must wait another 13 years for a raise in their retirement checks.

There are probably some of them, though, who are still mad at Mr. X for failing them in chemistry, or Miss Y for sending them to the principal’s office. Revenge can be sweet.

The discussion that’s currently in progress about funding for retired teachers’ pay is rather like a group of learned physicians standing around the bed of a critically ill patient and debating whether the medicine should be delivered via injection, pill or incision. Guess what happens while they argue? Problem solved.

Remember the lines from Shakespeare you had to learn: “The quality of mercy is not strained…,” or “Et tu, Brute?” Now’s the time to remember.

BOBBIE SANDERS, AUSTIN

It is with great sadness that our family has learned of the death of Frank Denius. From the graduation of the initial class from the University of Texas, this school, this state and this country, have been blessed by the genius and heroics of its alumni.

Dating back to the early 1950s, it has been my privilege and sincere honor to be friends and colleagues with two of those magnificent Longhorns, who in turn were contemporaries, Frank Erwin and Frank Denius.

Erwin for years was one of my law partners, and, later, Denius associated with me to assist him over several years of defense litigation involving the Herman Heep estate.

The generous outpouring of justified love and affection says it all. He will be missed by those who were fortunate enough to cross his path.

Semper fidelis.

JACK D. MARONEY, AUSTIN

Just wondering how many people besides me find it coincidental that this change in direction is happening just before the November election campaigns start up? This “killing off” of CodeNext 13 weeks before the November election is an example of politics as they exist today: Do that which is “politically expedient” — a term I hear too often.

Our current political climate elects followers, not leaders. They do that which is easy instead of being willing to do the heavy lifting required to do what is right. The killing off of Code Next before the election cycle kicks into gear highlights what really happens at City Hall, the state Capitol and in Washington.

The term “politically expedient” sums up politics in the 21st century. It has nothing to do with leading. It has nothing to do with doing that which is right. It’s “politically expedient”

DELWIN GOSS, AUSTIN

Re: July 29 article, “Up in smoke: Legendary Lockhart barbecue is overrated.”

My wife and a friend visited Lockhart recently and were not surprised to find the township up in arms over the hatchet job done on the four iconic and antediluvian barbecue restaurants located there.

Apparently, most of the residents believe that the reviewer, Matthew Odam, knows as much about barbecue as a duck knows about chain reactions.

Odam may want to wait a few years before visiting again; I understand that Luling is circulating posters of him, in case he wants to review City Market there.

LESTER G. FRAZIER, GEORGETOWN

Re: June 28 article, “City report on Confederate monuments raises idea of renaming Austin.

After reading the report from the city of Austin’s Equity Office this morning, I recommend that policy be enacted to prohibit naming roads, parks, buildings and other public locations after people.

What is acceptable, even laudable, behavior today may become unacceptable 100 years from now. Also, if naming for a living person, reprehensible behavior may come to light in the future, requiring another name change.

We can find enough other things to name after, such as plants and animals, that won’t possibly reflect negatively upon us to the next generation.

STEPHANIE BRUNDAGE, AUSTIN

I strongly disagree with the idea of changing the name of the city which 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 TEXAS



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