Letters to the editor: May 18, 2018


Re: May 13 commentary, “MLS can win Austin’s heart with the right deal.”

In response to your editorial about Major League Soccer moving to Austin: We don’t need bragging rights — and while the American-Statesman’s editorial board may know that MLS is a good fit for Austin, we citizens don’t necessarily know that or believe that.

The biggest question is not whether or not the stadium is built on city-owned land. The biggest question is that if the project is structured as Precourt Ventures desires, will the land and stadium be taxable property to the city of Austin and Austin Independent School District? If it’s not taxable, then this is a big deal.

JOHN LASH, AUSTIN

Capital Metro is proposing $6 billion to $10 billion to expand rail in Austin. How about we spend — via bond approval vote — one-tenth of that to almost immediately improve transportation in Austin?

First, buy and eliminate all toll lanes on MoPac. This would help all who use MoPac Boulevard (Loop 1), not just the few willing to pay as much as $10 for a one-time trip. To help Interstate 35, make it free for 18-wheelers to use the Texas 130 toll road to bypass Austin. Also, on MoPac, we maybe could eventually add another lane since we would be removing all the barriers that separate the toll lanes from the free lanes, and using or increasing road shoulders.

Goal: Government to move traffic in the most efficient cost-effective manner for all its citizens — not just the wealthy few. Let us vote on this proposal.

A. D. SMITH, AUSTIN

Our society hit a new low when it became acceptable for the President Trump and other White House functionaries to disrespect and insult our military heroes. Both Sen. John McCain and special counsel Robert Mueller are genuine military heroes with distinguished military and civilian records. This conduct is disgraceful — and it needs to stop now. It should have been stopped the first time it happened.

Our elected representatives need to find their long lost intestinal fortitude and sense of decency. They need make it clear to the president that until this deplorable practice stops, presidential apologies made, and all guilty parties fired, that his domestic agenda goes nowhere. Actually, that would be best in any event. It is likely that President Trump himself will be fired in the next election.

RICHARD MARTIN, AUSTIN

My heart bleeds for the more than 50 Palestinians — including women and children — shot dead today by Israeli soldiers in Gaza. No doubt, they weren’t simply chanting and carrying signs; nevertheless, Israeli forces did not appear to suffer casualties. Everybody knows of the atrocious treatment meted out to the Jewish people over the centuries. But does that justify this?

President Trump deliberately kicked over a hornet’s nest with his totally unnecessary embassy move from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. He certainly shares responsibility for these deaths. Yet, he “remains committed” to the peace process. Like all his foreign policies, this will end in disaster. Iran will find its revenge. North Korea is simply playing him. The U.S., under this misfit, is the only civilized country to adopt such polarizing positions, and the world is a much worse place for his corrupt, ignorant, selfish hand on the controls.

JOHN ROBEY, AUSTIN

During the early years of immigration from European counties, America had employment opportunities in agriculture, steel, automotive and many other industries that only required basic skills. There was a need to encourage immigration because industries leaders needed workers.

Today’s technology has downsized these industries and now requires workers with a higher skill level. What industry jobs are available to worker today with limited skills? My question is how will immigrants with limited skills get work to support their families? Or should we only allow immigrants with skills America needs to enter our country? Or should we open our boarders to anyone in need of a safe place to live, because their country is unstable and unsafe?

This is a very difficult decision for our leaders and citizens — but one that needs to be debated. If we are going to open our borders, America needs a plan.

JACK STROOBANDT, GEORGETOWN



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