Letters to the editor: Nov. 2, 2017

  • Staff
  • American-Statesman staff
4:41 p.m Wednesday, Nov. 1, 2017 Opinion

Re: Oct. 29 commentary, “Herman: The unmystery of the 2018 Texas U.S. House races.”

I understand Ken Herman’s reasoning, but the Democrats finally do have reason to hope. Stats show a big increase in Democrat voters. We have a president who is alienating everybody — and we have unresponsive representatives. Like many in Travis County, I spent much of this past year reeling in shock, glued to my online Donald Trump news reports much like a drug addict needing a daily fix. Well, now I’m tired of marching and complaining. This situation has yanked many Democrats out of complacency and into activism.

Don’t count us out, Ken. Yes, the gerrymandering has made it more difficult — but with apathetic Republican voters and fired up Democrats, we can pull together and turn this state back to blue!


Re: Oct. 28 article, “Group says Planning Commission’s roster violates Austin city charter,” Oct. 29 article, “Mayor’s aide denies improper ties between nonprofit, City Hall,” Oct. 27 article, “A year after Ott, Austin city manager interviews to begin in secret,” and Oct. 26 article, “Council member wants city-owned land to be considered for MLS facility.”

Wow! Apparently, we have a mayor and council for whom the normal rules do not apply:

1. The Planning Commission is populated by developers and realtors, although that is against the rules.

2. The mayor defends his assistant who not only blurred the lines around conflict of interest but rubbed them out.

3. The council has determined that they can keep the names of city manager candidates secret from the people who are most likely to hope the candidates are good ones. You remember those people; they are called tax-paying voters.

4. One of the council members is considering donating city parkland to a money making professional sports team.

I am not certain why we are having these issues, but it makes me want to cry. We deserve better.


Re: Oct. 26 article, “Democrat Andrew White, son of ex-governor, may challenge Greg Abbott,” and Oct. 26 commentary, “A civil voice departs, putting Texas at risk of political takeover by GOP’s far right.

It is encouraging to read that Andrew White, son of former Gov. Mark White, is considering running as a Democrat for governor of Texas.

Andrew White has an excellent role model in his father. As columnist Ken Herman’s commentary was headlined, the decision of Republican Joe Straus to not seek re-election puts Texas at risk of political takeover by GOP’s far right.

As a lifelong Democrat, I hope Andrew White will be the Democratic nominee for governor. Texas needs him.


There are many people who work in motels and other service industry jobs who start a job with the understanding that it will provide full-time employment. Even at 40 hours a week, it is difficult to support a family on the low wages they receive, but then management starts cutting hours, explaining that “business is slow.”

It seems, judging from the experience of a friend, that as soon as the three months has elapsed making her eligible for company-sponsored health insurance, her hours are cut to just below the level required to obtain it.

If companies would pay a decent wage, assure the hours of work promised and live up to the sign-on promise of health insurance, they would have better retention and more dedicated employees.

The best way to assist most families is to make it possible for adults to become self-sufficient through dependable, regular employment.