Light rail vs. ride sharing
In all fairness, the vast majority of Durham citizens that have said they would not ride the poorly planned Durham-Orange Light Rail Transit line need to have an address of the committee at the Federal Transportation Authority ( emails/written letters/phones ).
We need to voice our complaints/views before the end of this month. Durham’s cost/share is now up to $1.3 billion for a short, 17-mile track. No one who lives north of I-85 or from I-85 to downtown can ride on this thing! It has been said that Durham taxpayers are spending close to $1 million a month on the promoting and planning a future failure.
Durham could spend millions less on a plan for more smaller buses, and ride-sharing ideas, that would cover the whole County. I believe that the rail is no longer about the environment/auto emissions, but about the tremendous over-development retail/housing sprawl that will be built along the 17-mile track. And in the mid-1990s it started as a “Light Rail Committee,” now known as Go Triangle, which has benefited greatly through expanding staff and salaries.
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Editor’ note: The FTA does have a general address and online comment form:
By mail: Federal Transit Administration, East Building, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE, Washington, DC 20590
Protect the protesters
A significant police presence should be maintained at all times at UNC around the Confederate monument to protect the protesters who want the monument removed. Those protesters, largely students, are not violent people.
The Charlottesville incident showed clearly that the Trump-inspired alt-right neo-fascists along with the traditional KKK types present a serious danger if they invade a campus. Our students must be protected whatever the cost.
The danger, of course, could be eliminated permanently if the statue was removed. KKK-types rallied two years ago on the campus to make their views known. The legislature has made its views known in the law that forbids moving such monuments. The governor has opined that it would still be legal to move it. I suggest moving it and let the courts settle the legal issue.
Still in our hands
On Aug. 15, your paper published a piece called “A Climate Warning” calling attention to the recent report from 13 federal agencies that advocated action on climate change and decrying the political turmoil surrounding an issue that ought to be apolitical.
It’s important to remember that this isn’t out of our hands. We need to hold our elected officials accountable to acting responsibly in the face of climate crisis. Success depends on conscientious action by key senators such as North Carolina’s very own Sen. Richard Burr.
North Carolina cannot afford a 7.72 degree increase in temperature rise by the end of the century and we need our government to act now on our behalf. As you argued, climate change should not be a partisan issue, and it doesn’t have to be! If Sen. Burr and others act with conviction and with the interests of their constituents at heart, the roll back of our best environmental protections can be stopped, and we can instead move forward to protect our public lands from fossil-fuel extraction, build more solar and wind power and keep our environment clean.
Sen. Burr needs to commit to protecting our most critical environmental protections, and not allowing himself to be blinded by the “political storm” surrounding this issue.
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