More than a few Falls of New Hope neighbors are figuratively scratching their heads about the Chapel Hill News’ coverage of the now-withdrawn proposal to build a large solar power installation directly adjoining our neighborhood.
We fail to understand why, having given considerable space to the views and concerns of the Bishop family, your reporter neglected to interview any Falls of New Hope residents. If she had done so, she might not have made the misleading and erroneous reference to “the animosity that was building for years between the Bishops … and their Falls of New Hope neighbors.”
I am unaware of any Falls of New Hope neighbors who harbor any animosity toward the Bishops. To the contrary, we appreciate their careful stewardship of this beautiful property. It’s true there have been isolated incidents of trespassing, but few of these have been by Falls of New Hope residents, who don’t “use” the Bishops’ property “for recreation.” We have our own neighborhood park, maintained by the residents, for that purpose. As for the signs, the “No Trespassing” sign across the street from my house has not been torn down in the five years we have lived in the neighborhood – although it is getting a bit weathered, and a fresh sign would certainly be more visible.
Speaking for myself, I fully understand the fiscal and financial pressures that moved the Bishops to accept the Sunlight proposal. Now that the proposal has been withdrawn, I hope the neighborhood will be able to work constructively with the Bishops to find a use for their property that will both meet their financial needs and maintain the character of the 50-year-old Falls of New Hope neighborhood.
Falls of New Hope Association
Hennis victim of unfair play
Racial issues are complex in America. Blacks clearly have more than enough reason to be suspicious of whites. Recently Julie Hennis has been on the receiving end of charges against her for delinquency as an administrator in the Chapel Hill School system. Julie – in her career as parent, teacher, and administrator – has advocated for fair play for all students under her care. Those now throwing rocks by trashing her character or attempting to transfer her to a new job are clearly not practicing fair play.
School people and parents are in a big boat together, trying to make the world a better place through education. There are plenty of bigots outside the boat. Let’s spend our energy going after them while were support those who are spending their lives in long hours of care for our children. Julie Hennis is a dedicated professional who, in my view, does not deserve quiet fellow administrators and school board members who support a transfer from her present job because of thoughtless charges – unless her transfer is one she seeks and is to any higher position that she has long deserved.
Kenan Distinguished Chair of Creative Writing
Banning books cultural racism
At 17, I devoured “The Bluest Eye” one rainy Saturday, and it changed me. This tragic story of Pecola Breedlove, a young black girl raped by her father and shunned by her community, blew my white teen body angst out of the water with the ugliness of internalized racism. Pecola believed blue eyes and white skin would change everything.
According to a Sept. 1 N&O news article, East Wake High pulled “The Bluest Eye” and “The Color Purple” based on one parent's objection. Parent Dawn MacGibbon is right about one thing: There is incest in “The Bluest Eye” and rape in both novels. There is also incest in “Oedipus Rex” and rape in “The Handmaid's Tale.” But no one objects to these works by white authors on the A.P. reading list, but two novels by two black writers are inappropriate.
Contesting books about the struggles of African-Americans by two prize-winning African-American authors (among the white-dominated reading lists) troubles me. Removing them is injustice.
Shame on East Wake for silencing the African-American voices of these novels. The school just reinforced the cultural racism that makes young black girls like Pecola Breedlove long to be white.