Noise a real problem
Regarding the news story “Google high-speed hut draws complaints in Carrboro” (CHN, April 24):
Noise pollution is a very real, unaddressed issue. Noise is harmful to human nervous systems. Old people like myself and my wife, Fran, have aged signal processors in our brains that are easily jammed by HVAC noise. Fortunately, noisey equipment has recently improved.
One son-in-law built an open kitchen/family-room where we could converse while the dishwasher was running. High-quality bearings and attention to noise suppression details by a German manufacturer were the reason that family-room activity could go uninterrupted by noise. Another son-in-law has a patio beside a heat-pump that is uninhabitable while the AC is running. The electric motors that drive the clap-trap that barely functions are cheap, unreliable original equipment that will someday be replaced by equipment built to today’s standards.
Never miss a local story.
Son-in-law No.1 is a professional HVAC engineer who is on the ASHRAE standard committee that writes the code. It turns out that high quality correlates with low noise. Replacement equipment for houses should be up to the new code (if local ordinances are revised). In the meantime, I expect Google Fiber Huts to show local government what would be possible if local building codes did not allow cheap, unreliable HVAC components.
Jack and Fran Farrell
Lack of communication
The larger issue concerning the Google Fiber Hut is the lack of communication about activities on town land that is in the middle of a residential area. This project was in the works for two or more years and we never heard anything about it, and our property is literally 20 feet from town land.
Enough noise already
Noise is the problem. We already have the constant background noise of OWASA; most of the time you don’t notice it but it is there, and OWASA is supposed to have all kinds of noise-abatement structures. This Google thing would be right next to Village Square, and its mega HVAC would be a constant tinnitus in our heads … or, worse yet, a keep-you-from-sleeping on-and-off thing depending on ambient temperature … there goes the neighborhood.
I know city people don’t mind living in noisy environments, but we silent types like the quiet and bought our houses here because it was quiet. Now Google comes into our backyard and sets up its little house of noises … and our hitherto fearless and lord high protector town leadership swoons in front of Google and lets itself be taken. Whatever, the question is now, can the damage be undone? Can those trees be replanted and can the Google contraption be sent elsewhere?
Dialogue, not demonize
As a Jew and member of Jewish Voice for Peace, and co-convener of the Abrahamic Initiative on the Middle East (aimeproject.org), I am compelled to answer Sunday’s letter from the Kehillah Synagogue leaders that ignores some key facts (“Do not demonize,” CHN, April 24).
The April 11 afternoon meeting in Town Hall was an open and public meeting, and was posted on the town’s webpage as a State Department International Visitors’ Leadership Program, coordinated by the International Focus group based in Raleigh. Little research was needed to determine the names and affiliations of the visitors hosted by our town.
None of the letter writers witnessed the afternoon conversation. One pastor stood up to comment at the end of a cordial two-hour conversation with Town Council members. He very politely introduced a glaring omission in the conversation by documenting the Israeli Occupation’s illegal and expanding settlements and impact on Palestinian life, whereupon visiting Knesset members called those in the audience “liars.”
When a Palestinian-American Muslim brother in attendance cried out in pain over the expropriation of his family’s farm in the West Bank and tens of thousands more Palestinian land holdings: “We can’t breathe,” he was greeted by a Likud member of the delegation: “You can’t breathe, but you can stab.” Chapel Hill attendees were the ones “demonized.” Respectful dialogue and debate ended, and a council member walked out in dismay over the Palestinian’s treatment by the Knesset member, a guest in our Town.
As Jews, we are commemorating the holiday of Passover, when ancient Hebrews were freed from bondage. But as Jews we also consecrate the holiday by calling for the liberation of all peoples held in chains, and all forms of discrimination against and demonization of the “other” in our own country’s grim history and current struggle to repeal the demonically legislated HB2.
It is not to “demonize” Israel when we acknowledge that Palestinians have been occupied by Israel for over a half century, their homes demolished and replaced by illegal Israeli settlements, their children detained in Israeli prisons, Gaza in ruins under successive Israeli bombing campaigns. It is not to “demonize” Israel to cite its human rights violations by internationally recognized and respected human rights organizations. It is not to demonize Israel to cite rabbis and interfaith social justice partners who fear the continued occupation threatens a just peace, but threatens Israel’s democracy and security. Yes, we must continue the dialogue and active engagement to assure all peoples live in dignity both here at home and abroad.
Thanks for dinner!
Thanks to everyone who played a part in making the 19th annual Community Dinner a resounding success. Close to 600 people gathered to eat food prepared by Mama Dip’s Kitchen, The Carolina Inn, The Chapel Hill Restaurant Group, The Chapel Hill Kehillah, Med Deli, K&W Cafeteria,Vimala’s Curryblossom Café, Margaret’s Cantina, Louise Parrish of the Carrboro Farmer’s Market, and other local restaurants who, together with many businesses and organizations, provided supplementary entrees and desserts.
We would particularly like to thank Mama Dip’’s Kitchen for cooking the lion’s share of 19 Community Dinners. All who attended enjoyed entertainment by the Monday Night Jammers, The Bucket Brothers, Paperhand Puppet Intervention, the Bouncing Bulldogs, KidzNotes and the First Baptist Church Choir. Sound was by Erich Lieth. Ron Stutts of WCHL1360 and Marlyn Valeiko, from Orange County’’s Department of Housing, Human Rights and Community Development, were the emcees.
This year’s event was an overwhelming success, in part, because of the efforts of so many people who have worked on dinners for the past 18 years. The event is designed to bring people together who might not ordinarily cross paths, and this year’s dinner shows that the event continues to be an important part of the community’s annual calendar. This year’’s dinner reflected even more concerted efforts to include locally sourced foods on the menu and to be a zero waste event (over 90 percent composted or recycled) thanks to Anna Peepers and Blair Pollock of Orange County's Waste Management Department.
Without your help and donations, we would not have been able to offer such an exceptional dinner for so modest a ticket price. By keeping the event truly affordable (and by underwriting an unprecedented number of tickets), we were able to host citizens from every income level, and every ethnic, special-needs and age group. In this way the dinner enhances the spirit of diversity in the community. To those of you who attended this year’s event, we are sure no explanation is needed regarding the benefit of such happenings as the Community Dinner. Our shared understanding and pride in community is, as we know, even stronger as a result of this year’s event, and we look forward to seeing you daily in the community and at the dinner next year.
Mildred Council (Mama Dip) and Nerys Levy
Community Dinner Committee
Please send letters of up to 300 words to firstname.lastname@example.org. All submissions and online comments may be edited for space and clarity. Thank you.