While it is laudable that GoTriangle and the Durham City Council have recently discovered the importance of N.C. Central University (DN, Aug. 25), it is amazing that they have just now discovered that NCCU was missing from the original Durham-Orange Light Rail Project plan (despite years of letters from public).
The Final Environmental Impact Study (FEIS) was submitted to the federal government and now GoTriangle is projecting that an NCCU stop may have the highest station ridership in Durham? What does that say about the efficacy of the DOLRT planning? Surely we as taxpayers deserve better!
With the N.C. General Assembly reiterating a 10 percent state funding cap (and requiring DOLRT project be re-evaluated in two years with other competing state requests in the state transportation budget), GoTriangle is desperately trying to perpetuate DOLRT fantasy by shifting objectives yet again.
Meantime, GoTriangle bureaucracy continues, consuming our hard-earned tax monies, studying and restudying the same information, desperately hoping for a different answer (and inflated ridership) to perpetuate this ill-conceived albatross of a project called DOLRT without addressing local residents’ concerns. DOLRT will serve less than 2 percent of our current population!
And within 72 hours of GoTriangle’s press release, our elected Durham officials unanimously approve the expansion of a $1.6 billion project with only cursory public comment.
Stop this madness. Stop this runaway train. We need a viable transit plan. Where is Plan B?
Questions for superintendent
I am writing this letter to request Superintendent Bert L’Homme to be more transparent in his plans to improve the Durham Public Schools system.
This letter is definitely not a campaign against L’Homme, but I would like to see his plan so kids, parents, teachers, and administrators can be held accountable.
To be more specific I would like to know what programs are being designed to teach the kids and parents to be more accountable for their success? What are we doing to increase the number of kids going to after-school tutoring? How do we get more parents to keep successful students in DPS instead of choosing charter and private schools? What are our plans to improve end of grade testing scores? What are our plans to improve college readiness?
A terrible law
I am disgusted by the finger-pointing over HB2. Since Gov. McCrory and the Republican legislature passed this disastrous law, North Carolina has lost thousands of jobs and $395 million. The costs continue to climb, now that the NCAA and the ACC have canceled their tournaments here.
Gov. McCrory and the Republicans wrote and signed this bill in just 12 hours back in March. Since then, the damage to North Carolina’s economy and our reputation have continued to grow.
McCrory initially claimed the whole thing was a vast left-wing conspiracy. Now he says it’s a national issue and we need to wait for the courts to decide.
McCrory needs to repeal this terrible law. We can’t afford to wait, and we certainly can’t afford any more of Governor McCrory’s finger-pointing.
Many people, including our benighted governor, have tried to use the label “hypocrite” to tar organizations, such as the NCAA, that are boycotting North Carolina over House Bill 2. Why? Because they are not also boycotting other countries or states with similar laws. This argument is pure nonsense; it tells us, in effect, that we are not allowed to protest one injustice unless we protest them all. Really?
And it overlooks the unfortunate fact that the North Carolina situation is particularly egregious, with a state law rushed through in a special session, without public comment, specifically to overturn a lawfully passed local ordinance, and then immediately signed by a governor who apparently did not bother to read it.
HB2 took away existing rights (despite lies to the contrary) and took away the ability of localities to control some of their own affairs.
And then we saw the astonishing parade of lies uttered by the Republicans ever since, led by that drum major of lies “it’s for the safety of our wives and daughters.”
Shame on the North Carolina government and sympathy to the many people and businesses suffering as a result.
Regarding the news article “Reaction to the ACC’s decision to move championship game” (Sept. 15, N&O): It was no surprise that reactions to the NCAA and ACC moving sporting events out of the state because of House Bill 2 divided down partisan lines. However, the statement from Rep. Richard Hudson stuck out.
Hudson claimed, with no apparent evidence, that the decisions by the ACC and NCAA were “blatant political move(s).” I respectfully disagree.
The ACC and NCAA very clearly stated they were opposed to state-sponsored discrimination – not Republicans. If Hudson chooses to equate the N.C. GOP with discrimination, that is his position, not the ACC’s or NCAA’s.
Far worse than Hudson’s gross over-generalizations, however, was what he said next. Hudson promised he would use his position of power in Congress to investigate the NCAA’s and ACC’s tax-exempt status. This is a textbook example of political retaliation, and it is disgraceful.
The ACC and NCAA have plenty of Republicans in their leadership ranks, and accusing the organizations of partisanship is absurd.
While Hudson may see everything from sunrise to gravity as having a political slant and deserving of congressional investigation, the rest of us are rather sick of these dog and pony show hearings.
Jarvis John Edgerton
A heartless country
Regarding “Durham high school student deported to El Salvador,” (DN, Aug. 28)
In 2014, thousands of unaccompanied minors fled El Salvador and Honduras from threats of rape, sexual enslavement and murder because of the collapse of government control and society due to the overpowering influence of drug gangs fueled by our insatiable desire for recreational drugs.
The U.S. treated these children has hostiles, blocking buses trying to relocate them in communities where they could be safe, pressuring the U.S. government to send them back to their deaths.
Many were allowed to be processed and stay – but only until they reach 18 and then ICE swoops in when they are on their way to school, captures them, wisks them immediately out of state, and deports to the very hell they escaped.
Why? Because the country has lost its humanity, its Christian sense of charity and love, and has embraced a selfish, egocentric, immorality of me first and no one else, a heartless country that will reap the whirlwind for turning away kids and sending them into harm's way.
Our uncivilized health care world
When we left for our trip to the U.K. three weeks ago, the press was full of news about the high cost of EpiPens ($600) and the fact that Aetna was leaving the N.C. health insurance market.
Our high cost of pharmaceuticals and health care in general is because we believe in free enterprise and capitalism and that the market will regulate itself. EpiPens cost so much here because it’s what the market will bear, and Aetna most likely left because it was unable to make enough money from providing health care in N.C.
Once in the U.K., one in our group realized that his EpiPen was expiring. We went to a National Health Service clinic and within five minutes were advised about the process for obtaining a replacement. The cost would be less than $12, but because our friend was over 60, it was free.
I continue to be amazed that the U.S. is the only First World country that allows profit-making in every aspect of our health care system: insurance companies, pharmaceuticals, medical centers, medical devices, electronic health records, etc. We call it an industry, and many of us invest (directly or indirectly) in its different components. And it employs large contingents of lobbyists, for which we also pay. But our health status and mortality statistics are far from the top of the list.
When will we wake up and join the civilized world?
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