Chapel Hill: Opinion

What you’re saying: Chris Lillie, Steve Case, Charles Humble and Judith Ferster

How about a Lloyd Park?

I know it may be presumptuous and perhaps naive of me to make this suggestion, but here goes.

How about combining some retail construction with a “Lloyd Park” which retains the pond and some surrounding natural area?

This would give the Lloyd family and the town a lasting legacy, provide a tax write-off, limit impervious surface to reduce flooding, and reduce traffic due to reduced commercial construction.

We are all here(on earth) for a short time, and as we see the great beyond slowly approaching. Wouldn’t it be something to leave a legacy of beauty to last for years to come?

I would rather say I left a park than a parking lot. Perhaps thinking out of the box would give the Lloyds what they want as well as a great gift to the people of Carrboro. I would guess there would be more support for this rather than packing the property with controversial development which poses threats to the local community. Perhaps this is a compromise that we could all live with.

Chris Lillie


Racial healing

My favorite quote from Martin Luther King is:

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

I have a minister friend who talks often about “coming in the opposite spirit.” When you see hatred, show love. When you see darkness, bring light.

During the Civil War, approximately 620,000 men died. This is more than the total of all the other wars in which our nation has been involved. I realize that slavery was not the only cause of the Civil War. But, we all know that one of the main results of the Civil War was that legal slavery in America was ended.

I have a challenge for my black brothers and sisters in America today. If you truly want to see racial healing in America, come in the opposite spirit. Act in love rather than hate. I believe that if blacks in America would begin to hold memorial services to honor and thank the hundreds of thousands of white men who gave their lives to secure freedom for black men and women, that the power of God’s Holy Spirit would move on our nation and bring greater healing than we can begin to imagine.

I challenge you. Do you truly want racial healing? Then begin to honor those who gave their lives for your freedom.

Steve Casey

Stonewall, Louisiana

TOD a worthy goal, but ...

Thanks for the Trip to Fantasyland, Matt Bailey, Jason Baker, and Molly De Marco (“Three problems transit-oriented development can help solve in Chapel Hill,” CHN May 21), although you should have cited GoTriangle for use of their script. Our time would have been better spent with a critical review of the claims GoTriangle makes, so I will help provide that.

Transit oriented development (TOD) is a worthy goal. It would be good if Chapel Hill had more opportunity to do that, but almost all that potential for that along the Durham-Orange Light Rail Transit project lies in Durham County, not here. Orange County takes the risk, Durham County gets the gain.

Likewise, affordable housing is a good thing, but developers hoping to work along DOLRT line have already described how property values (think: “rents”) will increase. That will just drive away those needing lower-cost housing. Simply repeating “affordable housing, affordable housing etc”) does not change the effect on affordable housing along the line.

As far as helping Chapel Hillians get to and from UNC and UNC Hospitals: ask yourself how often you need to go to UNC and UNC Hospitals. Then ask yourself if you live anywhere close to the proposed rail line. In the meantime, let’s hope our town and county leaders adequately fund the Bus Rapid Transit program that would serve areas of dense growth already approved along MLK Boulevard. That funding took an 84 percent cut when the DOLRT budget exploded to $3.3 billion.

Charles Humble

Chapel Hill

Donald Trump the child

I just heard and saw excerpts of Donald Trump’s commencement address at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, and I was disgusted. He complained like a 10-year-old child about being treated so unfairly. It wasn’t about the graduates, it was about Baby Donald.

When I was commissioned as an ensign in the Navy in 1970, I remember that the speaker, a retired officer, provided sound advice for new officers that I remember to this day: your word is your bond; see things through. It did not include complaining about life being unfair.

Robert G. Harrison


Bitter lessons

As Memorial Day approaches, it’s difficult for me not to slide into depression when I think about war.

You’d imagine we’d have learned the lessons so bitterly taught to us by Vietnam, but each successive president – whether it’s with the abdication or support of Congress – seems to think that getting Americans slaughtered while simultaneously killing innocent civilians is worth it. Compelling reasons are always mustered up to “send in the troops.”

As in Vietnam, we never see realistic estimates of the children, women and elderly killed, or the schools, hospitals, water plants and houses that we’ve ultimately destroyed.

A general might say: “Just give me 5,000 more troops, a free hand, and we can win.” Really? Just how many military and civilian casualties constitute victory?

“With respect, sir, I’ve a proposal. If you fail to achieve this win you will be reduced in rank to 2nd Lt., will forfeit all pay, all allowances and pay differentials, as well as your retirement; and so will all your staff and subordinate commanding officers.”

“Now, General, can you tell us again just how many troops you’ll need and how soon you can deliver this marvelous victory?”

Tom Eagen


Lt. Col. USMC, retired

Israel and injustice

Peter Reitzes quotes Yossi Klein Halevi to say that the right of return will destroy Israel (“Demographic destruction,” CHN May 7), but then quotes Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbass as saying “I am not asking for a right of return.” The resolution to that contradiction must be negotiated. It may include compensation to those who do not return to Israel within the green line, but it must include acknowledgment of the internationall recognized right of return.

Amy Rosenthal (“Misjudging Israel” CHN May 10) is right that Israel did not create the refugee camps in the West Bank and Gaza. The United Nations Relief and Works Agency in response to the stream of people dispossessed by the creation of Israel in 1948, some of whom were further disposed by the Six-Day War in 1967, when Israel took over East Jerusalem, the Golan Heights, the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip. Since many villages were destroyed in both conflicts, the people who lived in them had nowhere to go. It’s correct that refugees are not in tents anymore, but rooms are tiny, poverty rates are high, and the Israeli Defense Forces come in at will. If you search for Palestinian refugee camps on YouTube, you can take a tour.

Why hasn’t Hamas rebuilt the infrastructure of Gaza, including the damage resulting from the Israeli attack in 2014? Among other things, even having removed its settlements in Gaza, Israel controls what goes in and out, things like concrete, which is needed for rebuilding. Gaza, unlike Israel, is under siege (see below response to Ravitch).

Josh Ravitch (“Middle East Bottom Line” CHN May 14) and I agree that both Israel and the United States fail to give all citizens equal rights. Palestinian Israelis regularly refuse land swaps as another means of ethnic cleansing. If they do not want to leave the land of their foreparents for Arab countries in which they have no roots, that may be less surprising than it first appears. That’s why the Jewish homeland was not created in Germany, Siberia, Africa, or any other of the proposed regions. Israel is not under siege from Gaza – sieges involve cutting off supplied to the besieged so that they will surrender. Israeli historian Ilan Pappé has a new book commemorating the 50th year of the occupation: “Ten Myths about Israel.” You can start reading it on Amazon.

Dear Zionists: A state that is a homeland for the Jews exists. With one of the world’s most powerful armies including nuclear weapons, it is secure. Is is time to admit that its creation and maintenance involve injustice. The peoples on that land need some truth in order to reconcile and live together on that much-storied and much-contested land. Jews and others in the diaspora, too.

Judith Ferster

Chapel Hill