I would like to commend the Chapel Hill Police Department, especially Patrol Officers Turner and Greenlee, for their professionalism.
Earlier this month, a drunken driver whose husband was apparently passed out in the back seat and whose 15-month-old son was not in a car seat ran amuck on our property (criss-crossing the lawn, hitting a tree and sideswiping one of our cars).
Before I even finished calling 911, the officers were on site tending first to the needs of the baby, who was taken to the hospital by ambulance, then arresting mother and father. From what I could tell, both parents were incoherent and how or why they were driving in the first place is beyond me.
Thank you CHPD.Steven PetrowChapel Hill Becton is a leader
Thank you for the column regarding Daniel Becton and his leadership in Project Ubuntu (CHN, Feb. 8). I encourage everyone to check it out further at www.projectubuntu.info.
I had the honor of working with Daniel at CHHS and have been witness to his gifts and his dedication to service for many years. He is a natural and charismatic leader who represents the best in all of us - regardless of generation, religion or politics. He acts on his beliefs and is making the world a better place through his own belief and determination that one person can make a difference.
I am extremely proud to know Daniel. I hope you will support this project if you can. I know your money will be spent to make our America "seize our chance to become great" through love, service and lots of hard work.Mary GratchChapel HillTown is stagnant
Town Councilwoman Laurin Eastholm doesn't know her own process ("Town Council values its advisory boards," CHN, Feb. 12)!
She says the approval process in Chapel Hill is not a "long, drawn-out negotiation" but in reality that is an exceptionally correct description of it! A negotiation with boards and commissions and staff, making all THEIR recommended changes only to get before the council and have them say "Nope, we don't like it, go back and start over." Why would anyone ever try to build anything in this town? Now wonder it feels stagnant and stuck.
Many people say the end product is "better for it." I say that after a developer makes all the changes that everyone requires, the end result has become neutered of its creativity and originality and creators are numbed of this enthusiasm.
Council members and community leaders SAY they want creativity, diversity and bold new ideas. But by the time a project is taken through the "system" one project looks like another. Fresh vision and inspiration are suppressed and compromised; the results could be built in "Anytown USA."
Our council's vision comes from a consultant, a study, a committee, a task force, a review forum, a retreat or a citizen board made up of single-minded individuals with a political agenda, so focused on re-election that they are frozen by trying to please all the people all the time. Meanwhile, the downtown remains vacant and dowdy, new neighborhoods have streets wide enough for highway traffic. I can't tell one from the other unless I happen to see the sign on the way in (and remember what it said).
Chapel Hill used to be worth fighting the fight. It used to have interest, quirkiness, charm. Now, the drive for neutral perfection, lest anyone be offended is blending us into a boring blob. This council is dower, and the system slow and plodding and leading to monotonous, monotone, mediocre results.William H. HathawayChapel HillFight rare diseases
I am writing to alert readers of a special, international effort that's happening on Leap Day. Millions of people around the globe will observe World Rare Disease Day on Feb. 29 to focus attention on rare diseases as a public health issue.
In the United States, a disease is considered rare if it affects fewer than 200,000 people. Some rare diseases such as Lou Gehrig's disease (ALS) are well known to the public, but many others, like Retinoschisis (progressive splitting of the layers of the retina) which affects several family members, are not. You can imagine the challenges of having a vision-robbing disease that most people have never heard of, and that currently has no cure. It started as night blindness, then progressive tunnel vision that has made navigating life's ... events challenging and left my husband unable to drive.
The Foundation Fighting Blindness funds cutting-edge research that will lead to treatments for blinding retinal diseases like Retinoschisis, and is working to raise awareness through World Rare Disease Day and ongoing public education outreach. Their efforts give me great hope.
Nearly 30 million Americans (about 1 in 10) have rare diseases, so we all likely know someone affected. I encourage readers to visit www.FightBlindness.org/RDD
to learn more about World Rare Disease Day and to see how affected individuals are expressing themselves.Karen FisherChapel HillHelp keep us safe
Everyone deserves the right to live in a safe community free from gun violence. For the past few months, many of you have worked with us to keep loaded guns out of places where children play. Now, we ask for your help again.
Like the majority of North Carolina families, North Carolinians Against Gun Violence believes in sensible gun laws. In fact, a recent poll found that 72 percent of North Carolinians disagree with permitting people to carry handguns in restaurants and bars.Despite this overwhelming opposition, this session we face another tough battle to defeat House Bill 111. If passed, this bill will force restaurants and bars to allow loaded, hidden guns unless they post a sign.In anticipation of this bill, we are reaching out to local restaurants across the state to ask them to remain gun free. Ask your local restaurants to join our campaign to promote Eat in Peace. Please print out the pledge form and take it to the places you eat with your family.Help us deliver the message, "Just like most residents I will not feel safer with loaded, hidden guns in your restaurant. I deserve to eat in peace." Use this link to download the pledge form: www.safernc.org/eat_in_peaceRoxane KolarExecutive directorDon't judge peopleI am working on my communication badge for my troop and one requirement is writing to an editor of our local paper. I read the article on civil rights (My View, CHN, Feb. 19) and I think the writer's right: Some officers do judge people by the color of their skin. This happened once in New York when a guy wearing a hood and a beard was arrested because of the way he looked when he was innocent and did nothing wrong.Clayton WattersBoy Scout Troop 845Carrboro
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