A recent guest column by Barbara Trent concerned the vacant Chrysler building occupation (CHN, Feb. 26, http://bit.ly/zJanFN
Trent leaves no doubt where her sympathies lie, which is her right, but then speaks to her real agenda, also her right, which is to attack property owners (and their constitutional rights).
She, unbelievingly, looks to Nicaragua for solutions by comparing the fleeing dictator's abandonment of properties in that country with the Chrysler building situation. She champions the subsequent rulers of Nicaragua for taking over vacant properties and suggests we do the same here (through more eminent domain laws).
Judging by her past works, her views are consistent with what I believe is her socialist ideology where the government would be in charge of property rights( and for that matter all citizen rights) for "the betterment of all" since we, the people, don't have a clue.
She states "At the very least any abandoned buildings should be taxed at a much higher rate than occupied buildings," with owners restricted ("encouraged") as to who may occupy the property. Who needs a constitution?
Ms. Trent, I have a suggestion. If you own a home and plan on leaving it empty for an extended vacation, you could avoid having it classified as abandoned and paying the increased taxes that you propose, just by asking all of the illegal occupiers of vacant buildings to move in until your return. Is that a problem?
One more question: How have the people of Nicaragua done under the regime that Ms. Trent seems very fond of? Look it up.Karl Plofker Chapel HillCole Park concern
The businesses that will be most hurt by this new Walmart (CHN, March 4, http://bit.ly/xkGWaA
) are those in Cole Park Plaza: Lowe's grocery store, the Dollar Store, the auto parts store, and the CVS. Pope's hardware has already decided to close down, but I imagine the True Value hardware on Lystra Church Road will also be negatively impacted.
The Walmart will offer new products, such as clothing, toys, and kitchen and bath goods, so why will most people not use them for everything? If I owned one of the stores at Cole Park Plaza, I would be hopping mad with Chatham County. I'm hoping the Cole Park Plaza owners will deny this new shopping area access to their water and sewer connections.Terri Buckner Via the OrangeChat blogGrowing older
Come and have your input on how to make Orange County an ideal place to grow older. For many months, countless Orange County residents and professionals have worked to identify both the existing and needed services for senior adults and their families.
Out of this, the Master Aging Plan (MAP) for 2012-2017 was created. It has goals and recommendations on how to address the identified needs. The next step is to have public comments on it. Your input is important to the MAP's success!
Come and tell us if something was missed. It's extremely important to get the plan right, because it will impact future community services and county budget allocations. If you want something to be developed, expanded or changed that is not mentioned in the MAP, we need to hear from you.
Commenting on the MAP is easy! You can get a copy from either the Seymour Center on Homestead Road in Chapel Hill, or the Central Orange Senior Center next to the SportsPlex in Hillsborough. You can return the MAP's review sheet in the back to either senior center. The MAP is also available at www.co.orange.nc.us/aging
. Or you can send an email with your comments to Janice Tyler, Director of the Orange County Department on Aging at email@example.com or 919-968-2071.
Public comment meetings will be held:
• Tuesday, March 13 (10 a.m.) and Monday, March 19 (6:30 p.m.) Robert and Pearl Seymour Center (2551 Homestead Road, Chapel Hill)
• Thursday, March 15 (7 p.m.) and Monday, March 19 (11 a.m.) Central Orange Senior Center (103 Meadowland Drive, Hillsborough)
• Wednessday, March 21 (2 p.m.) Century Center (Greensboro Street, Carrboro)
• Wednesday, March 21 (6 p.m.) Lattisville Grove Church (1701 Jimmy Ed Road and Walnut Grove Church Road, Hurdle Mills)
• Thursday, March 22 (10 a.m.) McCoys Temple (207 Tinnin Road and Highway 70, Efland)Katherine Leight Co-chairNot easy being avocal conservative
As a student at UNC-Chapel Hill, it is not exactly easy to be a vocal conservative, particularly a vocal social conservative. On a number of occasions, I have publicly voiced my strong support for Amendment One on campus. Those statements have been followed up with several emails, Facebook messages, and even text messages, attacking me personally for my position. The school newspaper, The Daily Tarheel, did not exactly help when it published five letters riddled with personal attacks after I spoke out against Dan Savage, a radical homosexual being paid with student money to speak on campus.
Despite all these attacks (and in some cases threats), I refuse to stand down, and neither should other marriage supporters across North Carolina. Amendment One is bigger than ourselves. It is about ensuring that North Carolina families remail strong; it is about ensuring religious freedom; it is about ensuring that voters decide how to define marriage. I say to my fellow marriage supporters keep up the good fight no matter what roadblocks stand in the way.Brendan Madigan Chapel Hill Support cell phone ban
Monday night, March 12, the Chapel Hill Town Council will vote on a proposed ban on use of cell phones while driving. If this passes, many lives and major injuries caused by auto accidents will be avoided. As an insurance professional, I support the passage of this proposal.
Why should you think twice before using your cell phone while driving? "Studies show that driving while talking on a cell phone is extremely dangerous and puts drivers at a four times greater risk of a crash," says Janet Froetsher, president and CEO of the National Safety Council. Each year, it's estimated to cause:
• 636,000 crashes
• 330,000 injuries
• 12,000 major injuries
• 2,600 deaths
• $43 billion in damages
States and local jurisdictions are responding to the dangers with a variety of new laws. Cell phone use by novice drivers is restricted in many states. Some states have banned handheld cell phone use. Some states have banned texting.
When talking absolutely can't wait
• Always use a hands-free device.
• Pull over to make calls. Even hands-free talking can be distracting. So move safely out of traffic and make your call while parked.
• Keep your hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. Use voice-activated controls when talking is absolutely necessary.Pam Herndon State Farm Insurance
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