Your letters, Oct. 2

October 1, 2013 

Please help keep roundabouts safe

There is a new traffic roundabout in Chapel Hill, connecting Sage and Weaver Dairy roads.

I realize that this is a new way of directing traffic for many in this part of the world. Yet, please use your common sense or just do it out of courtesy and use your turn signal once in the roundabout to let the rest of us know where you plan to leave it.

If not, those of us trying to enter the roundabout wait needlessly outside of it, slow down the traffic behind us, and increase the potential for an accident, since we don’t know what your intentions are.

Michael H. Hoppe

Chapel Hill

Point and shoot

“No gun-free utopia” (Letters, CHN, Sept. 25, proposes that armed citizens can stop armed criminals. The underlying assumption is that the gun-bearing citizen could hit the criminal. The data for gunfights involving the NYPD do not support this belief.

The hit ratio for NYPD (1994 -2000) was 38 percent at an encounter distance of 0-2 yards, 17 percent at 3-7 yards and 9 percent at 8 -15 yards: the mean hit probability, 1990-2000 was 15 percent. How likely is it that a citizen could achieve even these modest hit rates?

Citizens may believe their proficiency at the target range translates to a combat situation, but the NYPD comparison of range scores with combat hit rates was inconclusive. An explanation is that while sight alignment is fundamental to target shooting, there was no opportunity for sighting in 70 percent of the combat situations: it was point and shoot.

I suspect that a citizen’s experience in the controlled environment of the firing range induces a distorted, inflated view of their ability to confront an armed criminal.

Elliott Mills

Chapel Hill

Senior series a hit

Our Aging in Community series opened with a standing-room-only crowd of over 250 folks who heard architect and visionary Sarah Susanka share her “not-so-big” philosophy. Over 60 folks stayed on for a facilitated discussion which generated ideas for future programs and community initiatives. The interesting feedback from the follow-up survey will be shared with all who attended or registered.

Our venue has changed for our Oct. 15 and Nov. 19 programs. Keen interest in the upcoming programs on Shared Housing and Elder Cohousing has prompted us to move the programs from the Seymour Center to the larger “ballroom” space at the Central Orange Senior Center in Hillsborough.

Flyleaf Books is partnering with us as the bookseller for the series. Stop by the store. They have copies of Sarah Susanka’s books as well as books that relate to the upcoming programs. Among them: “My House, Our House,” a how-to-do-it account by three women who created their own collaborative household; and “The Senior Cohousing Handbook, a comprehensive guide by the architect who brought cohousing to the U.S., Chuck Durrett.

So hit the bookstore, then show up for program. I think you will find all the experiences pleasant! And don’t forget our film series at the Seymour center which continues Oct. 3 with “Slumdog Millionaire.”

Bolton Anthony


Second Journey

Dance for animals

A “Dance Concert for Shelter Animals” will be held on Friday, Oct. 4, at the Haw River Ballroom in Saxapahaw to raise awareness for euthanasia of shelter animals. The event is sponsored by the Goathouse Refuge for cats in Pittsboro and other rescue and animal-welfare partners.

Doors to the concert open at 7 p.m., with music starting at 8 p.m. Admission is by voluntary donation.

Headlining are Tres Chicas, a well known alt-country trio, joined by Mebanesville, a roots rhythm world music group; Piedmont poet picker Mark Cool; David George, an independent singer-songwriter; and others. Bagpiper Robert White will open the evening with a traditional procession.

During the evening, there will be two brief but important presentations by Michael R. Moyer, V.M.D., past director of the Shelter Animal Medicine Program at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, on the reasons gas chambers should never be used for animal euthanasia, and by Lisa Brockmeier, with FixNC, on the status of removing gas chambers from North Carolina animal shelters.

Despite professional standards of euthanasia, there are still many county shelters in North Carolina which are using gas chambers and other inhumane methods to destroy unwanted animals. Under these methods, innocent pets suffer in their last moments.

At the national level, Virginia Congressman Jim Moran, co-chairman of the Congressional Animal Protection Caucus, has introduced House Resolution 208 opposing the use of gas chambers to euthanize shelter animals and encouraging states to enact laws that require the use of injection as the standard method of euthanasia for all animal shelters.

For further information (including requests by other performers to participate in this event), call 919-542-6815 or go to or

Dale Chodorow

Chapel Hill

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