The death of a neighbor is a time for compassion, not snide comments
I am writing on this Sunday morning after the suicide of my neighbor, the man who hanged himself from a tree on the greenbelt. I read on a few blogs some pretty awful response to the man’s action.
This man and his family live just a few houses down from me for a couple of years. He was not a bad person; he was a man who was having a very hard time in life (and) things were not coming easy to him. (Still), he was a good neighbor: he kept his house clean, he was not loud, he really minded his own business.
The one thing that I noticed the most is how much he really loved his children. He would play ball with them, take them to the park, ride bikes with them and you could see the love that he had for these children.
We should be a community of love and compassion not a community of judgment and blame.
An open letter to ‘Johnny the repentant thief’
I was shocked and dismayed when I came out of the house on a recent Saturday morning, at 6:15 a.m., only to find my car door open and my golf clubs stolen from the trunk of my car at my East Rockledge Road home.
Low and behold, imagine my surprise, when the wife calls just 90 minutes later to report that the doorbell rings, and before she can get downstairs the early ringer had dashed away on foot (so if he told you he apologized face-to-face like a man, he’s fibbing again), but the “early ringer/riser had left my golf clubs at the front door.
I can only surmise that you as good parents caught “young Johnny” with my clubs (or perhaps Johnny you decided to do the “right thing” on your own), and made him bring them back. Either way, for that I am extremely grateful and I thank you very much.
However, later that morning I call the wife to do a quick inventory and guess what? It turns out that the returned clubs are missing my Nike Driver ($200+) and Callaway nine-wood (about $100). (Johnny if you’re going to correct the “error of your ways,” at least try to do the right thing, RIGHT).
Since I know that your briefly misguided Johnny would never intentionally let you/us down twice, I can only surmise that when Johnny purloined my clubs he was in the company of (“undoubtedly that bad influences on Johnny and the masterminds of this plot”) “Skippy The Loser” and/or “Biff The Vile,” whom I’m confident most likely have my driver and nine-wood.
I would greatly appreciate if you could have another one of your forthright conversations with young Johnny (while we respect that he took the full blame, and isn’t a rat), and please ask him firmly if perhaps he may have been with “Skippy and/or Biff” when he absconded with my sticks?
Since this is the likely answer (unless Johnny still needs more direct counseling and he still has my clubs), I would then greatly appreciate it if you could then grab “STL and BTV” by the scruff of their necks and demand they return my two clubs (you also might suggest that going forward they keep their scumbag selves away from “The Newly Repentant Johnny”).
Thanks for any consideration you may give this request.
Build the freeway
I am in favor of replacing Pecos Road with a freeway. I have resided 1.25 miles from Pecos Road for 24 years and don’t think the freeway will affect my residence one way or another. I occasionally have reasons for going to the West side and would welcome a shorter, quicker trip.
I find the letters, pro or con, on the freeway entertaining and even, in some cases, tear-jerking.
The children, the pollution, the noise, blah blah. Each side claims to represent the majority. What a bunch of baloney. If a vote were held, picking one of three choices; for, against, or don’t care, the don’t cares would win!
Jon Talton, who no longer publishes columns in the city newspaper because of his irrational behavior, has found a home in Ahwatukee Foothills for his behavior (“On the edge of Waterloo,” AFN, Aug. 5).
Indeed, Obama is under attack from the Right, but not for his efforts to solve our economic problems. Most people I know are willing to give Obama a chance, even if, like Talton, they have misgivings about rewarding financial blunders.
Obama’s Waterloo, like that of Napoleon, was a battlefield of his own choosing. His problem is that there are serious misgivings about his definitions of the problems we are trying to solve and the solutions he proposes to deal with them. There are also suspicions that he is not being truthful about his objectives and strategy. The rhetoric focuses on some vaguely defined number of Americans without health care insurance – 40M? 50M? 60M? The data used to support the argument states that the number measured was 44M and a large fraction are not Americans but uninvited visitors. Another large fraction are Americans, but who make more than enough money to purchase health care and choose to be self-insured, leaving only about 15M Americans who need some sort of help. A focus on this group would gain more support than the shotgun approach devised by the Administration.
Talton is correct when he focuses on the cost of medical care in the U.S. – indeed it is much more expensive than elsewhere. His faculties for reason leave him, however, when he assigns the blame. For example, one of the favorite targets that Talton zeros in on is the health insurance industry that has “enormous profits.” Exactly what are these enormous profits that we can extract from our health costs? Talton must have checked, if he knew enough about them to characterize them as “enormous.” I suspect that Talton does know that typical health insurance company profits run at 2 to 3 percent of revenues, and that includes the profits from investments. Is the elimination of those “enormous” profits going to make a dent in medical costs? Obama has been told by the CBO that his dream of saving money through his introduction of a public health insurance system is just that – a dream.
Perhaps there is somebody somewhere who has a grasp on the elements of our health care costs and why they are so high. Certainly it isn’t Talton. Given Obama’s conflicts with the CBO, he also seems to be clueless. I would suggest, however, that before we try to solve this problem, we should have a grasp as to what it is – beyond meaningless ideological rhetoric. Unfortunately, we may not be happy with the answer. The problem may be us and our high expectations for health care.
Robert C Sundahl
Same old argument
Food for thought. As someone who is only a few years away from retirement, many of my friends and acquaintances are at the same stage in life that I am. The conservative Republicans among them refer to the health reform proposals being put forth by Democrats in Congress as “Obamacare” and socialism. I find it very interesting that in the next sentence these very same people talk fondly about being eligible for “FDR Social Security” and “LBJ Medicare” in the next few years.
Gee, weren’t those two programs denounced as socialism by the conservative Republicans of their day?
Protect CEO’s: oppose health care reform
Why are Republicans against market competition, more choices and better access, and cheaper premiums in the health care business? Perhaps they are fine with the monopolies held by the insurance corporations. So an urgent warning: protect CEOs and rich Republicans everywhere: defeat health reform NOW!
Keep abortion out of health care reform
Like many Americans I am concerned about the health insurance industry’s practices, which too often put profits before people. I understand the sentiment for the administration’s health insurance reform proposals, and believe they deserve reasoned debate in Congress. There is a more important issue at stake, however: the right to life.
Congress has consistently voted to prohibit the public funding of abortion, and this provision should be an explicit part of any health insurance reform that is sent to the president’s desk. This issue is too important to leave in the hands of a panel of bureaucrats or an activist judge. While Congress is in recess, it is expected to listen to its constituents, so I urge your readers to make their views on this issue known to their elected representatives.
I belong to a non-partisan grassroots organization called the Center for Moral Clarity, which has online resources to easily accomplish this (it’s easy to find on a search engine such as Google). I urge your readers to join me in raising our voices to make sure we do not become complicit in funding abortions under the guise of health care reform.
Traffic circles ineffective, confusing
Thank you for your Aug. 19 article “Few are happy with traffic circles,” which was printed in the Ahwatukee Foothills News.
We are amazed that this concept was even considered to reduce speed in a residential neighborhood. Aside from being unsightly and confusing they are totally ineffective. They often serve as an inviting challenge to the perturbed driver, or an invitation to speed up and test his/her driving skills.
To others the traffic circles are simply confusing. Some slow down as if they are lost, and others stop prior to exiting the restriction and assuming their normal speed.
Many of us use 36th Street or Equestrian several times a day to accomplish our daily tasks. Apparently a neighborhood group was formed to review the speeding problems on these streets? It will be appreciated if the committee be expanded and formalized so that those living in the neighborhood, although not on 36th Street or Equestrian, may provide input.
Some ideas that will work is to install yield signs at the minor intersections on both 36th and Equestrian. Speed bumps are even preferable to traffic circles as the driver at least understands why they are placed on the roadway. It is also noted that when the portable radar speed monitor was placed adjacent to the roadway traffic slowed down.
Thank you for keeping the entire neighborhood and traveling public informed as it pertains to this matter. Without the Ahwatukee Foothills News few would know that these unsightly orange contraptions placed in the middle of the roadway are not designated landing spots for flying saucers.