Letters to the editor
Published 1:01 am, Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Suburbs need to step up
Here we go again. Is it not enough that Bridgeport houses various criminals, juvenile offenders, numerous homes for disadvantaged, mentally challenged adults and domestic and troubled youths placed in foster domiciles?
Must we be sought as a refuge for all the troubled juvenile females in the Greater Bridgeport area? What is wrong with Fairfield, Trumbull, Westport, Darien, etc.?
Must Bridgeport be the suppository of all the emotional and criminal ills in the metropolitan area?
When are the suburbs going to step up to the plate and assume their responsibilities to shoulder some ownership for these problems by opening their doors and silently adapt or cry "NIMBY" (that is, Not In My Back Yard)?
Truly it is time for us to refuse to be an appropriate and available "landfill" for everybody's human pain, especially when these problems are social, non-territorial and common to all of us.
Finally, while Bridgeport does have the land (even if it is owned by the state) it does not mean or mandate that other communities should not be excluded as a viable or real choice, and not look only to Bridgeport or any other city as a panacea for these current mutual dilemmas.
Wedged in the paper, in the midst of letters of thanks to the public from grateful candidates, was the diatribe from a former and a current member of the RTM full of invective and attacks on First Selectman Ken Flatto's reputation, honesty and forthrightness.
I work for the town, in the current administration, and I, along with others, are doing all we can to see the third train station built for the benefit of Fairfielders. We all wish the ribbon-cutting ceremony had already occurred.
Facts have a tendency to intrude into otherwise possibly interesting arguments and opinions. The reasons behind the Town's entering the train agreement are beside the point. Arguments for and against the contract were made and the vote was taken. As the RTM writers well know, the contract was considered, reviewed, and approved by all town bodies more than eight years ago.
Having finished the game, the teams left the field and went home. Long after the last whistle, a group of "concerned" citizens wants us all to come back to the stadium. First, they alleged a number of FOI abuses and sued the town. Case dismissed. Next, they alleged all sorts of ethical lapses and sought redress by an independent ethics commission. Not satisfied with the dismissal of their trumped up charges they appealed to the courts. Case dismissed. Now, a third case is pending. We shall see.
It is undeniable by even a casual observer that the train station capital project (substantially dependent on private funding) is a victim of the financial meltdown the entire country is experiencing. It is also undeniable that a third train station will benefit commuting Fairfielders, help revitalize an area of Fairfield which could certainly use it, and provide tax revenue to the town. The core issue is not who is, or should have been, the developer. That train left the station long ago. The core issue now is to get a working train station built and operational which can begin to provide the aforementioned benefits. This group of "concerned" citizens is clearly not concerned with providing these benefits to Fairfielders.
Fairfield deserves better than constant back-biting and mud-slinging in the paper and the courts. The train station is being built. "All aboard!"
Chief of Staff,
Town of Fairfield
On Dec. 2, the Fairfield Public Library's third annual One Book One Town book selection will be revealed. The community will travel across two cultures on an unforgettable journey.
Last March, more than 2,000 Fairfield residents, ranging from young children to engaged seniors, took part in a variety of town-wide programs focused on the fantasy of The Invention of Hugo Cabret, by Brian Selznick. In 2008, the first One Book One Town selection, Three Cups of Tea, by Greg Mortenson, inspired the community.
Partnering with community organizations including the Fairfield Arts Council, Fairfield University, the Fairfield Museum and History Center, the Fairfield Public Schools and the Friends of the Fairfield Public Library, a full calendar of events will again revolve around this year's selection.
Join the Fairfield Public Library on an unforgettable journey beginning on Dec. 2. Join the community-wide read in March 2010.
One Book One Town,
Democrats out of touch
I found it rather disturbing that in a recent interview, Robert Greenberger (RTM District 8) attributed the Democratic party's crushing defeat Nov. 3 to citizens being displeased with the national political climate and, consequently, voting Republican locally. That is why he and his Democratic colleagues are no longer in office here in Fairfield.
As a registered independent voter, I -- and like-minded citizens -- vote on how effective local governance is at administering our tax dollars locally. Nov. 3 had nothing to do with Washington. It had everything to do with a polity that was tired of a first selectman and his rubber-stamping Democratic colleagues doing things like proposing an increase to the most recent budget of 4.3 percent during the greatest economic contraction since the Great Depression. Assuredly First Selectman Ken Flatto would have been sacked, too -- if he had been up for re-election -- for being so tone deaf to the economic and political rumblings.
I hope that Mr. Greenberger and Mr. Flatto take this election for what it was: a rejection of fiscally imprudent practices that have been a hall mark of recent administrations. Now, Republicans, the burden is on you to demonstrate better fiscal restraint than your predecessors.
Heritage was sold off
Washington has been willing to bet $800 billion on the myth that Wall Street and banks can save our nation. They should realize that our nation was given a death blow when each major American industry and their profitable American jobs were sold to China and Japan.
Without jobs our workers cannot own homes, support businesses, services, banks or the stock market. Without jobs workers cannot pay the taxes that support our government, state, county or town services.
America's heritage was sold off for easy profit. All the wealth forged in our nation's steel making blast furnaces: automobiles, airplanes, appliances.
Magnificent products of the industrial revolution sold off for easy profit. That power, energy and strength now hardly more than empty buildings, piles of brick, broken glass.
Sooner or later we must commit our nation's energy and resources to the monumental task of rebuilding our industry and our jobs.
Dick De Witt
Rep. Rosa DeLauro became outraged when Speaker Nancy Pelosi allowed Rep. Bart Stupak to introduce an amendment that bars the use of federal dollars to pay for abortions. DeLauro stated, "Abortion is a matter of conscience on both sides of the debate. ... This amendment takes away that same freedom of conscience from America's women. It prohibits them from access to an abortion even if they pay for it with their own money. It invades women's personal decisions."
DeLauro, I am a pro-life woman who believes you are invading my personal and moral decision when you take my money against my will (taxes) to support the killing of babies. The amendment does not outlaw abortions, as the National Organization for Women tries to claim when it stated, "women would be forced back into the back alleys to die." Really, how ridiculous! President Barack Obama promised that federal funds will not be used for abortions. Will this be yet another broken promise? We all know his extreme voting record on abortion.
Some of the most outrageous statements and nonsensical arguments came from the women in Congress. Sen. Barbara Boxer (D- Calif.) called the amendment "radical" and feels Congress should vote how "most women" feel about abortion. Perhaps Boxer is not aware of the Gallup Poll done in May 2009, which showed that more women said they were pro-life than pro-choice (49--44 percent). A Pew Poll in October found in one year there was a five-point drop in support of keeping abortion legal.
Why the change of heart? If a law required Planned Parenthood to discuss all options as well as show abortion videos, millions of babies would be saved every year. The truth is women who are shifting their positions from pro-choice to pro-life are those that are now starting families and have seen the sanctity of a life on their ultrasounds. What a sad reflection on our society when people who defend a human life are called "radicals."
Ironically, it is the pro-life Democrats that are standing firm even if it means delaying the passing of a health care bill. Abortion has always been a partisan issue of Democrat vs. Republican, but as Rep. George Miller (D-Calif.) told our Rep. DeLauro in a shouting match, "There are more pro-life votes in the House than pro-choice and they had better acknowledge that reality." Stupak has warned Democrats that "if they are going to summarily dismiss us by taking the pen to that language, there will be hell to pay." The Democrats risk not passing health care reform without the 40 pro-life democrats.
Unfortunately, the progressives of the Democrat party believe that their liberal president with a super majority can and should ignore the fact that the majority of Americans do not support any of their left-leaning policies.
"The bigger they are, the harder they fall."